The simplest Wiki document is just a list of paragraphs; the mechanism for creating paragraphs and more interesting textual constructs are described in the following sections.
The syntax for EdgeWiki was designed to support copy and paste from anywhere. A primary goal was therefore that the Wiki syntax would be unlikely to appear in existing documents when pasted as text into a Wiki page. Also, in many other Wiki formats, a newline is treated as a simple space, which can cause paragraph boundaries to disappear when text is copied from a Word processor. Thus a newline in EdgeWiki always starts a new line in the Wiki page as well.
Like the Wiki syntax used by Wikipedia, all links in EdgeWiki are intentional; traditional automatic WikiLinks are not supported. The advantages and disadvantages of these approaches are discussed at length elsewhere.
The syntax for EdgeWiki is hopefully easy to understand, even for users that are not familiar with HTML or other similar specifications for formatted text.
The EdgeWiki syntax should also be powerful enough to express most of the constructs in HTML, and should hopefully be usable even for large projects like books. An extension mechanism should allow other applications to add features to the syntax for their own purposes.
Specifically, the EdgeWiki syntax is designed to provide feature parity with XHTML 1.0 Strict as closely as possible.
I would like the syntax for EdgeWiki to support most international keyboards if possible, but I haven’t explored the problem very much yet.