[microformats-discuss] Visible metadata (was: Re: Microformat for blog-searchand characterizing)

Ryan King ryan at technorati.com
Sun Jul 24 13:19:13 PDT 2005

On Jul 24, 2005, at 10:44 AM, Robert Bachmann wrote:
> Tantek Çelik wrote:
>> However, this kind of use of <meta> is for the most part not much  
>> different
>> in mechanism from meta keywords, and is thus has all the same
>> vulnerabilities.
>> In short, invisible metadata works in small experiments, maybe  
>> even just
>> among small crowds of people, but when it goes mainstream, the signal
>> inevitably deteriorates to noise.  [...]
> One could - and I do - interpret relTags as the visible pendant of
>  <meta name="keywords" value="..." />
> Besides meta keywords there are also other meta tags.
> The most common I'm aware of are "author", "description" and "date".
> It could make sense to make them visible.
> Here are my ideas:
> Some web pages, my homepage for example, provide the date of the  
> last edit:
>  <p>Last modified: Sunday, July 24 2005</p>
> This information could be made machine-readable using the <abbr>
> technique from hCalendar:
>  <p><abbr class="last-modified-date" title="2005-07-24">Sunday,  
> July 24
>     2005</abbr></p>

I think this is a great idea.

As many have noticed, the <abbr> for date/time gets reused alot...so,  
I think it could stand to be refactored out into its own elemental  
microformat. What do you think?

> Somebody might think <abbr class="last-modified-date"> is redundant
> because of the HTTP Last-Modified header.
> I don't think so because the HTTP Last-Modified header describes when
> _the file_ was last modified, <abbr class="last-modified-date">
> describes when the last edit of _the content_ happened.

And, your proposed construct could apply to a part of a page (ie, a  
post), which the Last-Modified header cannot do.

> The author(s) of a page could be denoted with
>  <p>Authors:
>  <span class="author">John Doe</span> and
>  <span class="author">Winston Smith</span>
>  </p>
> or
>  <p>Authors:
>  <a href="http://example.org/~jd" class="author">John Doe</a> and
>  <a href="http://example.org/~ws" class="author">Winston Smith</a>
>  </p>

Take a look at <address> and hcard again and make sure it can't  
supply your needs.


> The description meta tag is used to provide a summary of a page,
> sometimes this summary is also part of the visible content, e.g:
> http://useit.com/alertbox/20050523.html
> There is a description meta tag containing a summary and a yellow box
> containing the same text.
> Using
>  <p class="summary">...</p>
> one could mark the summary, so that robots can extract it instead  
> of the
> description meta tag.

I'm not sure about this. Do people use this meta tag? And do they  
publish the same content in html?


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