quiki's source language is designed to be easily legible by the naked eye. That's the main goal: Anyone can read it and know what's going on. (Have you tried looking at a Wikipedia page source?) Anyone can write it, too.

infobox [quiki] {
    image {
        file: quiki-logo.png;
    Type:           [[ Wiki ]] suite;
    Established:    February 2013;
    Author:         [[ Mitchell Cooper | https://github.com/cooper ]];
    Website:        [[ https://quiki.mitchellcooper.me ]];
    Code:           [[ quiki on GitHub | https://github.com/cooper/quiki ]];

quiki is a file-based wiki suite and standalone web server.


The quiki source language is parsed hierarchically. The source is divided into blocks, each of which is responsible for parsing its inner contents. The master parser is concerned only with the most basic syntax:

Further parsing is provided by:

  • Text formatter
  • Map base block type
  • List base block type
  • Additional block types may implement custom parsing


C-style block comments are supported:

/* Some text */

These can span multiple lines and be nested within each other:

    Line one
    Line two has /* a nested comment */


Some characters must be escaped for literal use. The escape character (\) denotes the character immediately following it as escaped.

Anywhere in a document, these characters MUST be escaped for literal use:

Character Reason for escape
\ Escape character
{ Starts a block
} Terminates a block

Within formatted text, the following characters must be escaped in addition to those listed above:

Character Reason for escape
[ Starts a text formatting token
] Terminates a text formatting token

Within maps and lists, these characters must also be escaped:

Character Must be escaped in Reason for escape
; Map keys and values, list values Terminates a value
: Map keys Terminates a key

Brace-escape. Sometimes it may be desirable to disable all parsing within a particular block. This is especially useful for things like code{}, html{}, and fmt{} because then you do not have to escape every instance of special characters like {, }, and \. It works as long as there is a closing bracket } to correspond with every opening bracket {. To enable brace-escape mode, open and close the block with double curly brackets:

code {{
    ae.removeLinesInRanges = function (ranges) {
        if (!ranges || !ranges.length)
        for (var i = biggest; i >= smallest; i--) {
            if (!rows[i]) {
                if (typeof lastLine != 'undefined') {
                    editor.session.doc.removeFullLines(i + 1, lastLine);
                    lastLine = undefined;
            if (typeof lastLine == 'undefined') lastLine = i;


The fundamental component of the quiki language is the block. The syntax for a block is as follows:

Type [Name] { Content }
  • Type - The kind of block. The block type provides a unique function. For instance, imagebox{} displays a bordered image with a caption and link to the full size original.
  • Name - Depending on its type, a block may have a name. Each block type may use the name field for a different purpose. For example, infobox{} uses the field to display a title bar across the top of the info table.
  • Content - Inside the block, there may be additional blocks and/or text. Each block handles the content within differently. Some may treat it as plain text, while others may do further parsing on it.

See Blocks for a list of built-in block types.

Nameless blocks

The [block name] field may be omitted for block types that do not require it.

blocktype {


imagebox {
    desc:   [[Foxy]], supreme librarian;
    align:  left;
    file:   foxy2.png;
    width:  100px;

Named blocks

For block types that support a [block name] field, it should follow the block type and be delimited by square brackets [ and ]. The name field may contain additional square brackets inside it without the need for the escape character (\) as long as the number of opening brackets and closing brackets are equal. Otherwise, they must be escaped.

blocktype [block name] {


sec [Statistics] {
    This website currently hosts
    [@stats.site.articles] articles.

Block type inference

quiki assumes block type sec{} for any named block whose type is unspecified.

That example from just above can be more conveniently written as

[Statistics] {
    This website currently hosts
    [@stats.site.articles] articles.

The one exception to this is that if the immediate parent is infobox{}, an infosec{} is assumed instead:

infobox [United States of America] {

    Capital:        [! Washington, DC !];  
    Largest city:   [! New York City !];   

    [Goverment] {
        :[! Federal presidential constitutional republic | Republic !];   
        President:              [! Donald Trump !];
        Vice President:         [! Mike Pence !];
        Speaker of the House:   [! Paul Ryan !];
        Chief Justice:          [! John Roberts !];
    [Independence[nl]from [! Great Britain !]] {
        Declaration:            July 4, 1776;
        Confederation:          March 1, 1781;
        Treaty of Paris:        September 3, 1783;
        Constitution:           June 21, 1788;
        Last polity admitted:   March 24, 1976;

Model shorthand

quiki has a special syntax for using models. Write them like any block, except prefix the model name with a dollar sign ($).

$my_model {
    option1: Something;
    option2: Another option;

Note: From within the model source, those options can be retrieved with @m.option1 and @m.option2.

Same as writing the long form:

model [my_model] {
    option1: Something;
    option2: Another option;

Data types

map{} provides a key-value map datatype. It serves as the base of many other block types. Likewise, list{} provides an array datatype.


quiki supports string, boolean, and block variables.


Variables can be assigned at the document level only. Each assignment must occur on its own line.

String variables look like this:

@some_variable:     The value;
@another_variable:  You can escape semicolons\\; I think;

Boolean variables look like this:

@some_bool;     /* true  */
-@some_bool;    /* false */

Block variables look like this:

@my_box: infobox [United States of America] {
    Declaration:    1776;
    States:         50;


Once variables are assigned, they are typically used in formatted text or conditionals. You can use variables anywhere that formatted text is accepted like this:

I am allowed to use [b]bold text[/b], as well as [@variables].

If the variable contains a block, you can display it using {@var_name}. This syntax works anywhere, not just in places where formatted text is accepted like with the [@var_name] syntax. So if you have:

@my_box: infobox [United States of America] {
    Declaration:    1776;
    States:         50;

You can display the infobox later using:


Formatted variables

By the way, you can use text formatting within string variables, including other embedded variables:

@site:      [b]MyWiki[/b];
@name:      John;
@welcome:   Welcome to [@site], [@name].

If you don't want that to happen, take a look at interpolable variables, the values of which are formatted upon retrieval rather than at the time of assignment.


Variables can have attributes. This helps to organize things:

@page.title:    Hello World!;
@page.author:   John Doe;

You don't have to worry about whether a variable exists to define attributes on it. A new map{} is created on the fly if necessary (in the above example, @page does not initially exist, but an empty map is allocated automatically).

Some block types support attribute fetching and/or setting:

/* define the infobox in a variable so we can access attributes */
@person: infobox [Britney Spears] {
    First name:     Britney;
    Last name:      Spears;
    Age:            35;

/* display the infobox */

/* access attributes from it elsewhere
   btw this works for all map-based block types */

Did you know that [@person.First_name] [@person.Last_name] is
[@person.Age] years old?

Some data types may not support attributes at all. Others might only support certain attributes. For example, list{} only allows numeric indices.

@alphabet: list {
    ... the rest;

sec {
    Breaking News: [@alphabet.0] is the first letter of the alphabet,
    and [@alphabet.25] is the last.


You can use the conditional blocks if{}, elsif{}, and else{} on variables. Currently all that can be tested is the boolean value of a variable. Boolean and block variables are always true, and all strings besides zero are true.

if [@page.draft] {
    Note to self: Don't forget to publish this page.
else {
    Thanks for checking out my page.

Interpolable variables

Interpolable variables (with the % sigil) allow you to evaluate the formatting of a string variable at some point after the variable was defined.

Normally the formatting of string variables is evaluated immediately as the variable is defined.

@another_variable: references other variables;
@my_text: This string variable has [b]bold text[/b] and [@another_variable];
/* ok, @my_text now is:
   This string variable has <strong>bold text</strong> and references
   other variables

Interpolate variables are different in that their contents are evaluated as they are accessed rather than as they are defined.

@another_variable: references other variables;
%my_text: This string variable has [b]bold text[/b] and [@another_variable];
/* ok, @my_text now is:
   This string variable has [b]bold text[/b] and [@another_variable];

Now the variable is defined with the formatting still unevaluated, so accessing it as [@my_text] would display the raw formatting code. Instead, we use [%my_text] to display it which tells the parser to format the contents of the variable as we retrieve its value.

Whether you defined the variable with @ or % sigil does not concern the parser. Therefore if you do something like:

@my_text: This string variable has [b]bold text[/b];

and then try to display it with [%my_text], the variable is double-formatted, resulting in ugly escaped HTML tags visible to clients.

Special variables

@page contains information about the current page. Its attributes are set at the very top of a page source file.

  • @page.title - Human-readable page title. Utilized internally quiki, so it is required for most purposes. Often used as the <title> of the page, as well as in the <h1> above the first section{} block. The title can contain formatted text, but it may be stripped down to plaintext in certain places.
  • @page.created - UNIX timestamp or HTTP date format of the page creation time. Used for sorting the pages by creation date.
  • @page.author - Name of the page author. This is also optional but may be used by frontends to organize pages by author.
  • @page.draft - Boolean value which marks the page as a draft. This means that it will not be served to unauthenticated users.
  • @page.redirect - Page redirect target. All link types are supported, including pages, categories, external wiki links, and external site links.
  • @page.enable - Contains boolean attributes which allow you to enable or disable certain features specific to the page.
    • @page.enable.title - Whether to display the page title (from @page.title) as the header of the first section{} block if no other section title is specified. This assumes that the first section is an introduction, so it will have the highest header level. Overrides the wiki configuration option page.enable.title.

@category is used to mark the page as belonging to a category. Each attribute of it is a boolean. If present, the page belongs to that category. Example:

  • @category.news;
  • @category.important;

@m is a special variable used in models. Its attributes are mapped to any options provided in the model block.

Text formatting

Many block types, as well as values in variable assignment, can contain formatted text. Square brackets [ and ] are used to delimit text formatting tokens.

Basic formatting

  • [b]bold text[/b] - bold text
  • [s]strikethrough text[/s] - strikethrough text
  • [i]italicized text[/i] - italicized text
  • [c]inline code[/c] - inline code
  • superscript[^]text[/^] - superscripttext
  • subscript[v]text[/v] - subscripttext
  • [aquamarine]some colored text by color name[/]
  • [#ff1337]some colored text by hex code[/]


  • [@some.variable] - normal variable
  • [%some.variable] - interpolable variable
  • See Variables above
  • [[ Page name ]] - internal wiki page link
  • [[ wp: Page name ]] - external wiki page link
  • [[ ~ Cat name ]] - category link
  • [[ http://google.com ]] - external site link
  • [[ [email protected] ]] - email link
  • For any link type, you can change the display text: [[ Google | http://google.com ]]


  • [ref] - a fake reference. just to make your wiki look credible.
  • [1] - an actual reference number. a true reference.


  • [nl] - a line break
  • [--] - an en dash
  • [---] - an em dash
  • [&copy] - HTML entities by name
  • [&#34] - HTML entities by number