Typographic Conventions

Font styles


  • general light in-line emphasis
  • labels of elements in user interfaces (button names, form field labels, tab and window titles, menu selections)


  • general strong in-line emphasis
  • names of executables (programs, scripts)


  • file names, directory names, paths
  • names of parameters, variables and arguments
  • commands and code snippets
  • names of modules, libraries and packages
  • constant values and other literals

Code snippets

Code snippets are set in a monospace font and they are highlighted according to the language of the snippet. Example:

variable="Hello world!"
echo $variable

Special characters

Angle brackets < >

Angle brackets are sometimes used in code illustrations, like this:

# Running a program
program-name <arguments>

The <arguments> part suggests that program arguments should follow. The text inside the brackets gives a hint on the type of arguments, however if you are uncertain, consult the program help.

Concrete arguments are usually entered without the brackets!

Square brackets [ ]

Square brackets usually signify something optional, like command arguments that may be used (or not used), unless specified otherwise. Again, if you decide to use an optional argument, enter it without the brackets.


Admonitions are used to highlight a block of text that has special importance. Several types of admonitions are distinguished by their severity/importance:


advisory information that states that performing some action may lead to serious or dangerous consequences (what the user must not do)


advisory information that states that performing some action may lead to consequences that are unwanted or undefined, such as loss of data or an equipment problem (what the user should not do)


advisory information that states that a certain action must be performed where inaction may lead to unwanted or undefined consequences (what the user must do)


advisory information in addition to the surrounding text (what the user should know)


advisory information how to use a product more efficiently or in a way that is not apparent (what the user can do or know)

Authoring notes

Authoring notes—or TODOs—usually hold suggestions for new topics or notes about pending improvements. The TODOs are visible in the text if their output is allowed in project configuration.

If you cannot see a green frame here, the TODOs are turned off.

Semantic markup overview

This overview exists just for checking that semantic markup has correct styling.


  • ABBR – abbreviation with an explanation (abbr)
  • file.txt – file name (file)
  • Cancel – GUI label (guilabel)
  • Menu ‣ Submenu ‣ Option – menu selection (menuselection)
  • script.sh – program name (program)
  • FQDN – link to a term definition in the glossary (term)
  • in-line code or in-line code – in-line code (code role or ``literal``)