I don’t understand how Markdown won the battle of “simple markup” languages. Out of the three big nerd syntaxes (Markdown, Org, AsciiDoc), it’s the worst.

LanguageMy mom
can use it
Rich set
of features
MS Docs

In a parallel universe, Obsidian uses AsciiDoc, and Markdown is remembered as some half-assed idea that never got any traction.
(Org-Mode users are still doing their thing though, they’re probably a constant in all parallel universes.)

But Simon! Markdown is popular because it’s simple and straight to the point!

Well, Obsidian having non-standard features like transclusions, admonitions, or even tags, plus the 1 million+ installations of plugins such as Dataview, Tasks, or Templater tend to disagree with you.

People want more complex features. Also, “simple” doesn’t mean “dumb”. Markdown is dumb.

And yet, I’m glad it exists.

Mainstream apps like Discord, Teams, Slack, Notion, etc. incorporate its syntax in text fields. Editors like Obsidian, Bear, Joplin, and many others are bringing it to non-tech people, who discover that rich documents can be saved as plain text, the most long-lasting format ever.

It could have been better, but Markdown is bringing (back) plain text to the masses, so that’s cool.