Why I Use Plain Text Everywhere

Posted on Tue, 31 Jan 2017 in Other

A week ago I tried to migrate the blog to Wordpress again. I decided to give it another chance because I had plans to add more images to posts. It's quite difficult to do it using Pelican. Wordpress has a great tool for image managing. I thought that its WYSIWYG editor was good too. I installed it and I even converted a couple of posts to it. But then I decided to stop. It took me 20 minutes to format properly that posts.

Actually, it's much easier for me to use plain text for blogging. Why? It takes only a couple of minutes to format each post. Image placing adds about 5-10 minutes to it. And I could edit drafts everywhere and I could save it in a git repo like I do with source code. But the most important reason is that I can write much faster.

I don't know why, but all WYSIWYG editors slow me down and I prefer plain text to any kind of "rich" format. Maybe, I've spent many years coding, or I waste too much time formatting text in WYSIWYG. However, I use plain text everywhere where it's possible.

For example, I switched from Evernote to Simplenote for note taking and writing blog post drafts. I hardly ever keep the images. Evernote is now too big and too slow. OneNote is the same. Google Keep is fast and looks like a good choice, but it haven't got any API. That's why I choose Simplenote. It has API, I want to have possibility to get all my notes without any problems, and it is fast.

The second field where I use plain text is blogging. As I say before I use plain text for writing blog post drafts. And instead of using Wordpress for publishing it, I use Pelican for that. I've tried both, but it's very hard to make post look good, especially post with code example. Markdown and Pelican make the publishing process easier for me.

And of course I use Orgmode and Taskpaper as planning tools. Both formats are extremely flexible. Because I use Emacs, I could use all Orgmode features. But it remains just plain text file anyway. It could be edited in every text editor on any existing platform.

Plain text isn't for everyone. Almost every task needs some workaround if you use plain text. You have to be a geek a little bit to handle it.