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Explanations and instructions of all things Writing.Com.
#698725 added June 30, 2016 at 4:19am
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Enhance Your Item With WritingML
WritingML is the mark-up language used within Writing.Com that allows you to enhance your writing on our web-based system. Everything you need to embellish and enhance your writing can be found in the WritingML: Docs & Help pop-up window linked under Writing.Com Tools in the main navigation at the left. Tags for basic text formatting, such as bold, italic, and underline, are provided, as well as more complex tags, such as linking to members and items, embedding images, and footnotes.

WritingML is a markup language similar to HTML. If you are familiar with HTML, you will find it easy to learn. If you have not worked with HTML before, you may still find it easy to learn after reading through the simple descriptions, instructions and examples for each. We encourage you to experiment with the tags to become familiar with them and get creative with them!


The WritingML Formatting Button Bar
A bar of WritingML formatting buttons appears across the top of most writing or editing textboxes to facilitate your editing process. The button bar includes the most commonly used formatting options. The button bar makes it easy to add font attributes (bold, italic, underline, etc.), change the justification of your text, or re-format entire passages with a few clicks. Use your cursor to highlight the text you wish to modify and click the appropriate button to add the tags around your highlighted text. If you make a mistake or change your mind, highlight the tags and the text, and click the button again to remove the tags. You can click more than one button with the same text still highlighted, and it will nest the tags properly so they close in the reverse order they were opened. If you're not sure what a particular button does, hover your cursor over it for a description. Note that some browsers require you to open a button that has a submenu before highlighting your text.

The Script M Button and Other Keyboard Shortcuts
Members with an Upgraded membership or higher can create their own keyboard shortcuts, called macros. These macros can be invoked at the cursor position with keyboard combinations, or by clicking the script M button to open the Macro submenu, and clicking on the desired macro. For details, see "Macros.

Some generic keyboard shortcuts, such as Ctrl-S for the Save command, also work in these writing or editing text boxes.

The ? Button
The formating button labeled ? links to WritingML: Docs & Help for additional WritingML tags that you can copy/paste to your text and fill in.

         Visit the WritingML: Docs & Help page here: WritingML Help
         *Clapper* View a tutorial video: Video: Linking to an Item


The *Smile* Button and WritingML: Emoticons
The formatting button labeled *Smile* opens the WritingML: Emoticons page in a pop-up window. The directory has a menu of sorting options at the top and can be sorted by emoticon name (alphabetically), category, or color. The default view is Show as Groups/By Category/Show Headers. In the Show as Groups options, when you click on an emoticon, the tag for that emoticon is displayed for you to copy/paste to your text; for example: {e:Cool} yields *Cool*. Note that the label Tag: does not need to be copy/pasted. In the Show as List options, you can click an icon to copy its WritingML to your clipboard, from which you can then paste it into your text.

The directory of over 900 emoticons is also linked as WritingML: Emoticons under Writing.Com Tools in the main navigation on the left.

         Visit the WritingML: Emoticons page here: List of WDC Emoticons


Linking to WritingML Help
Sometimes it's helpful to include a direct link to a particular WritingML tag so that other members can quickly and easily read about it.

To get the specific section of the pop-up to open, you must use the part of the WritingML [opening] tag located between the braces or between the opening brace and the colon (for more complicated tags). For example:

To open the section on bold, the WritingML open bold tag is {b} so the part to use is b and the link is {code:WritingML:b}, which produces: WritingML Help for b

To open the section on linking to Book entries, the WritingML tag is {entry:######} so the part to use is entry and the link is {code:WritingML:entry}, which produces: WritingML Help for entry

Notes:
*Bullet* The correct section does not open until after the pop-up finishes loading.
*Bullet* If more than one section uses the same WML identifier, all those sections will open.
*Bullet* Pending further programming, some of the more recent additions to the WML don't have a working specific-code link.
*Bullet* The specific-code link won't open the sections on Random Rotation or Display WritingML Example, which depend on delimiter usage rather than tags.

To see the exact WritingML links to use and more examples of how to do this, see WritingML Help and WritingML Help for tag.


WritingML Autocomplete
As you type certain WritingML tags in any text box (that has a WritingML toolbar above it), the system will try to help you out with autocomplete. Press enter to select the first one or use the up/down arrows (or your mouse) to pick from the list. The system inserts the tag or tags and positions the cursor to continue typing, either between paired tags or a space after single tags. It works for tags with usernames, ID numbers, or multiple options.

You can ignore the autocomplete menus if they are not what you need, except that the cursor up and down keys are being used for the autocomplete menu. To close the autocomplete menu, keep typing or click elsewhere on the page.

For colors, type {c: and the menu shows colors in random order. For a new selection of random colors, move the cursor left and then right. As you type additional letters, the menu narrows the options accordingly.

For emoticons, type {e: and the menu shows emoticons in random order. For a new selection of random emoticons, move the cursor left and then right. As you type additional letters, the menu narrows the options accordingly.

For item links, type {item: and the menu shows your most recently modified items. As you continue typing to add numbers (such as {item:102), the menu narrows its options from the items in your portfolio and items you have Favorited or Fanned.

For user links, type either {user: or @ and then start typing a username. The system shows selections from your Favorites/Fans list first, and will fill in the list with all other members on Writing.Com.

For links to notes, posts, reviews, entries, snapshots, etc., the menu shows your most recently created ones.

For embedding an image, photo, award or badge, the menu shows your most recently created ones.

Notes:
*Bullet* [Sep 18, 2013] This is supported for Chrome, Safari (Mac & iPad), Firefox and MSIE 10. It is NOT supported but should not cause problems with Mobile view (Android/iPhone) or MSIE 8. (MSIE 9 is a question mark. On phones/etc., it might work on the regular site view.) For example screenshots, see "Note: Quick Backstory: For ...".
*Bullet* [Jun 26, 2016] "Re: Bitem list pop up"  : Turned on for Mobile View [beta].


Posting Unprocessed WritingML
Sometimes it's helpful to show unprocessed formatting tags in text, such as in giving directions, sharing a template, or asking for help with a formatting problem. Using doubled braces {{ and }} makes the formatting tags show as unprocessed. One way of doing this is to put {db} and {/db} tags around the formatting tags. See WritingML Help for db.


Some Pointers for Using and Troubleshooting WritingML

*Bullet* When you open a paired tag, you must close it.

*Bullet* When you open several paired tags together to format the same section of text, you must close them in the reverse of how they were opened (last opened, first closed).

*Bullet* When you have a long string of tags, either formatting tags or emoticon strings, you should include spaces between some of the tags to avoid problems caused by having a character string longer than the allowed line length. Such problems can include broken tags that were not mis-typed, stretching the page or column width, and text running behind the right margin or right column.

*Bullet* Some tags, such as center and quote, automatically add a blank line at the end of the formatted text.

*Bullet* The default font size is Size 3. Note that viewers who need larger text to be able to read can adjust the size of the text to meet their personal requirements by using their browser zoom [which remembers zoom settings for particular sites/pages] and/or the accessibility settings of their operating system [which some browsers adopt as the default zoom setting]. It is not necessary to compensate for other people's needs by increasing the font size.

*Bullet* The lightest colors can be difficult to read. Some readers may need to highlight such text to see what it says.

*Bullet* List tags cannot contain emoticons or other ML. Lists cannot be uncounted. For additional list examples, see "Re: Automatic Numbering ML?"  .

*Bullet* The footnote button adds the tag pair around the highlighted text for the footnote, or adds the tag pair at the cursor if no text is highlighted. Afterward, in the leading tag you may change the style of the automatic numbering if you wish, as described in WritingML Help for footnote. The default numbering is numeric.

*Bullet* The dropnote and popnote buttons add the tag pair around the highlighted text for the inside of the dropnote or popnote, or add the tag pair at the cursor if no text is highlighted. Afterward, in the leading tag you replace the text within the quotation marks (LINK TEXT HERE) with your own link text (the marked text that indicates the dropnote or popnote when the note is closed). Do not replace or delete the quotation marks. Note that your link text should not include quotation marks or apostrophes, or a userlink. When your desired link text doesn't work, consider using only the closing punctuation and/or a following space or {s}{s} as the link text.

*Bullet* Some tags are complex enough that they cannot be nested inside another one. For example, you cannot use a quote tag inside another quote tag, or a dropnote tag inside another dropnote tag.

*Bullet* Some tags (such as b-item links, dropnotes and popnotes) do not react well to being inside other tags (such as font attributes). You may need to close the other tag set before the fussy tag and reopen the other tag set after.

*Bullet* Popnote tags do not work in macros. Popnotes can be problematic in Mobile view.

*Bullet* IO-Amazon tags cannot be centered. When IO-Amazon tag(s) are used inside a block quote, follow-on text after the block quote can be pushed underneath the image(s) by putting the IO-Amazon tag(s) inside a pair of left, center, or right justify tags. The justify tags do not affect the image, just the text.

*Bullet* Merit Badges can only be displayed by the recipient or the giver. The sizing letters s, m, and l must be lowercase. Merit Badges cannot be displayed in email or reviews. Merit Badges can be displayed in your items, forum posts, notes and note comments.

{e:bullet} Using the browser Find function (Crtl-f) can be helpful in proofreading and troubleshooting your WritingML tags.

Other WritingML Tags
These WritingML tags currently haven't graduated to WritingML Help. Some are pending and are listed here on a temporary basis. Some are beta or alpha, so they're not officially supported, could cause problems, and may change. Links to places where examples have been given are included where available.

Text Formatting:

Indent (multiple): {indent:N} for N = 1 to 10.
          Exceeding the value of N results in an in-text error message: Max 'indent' = 10
          For examples, see "Nifty update to the Indent and S WritingML Tags....

Space (multiple): {s:N} for N = 1 to 40.
          Note that {s:5} = {indent:1}.
          Exceeding the value of N results in an in-text error message: Max 's:' = 40
          For examples, see "Nifty update to the Indent and S WritingML Tags....

Dropcap (beta): {dropcap}...{/dropcap}
          Can be used around one or more paragraphs, or around the dropcap character.
          The dropcap character must be alphanumeric (A-Z, a-z, 0-9). No spaces or special characters!
          Bold, italic, and/or color can be used on the dropcap character and/or the paragraph text.
          Size tags can be used only on the outside of the dropcap tags or only on the rest of the paragraph.
          Dropcap tags can be used inside a block quote.
          Dropcap tags cannot contain another set of dropcap tags.
          For examples, see "Note: Once upon a time, on ..." and "Examples of Complex Dropcaps.


Linking:

Link to Member as just handle (alpha): {h-user:USERNAME}
          For an example, see "Re: h-user tag?"  .

Link to Post from Forum: {f-post:#######}
          Re: Please r-this ;-) from Suggestion Box 

Link to Post from Forum with Content Rating: {fr-post:#######}
          Re: Please r-this ;-) from "Suggestion Box [ASR]
          Qualifies for use in scroll.

Embedding:

Embed a Progress bar (beta): {code:progress(PERCENT,COLOR_LEFT,COLOR_RIGHT,LABEL,TEXT)}
          PERCENT must be a number (with or without % sign)
          COLOR_LEFT defaults to GREEN
          COLOR_RIGHT defaults to RED
          LABEL defaults to %
          TEXT defaults to complete
          For examples, see "Note: Thanks to a suggestion ..." and "Re: WritingML for Progress Meter?"  .




Need More Help?
If you still have questions, visit "Technical Support Forum.1


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Footnotes
1  Updated by Northernwrites ; written by The StoryMaster and The StoryMistress

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