An article is an EML (Edgecase Markup Language) file. You can write one in any text editor.
EML is designed to be a simple markup language that is straightforward (but not necessarily fast) for both computers and humans to read and edit. Element names are usually lower-case English words.
Here is the simplest possible article:
The content is empty. The text of your article will go in between
In the EML example above:
<article>is a tag.
<content></content>is an element.
</article>is an end tag.
- The string "article" in
<article>is the name of that tag. It is also the name of the corresponding element and end tag.
- The title element contains the entry "Viewpoint".
- The article element contains the title element and is its parent.
- The title element is a child of the article element.
- Elements are tree structures. They have children, which may have children of their own, and so on.
- Entries are children of their containing elements, but do not have children themselves. They are "leaves of the tree".
Notes on the title element:
- The first letter must be capitalised.
- It must contain underlines instead of spaces.
- Edgecase prefers not to use periods after initials in a name.
Tag names can contain the following characters:
Note: In EML, underlines are used for separating words in tag names (e.g.
italic_lines). Hyphens, periods, and digits are used to distinguish element versions.
Entries can contain any character in Printable ASCII.
Here are the characters of Printable ASCII:
- Visible characters:
- Whitespace characters:
Newline (\n), tab (\t), and space ( ).
Note: In EML entries, the characters <, >, and \ must be escaped by prefixing them with a backslash (\).
Example process for writing a basic article:
- You would like to publish a copy of the short story Report on an Unidentified Space Station by J G Ballard.
- Acquire a starting text (e.g. by using a search engine). Keep some notes about how you did this.
- Proofread the starting text, correct minor spelling errors, and perhaps check it against an authoritative copy (e.g. a book, a scan, a high-quality PDF copy). Keep some notes about how you did this.
- Format it as a plain text file (Printable ASCII) and add some basic structure using EML. This means placing the text within the content element of the simple article example shown above.
- Lines are not 80 characters. Instead, two newlines are placed after each paragraph. (You can place more if you like.) This means that paragraphs wrap nicely, whatever the screen size or client size.
- Do some basic typesetting (bold, italic, extra blank lines for spacing). You do not have to preserve the typesetting approach / format that you find in the original text, but you can if you like.
- Add a <notes> element at the end of the article (but still within the content element). Put any notes about how you acquired the starting text and prepared it in here.
- Send in the result as a single .txt file.
To see an example of how to typeset a basic article, browse to one of the following articles and click "Download this article" in the Navigation Menu.
- A possible inspiration for Yes Minister
- Report on an Unidentified Space Station by J G Ballard
- Typesetting: Basic
- Typesetting: Indentation
- Typesetting: Latin-1
- Typesetting: Links
- Typesetting: Code