What is Nocturnal

Nocturnal is a photo story publishing platform using Markdown as text formatting. Think of Instagram, but for photo articles. There is of course other similar services in the wild, but we combine the goodness of Markdown, with a layout to present full-sized photos and media in a neat package.

Who is this service for

If you’re someone that take photos, or like to write articles accompanied by lots of photos, this is for you.

  • Travel blogger: you write about each of your destinations, and display interactive maps of each places you visit.
  • Photographer: you showcase your latest portfolio photoshoot session, accompanied by story of your subject.
  • Journalist: you documents your journey to investigate leads as part of bigger coverage.
  • Novelist: you write a short fictional story interwoven by beautiful graphics.
  • Designer: you post a case-study into the making of your client branding.
  • Cook: you show and tell how to make your favourite dishes and pastries.
  • You.

What is Markdown

Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool for web writers. Markdown allows you to write using an easy-to-read, easy-to-write plain text format, then convert it to valid HTML. It’s based on formatting conventions from email and usenet. For more info, check out the original project page or learn about Markdown syntax.

Why I have to use Markdown

By using Markdown, we allow content to be composed and published by any other platform that supports it. Your formatted content is not locked into any single platform, including this one. Usually other platform hide the complexity to deal with images and media using their own specialized editor. Nocturnal try to make this transparent, by allowing you to declare these special contents as texts.

Which are the supported platform for Markdown

For writing, there’s numerous text editor app in major operating systems:

For content publishing, few places where you can post Markdown contents are:

If you’re a technical person, there’s quite few self-hosted publishing platform that you can also use:

What is the basic format of a post

Every post need to have a title, and a sub-title. When you click on “Create post” button, it will auto-insert the placeholder title and sub-title. It will looks like:

# Title
#### Sub-title

Read about publishing a post in Nocturnal.

What is the difference between post visibilities?

  • Draft: The post is private.
  • Hidden: The post will not shows up anywhere, except via direct URL (permalink).
  • Published: The post will shows up in your journal feed and related posts.
  • Promoted: The post will shows up across all Nocturnal community, including home page.

What is the difference between category and tag

Categories: stories will be grouped in Nocturnal community, and only few curated list of categories exists in the whole site. Only three maximum category can be listed under a post.

Tags: a free-for-all do-what-you-want post identification. Similar to Instagram or Twitter hashtags, there’s no limit to what you can use for tags, and you can have unlimited tags for a post.

How do I customize the post layout

After composing your content in the editor, click on “Preview” on top right corner of the right pane. You can use text, photo, or map as post header background. You can just drag and drop your desired image to set it as background, once you choose “photo” as post header.

For “map” header, you can use the text field on bottom right of the header to look for the right coordinate of the map. Map bounds also depends on your queried location, so to set a specific location, be specific on your queries.

You can also customize the fonts of header texts, and body texts from the selection dropdown on top left of the post content. More on this:

How do I contact you

You can email us at contact(at)trynocturnal.com for any feedbacks, complaints, suggestions or general enquiries.

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