All Posts

Published in General

A Brief Guide to Note Taking with Markdown

By Scholarly

10 min read

Share this post


Welcome to our comprehensive guide on note taking with Markdown. In this article, we will explore the history, benefits, best practices, pros and cons, common techniques, challenges, and potential online apps related to note taking with Markdown. We will also discuss the significance of this method and its future applications. So, let's dive in!


Past State

Note taking has always been an essential part of learning and knowledge management. In the past, people relied on traditional pen and paper methods to jot down their thoughts and ideas. However, with the advent of technology, digital note taking tools emerged, allowing users to take notes electronically.

Current State

In the current state, note taking with Markdown has gained significant popularity among individuals, students, and professionals alike. Markdown is a lightweight markup language that uses plain text formatting to add structure to notes. It offers a simplified yet powerful way to create and organize notes efficiently.

Future State

Looking ahead, the future of note taking with Markdown looks promising. With advancements in AI technology, we can expect smarter note taking assistants that can auto-generate notes and provide intelligent suggestions based on user input. AI-powered transcription and formatting features will make note taking even more seamless and time-saving.


  • Simplicity: Markdown's simple syntax allows for quick and easy note taking, without the need for complex formatting tools.
  • Portability: Markdown files can be easily transferred and accessed across multiple platforms and devices.
  • Flexibility: Markdown supports various output formats, including HTML, PDF, and Word, making it adaptable to different requirements.
  • Focus on Content: Markdown's minimalist approach minimizes distractions and helps users focus on the content rather than formatting.
  • Version Control: With Markdown, users can easily track changes made to their notes using version control systems like Git.


Note taking with Markdown holds immense significance for individuals and professionals in various fields. It provides an efficient way to capture and organize information, enhancing productivity and knowledge retention. By utilizing Markdown's simplicity and flexibility, users can create structured and visually appealing notes that are easy to understand and review.

Best Practices

  • Use Headers and Lists: Utilize Markdown's header syntax to create a clear hierarchy in your notes. Combine it with lists to organize information in a structured manner.
  • Formatting Styles: Take advantage of Markdown's formatting styles, such as bold, italics, and code blocks, to highlight important keywords and concepts in your notes.
  • Linking and Referencing: Use Markdown's hyperlink syntax to link relevant external resources, articles, or websites to your notes. Additionally, make use of Markdown's reference-style links for cleaner and more readable notes.
  • Images and Visuals: Markdown supports the embedding of images and other media files, allowing you to enhance your notes with visual representations.
  • Practice Consistency: Maintain consistency in your Markdown syntax and formatting style across all your notes to ensure readability and ease of navigation.

Pros and Cons


  • Efficient and quick note taking
  • Lightweight and easy-to-learn syntax
  • Portable and compatible with multiple platforms
  • Focuses on content rather than formatting
  • Supports version control


  • Lack of advanced formatting options
  • Limited support for complex tables or charts
  • Steeper learning curve for advanced features
  • Difficulties in collaborating and sharing with non-Markdown users
  • Dependency on Markdown-supported platforms or editors

Common Techniques

  • Headers and Subheadings: Use different levels of headers and subheadings to create a logical structure in your notes.
  • Lists and Bullet Points: Utilize bullet points and numbered lists to organize information and make it more readable.
  • Code Blocks: Use code blocks to showcase and explain specific lines of code or command snippets in technical notes.
  • Tables: Although Markdown has limited support for tables, you can create simple tables using pipe characters and dashes.
  • Linking and References: Hyperlink relevant resources and use reference-style links for cleaner note formatting.


  • Limited Formatting Options: Markdown's simplicity can be a double-edged sword, as it lacks advanced formatting options found in more complex document editors.
  • Syntax Complexity at Times: Although Markdown is easy to learn and use, certain complex formatting requirements may pose challenges.
  • Transition from Traditional Methods: Transitioning from traditional note taking methods to Markdown may require some adjustment and initial effort.
  • Collaboration with Non-Markdown Users: Sharing and collaborating with individuals who are not familiar with Markdown syntax can pose challenges.
  • Platform Dependency: Markdown is dependent on compatible platforms and editors for optimal usage.

Online Apps

  1. Scholarly: Scholarly is an AI-powered note taking platform that supports Markdown. It offers features like AI-generated text completion, flashcard creation, auto-complete, and more.
  2. Bear: Bear is a popular note-taking app for iOS and macOS users. It supports Markdown and provides powerful organization and search capabilities.
  3. Typora: Typora is a cross-platform Markdown editor with a live preview feature that allows users to see the rendered output in real-time.
  4. Notion: Notion is a versatile productivity app that supports Markdown. It offers collaborative note taking, task management, and database organization features.
  5. Evernote: Evernote is a widely-used note-taking app that supports Markdown. It provides features like organization, synchronization across devices, and built-in OCR for searching text within images.


In conclusion, note taking with Markdown offers a simple yet powerful method to capture and organize information effectively. Its history and current state reflect the increasing popularity and adoption of Markdown for note taking purposes. The benefits of Markdown, such as its simplicity, portability, and focus on content, make it a valuable tool for individuals and professionals alike. However, it is important to consider the limitations and challenges associated with Markdown. With advancements in AI technology, the future of note taking with Markdown holds great potential. By following best practices, utilizing common techniques, and exploring online apps like Scholarly, users can enhance their note taking experience and unlock the full potential of Markdown.


Try Scholarly

It's completely free, simple to use, and easy to get started.

Join thousands of students and educators today.

Are you a school or organization? Contact us