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Submission Guide

Welcome! The following guide will help folks interested in submitting Cairn content to the website. Files are written in Markdown, and submitted through git (the preferred method, see below). However, if this all seems a bit too technical, that’s OK! Join our Discord server and ask for help, or even send Yochai a direct message with your work and he’ll update it for the website. Formatting content does take some work, but in the end we are all better for it!


Markdown is a syntax that uses entirely text characters in order to do fancy formatting. For example, if you want to write something in bold text, you put extra characters aroun the words to tell Markdown what should be bolded (e.g. **bold** becomes bold). Follow this guide for proper Markdown formatting.

To create a page on the Cairn website, you need to create a text file with your content, written in the Markdown format and ending in the *.md suffix. GitHub then handles the rest!

Creating a file in markdown

  • Create a file with a .md extension using your favorite text editor. While programs like Microsoft Notepad and TextEdit on MacOS get the job done, there are editors out there that make writing markdown a breeze. An example is GhostWriter, Notepad++ on Windows and TextMate are good options.
  • Type text using the Markdown format into the file. Please refer to the Cairn Style Guide when writing your submission!
  • Save the file to the appropriate folder on the website using Github (see below).

How do I get my submission onto the Cairn site?

Using Github

  • First, you need to create a GitHub account and ‘fork’ the repo. See fork this, and this GitHub documentation for specific instructions and examples.

    You have now created a version of the website files that is entirely your own. It’s based on the original set of website files (in GitHub terms, the ‘repository’), but the website does not look at your copy of the files at all. This gives you complete freedom to play around with edits before they get pushed to the main website.

  • If you would like to work on the files from your local computer, you will need to install git.

    If you like editing files through installed programs, rather than in a web browser, this allows you to download and upload files easily to GitHub and have your method of choice for writing the webpages.

  • Clone the repository to your own computer. See here for a tutorial.
  • Should you want to edit the files directly on your computer, this step does the mass-downloading of files onto your computer.

    This creates yet another version of the files on your computer, different from the repository you forked.


Files should be placed in the following locations:

Pushing your changes

The general workflow is to write files on your computer to your local copy of the website, then submit the changes back to the original website files.

  • Using Git, commit the changes to your repository.
  • Using Git, push the changes onto GitHub.
  • You uploaded your new files and any changes to the GitHub website (which has a separate version of your files).
  • Using GitHub, create a pull request to the original GitHub repository that we forked from.
    • Note that last this step is different; it’s a request and thus not automatic. The maintainers of the main repository will then approve or deny the changes.
  • Wait for a repository maintainer to accept changes.

Where do we go from here?

Now that you know how to contribute, take a look at what is desired for the website. In particular:

Further Help

If you need further assistance, technical or otherwise, feel free to reach out on the Discord server. In particular, this page was written by Sam (@quajzen), and can be reached through Discord.