[microformats-discuss] Re: Educationg Others

Dr.Ernie Prabhakar drernie at opendarwin.org
Wed Oct 5 09:59:31 PDT 2005

Hi Robert,

On Oct 5, 2005, at 8:32 AM, Robert Sayre wrote:
>  I wonder if  there's an answer to the most frequently asked  
> question around here:
> "What are microformats for?"

The answer is that there is no answer.   Is that Zen enough for you? :-)

Seriously, it does seem that either people immediately sense the  
value, or it appears completely ridiculous to them.

In my case, microformats were clearly the answer to several questions  
I've had:
* What is the most robust and reusable to way to CSS-tag my HTML
* What is the easiest way to define a new content format that I want  
to see widely adopted
* How can I publish stuff on the web that I also want people to pull  
*off* the web

That is why I decided to drink the kool-aid and start doing  
everything in microformats: because its easy, because it reduces my  
need for making arbitrary decisions, and because it makes it easy to  
recover the data later.

However, it is almost like asking the question "What is a car for?"    
There's no generic answer that both covers all the edge cases, and  
yet still differentiates it from bikes, buses, or bovines.

Unlike many standards organizations, I don't see microformats.org  
trying to convince people that "This *will* solve your problem."    
Rather, we're saying, "This has solved -our- problems.  Why not look  
to see if it might solve yours?" That's all.

-- Ernie P.
Ernest N. Prabhakar, Ph.D. <drernie at opendarwin.org>
Ex-Physicist, Marketing Weenie, and Dilettante Hacker
Probe-Hacker blog: http://www.opendarwin.org/~drernie/

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