[uf-discuss] Some hcard feedback from a vCard implementor
ryan at technorati.com
Tue Apr 4 11:38:36 PDT 2006
Hi Sam, welcome to the list!
On Apr 4, 2006, at 10:25 AM, Sam Roberts wrote:
> Hi, I'm the author of Vpim (http://vpim.rubyforge.org), an
> implementation (in progress) of vCard and iCalendar encoding/decoding
> for ruby. Some comments on the hcard specification.
> I notice hcard is trying to deduce semantic information from FN,
> but I'd
> like to convince you this is a Bad Idea.
Don't bother, we already now its a bad idea. The "Implied N
optimization" only applies in certain cases. In other cases, you can
specify the N fields. See http://microformats.org/wiki/hcard#Implied_.
> Couple other thoughts:
> - You don't mention internationalization. Its a weakness in vCard. I'd
> suggest that you specify hcard as being in unicode, with utf-8
> a BOM as the preferred encoding.
There's no need to specify an encoding for hcard, that problem is
deferred to the (x)html layer. Per the parsing document (http://
microformats.org/wiki/hcard-parsing), those encodings should be honored.
> A note on what I've noticed about AddressBook. It sounds like you
> already noticed that Apple mangles utf-8 on import (I haven't tried
> utf-8 with a BOM, though). If interop with Apple is something you're
> looking for, then you need to be either ASCII (or maybe some ancient
> Mac character set), or else UCS-2. They started adding a BOM to the
> start of their exported UCS-2 in the last year or so. Putting one in
> is probably a good idea. I wouldn't try to embed character sets
> the card using parameters, not likely to be very portable.
Actually, we already have compatibility with Apple's Addressbook.app,
by using UTF-16. I believe newer versions of AddressBook have fixed
> - The spec reads like a bunch of simple examples, not a spec,
> though the
> discussion of design principles is nice. hcalendar is even more
> lacking, its just a cut-n-paste of hcard, with lots of information
> removed! You won't get good interop without a more detailed spec
> and great examples.
Hmm, I could consider the simplicity a feature. If there are areas of
the spec that need more detail, please point them out, but I'm not a
fan of complexity for its own sake.
> Maybe I'm just not up on XHTML and the semantic web and the
> of the XML would be clear to me if I was, but I don't see any
> process for converting vCard fields into XML. What I'd be looking
> to add hcard as an output format for vCard is something like:
Are you looking to convert vCards into generic XML or into hCards?
> vCard --
> hcard --
> <blah class="NAME">
> <span type="pname">pvalue</span>
> Followed by the short list of special rules/"optimizations".
I'm not sure what you're asking for here.
> - Don't make their mistake. Please put at least two examples in your
> spec: an organization, and an individual. And make them COMPLICATED.
> Two photos, a bunch of different kinds of addresses, real names
> (middle names, suffixes, etc.).
I like have the spec simple, we have other space for examples: http://
> Final thought - from a programmers point of view, the inconsistency of
> human names and titles may be annoying (who needs multiple last names,
> really?), but thats how people are. Better to embrace something close
> to human conventions from the start than to try and get away with an
> overly simplified model, I think.
Um, actually, I think we are embracing human conventions. If there
are places where we appear to not being doing so, please speak up.
ryan at technorati.com
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