"When javadoc parses a doc comment, leading asterisk (*) characters on each line are discarded; blanks and tabs preceding the initial asterisk (*) characters are also discarded. Starting with 1.4, if you omit the leading asterisk on a line, the leading white space is no longer removed. This enables you to paste code examples directly into a doc comment inside a <PRE> tag, and its indentation will be honored. Spaces are generally interpreted by browsers more uniformly than tabs. Indentation is relative to the left margin (rather than the separator /** or <PRE> tag)."