Formatting standards and conventions

This page shows the formatting standards for the Knative documentation. Knative uses Markdown to markup the content and Hugo with the Docsy template, to build the website. To ensure consistency across our documentation, we have agreed on these formatting standards.

Learn about the Hugo/Docsy requirements for each page

Linking: Use relative URLs

For all links within the Knative content, use relative linking (also known as relative URLs).

Linking conventions:

  • Links between files in the same directory must be prefixed with: ./

    Example: [Shortcodes](../shortcodes) renders as Shortcodes

  • To link across folders, add ../ for each directory that you must travel towards the root docs directory.

    Example: [FAQs](../../../faqs) renders as FAQs


Early on in the content development, all of the documentation was author in the GitHub repos and since then, there are many contributors who value the ability to consume the documentation from within the repo. In addition, the main Markdown editor and renderer when authoring Knative docs is the GitHub UI. Therefore, we continue to use relative URLs throughout to ensure that all the links work as expected, both when clicked in the GitHub UI and on

Hugo has it’s own syntax for linking across your content and treats the content across the site as a single version of docs (including a Hugo specific definition of relative links: relative to the website domain). Unfortunately, that type of linking renders markdown content unusable from with the GitHub repos and does not allow for easy versioning/archiving.

Don’t use capitalization for emphasis

Only use the original capitalization found in the code or configuration files when referencing those values directly. Use back-ticks `` around the referenced value to make the connection explicit. For example, use IstioRoleBinding, not Istio Role Binding or istio role binding.

If you are not referencing values or code directly, use normal sentence capitalization, for example, “The Knative role binding configuration takes place in a YAML file.”

Use angle brackets for placeholders

Use angle brackets for placeholders in commands or code samples. Tell the reader what the placeholder represents. For example:

  1. Display information about a pod:

    $ kubectl describe pod

    Where <pod-name> is the name of one of your pods.

Use bold to emphasize user interface elements

Do Don’t
Click Fork. Click “Fork”.
Select Other. Select ‘Other’.

Use italics to emphasize new terms

Do Don’t
A cluster is a set of nodes … A “cluster” is a set of nodes …
These components form the control plane. These components form the control plane.

Use the gloss shortcode and add glossary entries for new terms.

Use back-ticks around file names, directories, and paths

Do Don’t
Open the foo.yaml file. Open the foo.yaml file.
Go to the /content/en/docs/tasks directory. Go to the /content/en/docs/tasks directory.
Open the /data/args.yaml file. Open the /data/args.yaml file.

Use back-ticks around inline code and commands

Do Don’t
The foo run command creates a Deployment. The “foo run” command creates a Deployment.
For declarative management, use foo apply. For declarative management, use “foo apply”.

Use code-blocks for commands you intend readers to execute. Only use inline code and commands to mention specific labels, flags, values, functions, objects, variables, modules, or commands.

  • Learn how to include code snippets from source files using the readfile shortcode. See an example.

Use back-ticks around object field names

Do Don’t
Set the value of the ports field in the configuration file. Set the value of the “ports” field in the configuration file.
The value of the rule field is a Rule object. The value of the “rule” field is a Rule object.