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Since comments gained the ability of some very limited formatting that's also a source of frustration involved. The syntax is, while similar to the main post syntax, still different enough that you stumble over the discrepancies every now and then.

Something like *foo*-bar works in normal posts but not in comments.

Case in point here: How the hell does the parser work?

Or rather: What do I need to do to the string to work? Adding a space after the interior * does work. But that's sort of a non-solution. Adding U+200B in there does not work (would have been too easy, I presume).

ETA: Ok, in the comments I've been doing some testing. It appears that everything that's a space seems to work (suggests \s is used somewhere). Since the zero-width space isn't a space it doesn't work. While I used foo-bar as a test string I also sometimes wanted to emphasize part of a non-hyphenated word, something like *un*foo (which works in Markdown, even though it doesn't appear to work in the JS preview. However, I would have expected the hyphen-minus at least to count as a delimiter. Looks like the hair space is the best option so far.

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foo -bar U+2008 (too long) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 4:32
    
foo -bar U+2009 (noticeable, but might be ok for most people) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 4:33
    
foo -bar U+200A (nigh-invisible; well, it's a hair space after all; might be that it only seem to work for italic, though) – foo -bar, foo bar (no, seems ok; code formatting adds space anyway) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 4:33
    
*foo*​-bar U+200B (would have been nice) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 4:35
    
*foo*‌-bar U+200C (not the right tool for the job, but maybe ... nope) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 4:36
    
*foo*‍-bar U+200D (still not the right tool, but one can hope ... nope) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 4:36
    
Related: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/33578/… –  Jon Seigel Apr 4 '10 at 4:43
    
Jon: not exactly, though. The question is about showing the features that are avilable in comments. I think a full-page explanation on why comment markup is inconsistent with the normal markup (even with the parts that look similar) might be too much. –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 5:00
    
@Johannes: I'm just saying that if the MarkDown behaviour for comments is fully documented somewhere, it would cut down on a lot of confusion about issues that come up over and over again. –  Jon Seigel Apr 4 '10 at 5:08
    
@Jon: an, true that. It's not Markdown, though, as the backslashes-are-markup-suddenly-too issue doesn't exist in the normal post syntax (which uses Markdown). It's more like an extended subset. Akin to browser CSS support or so :-) –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 5:15
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1 Answer

Intra word styling is not supported in comments.

Your workarounds using thin word separators work, and is likely to be the only thing you can do to get the effect.

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Is there something like an official list of functional differences between Markdown and the sorta-like-Markdown-but-totally-different comment formatting? Not a list of features vs. features but differences between similar-looking features. Like that backslashes are markup too now and stuff like that. –  Јοеу Apr 4 '10 at 5:07
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