[uf-discuss] Microformats vs XML

Michael MD mdagn at spraci.com
Thu Apr 27 02:31:14 PDT 2006

> For example,
> * ease of authoring *
>    <abbr class="dtstart"
>          title="19970903T163000Z">September 3, 1997, 16:30</abbr>
>                   attribute          content
> Here there is a redundancy of information, one which is easily
> accessible, the content part of the element, and one which is not
> easily accessible the "title" attribute part.
> A simple user will easily change the content part but will most of
> the time forget the title attribute, which makes the processing
> wrong. Human editing factor unfortunately. I had already the problem
> for some pages.
> And I repeat, it's not specific to microformats.

I think there needs to be editing software that can detect an attempt to
edit the content part and present the appropriate form for entering the date

> The only solution to cope with that is to have an authoring tool
> which "knows" about the synchronization, but then it means that the
> authoring tool can produce other formats as well (ics, rdf, txt, etc.)

I think we must start thinking about how to implement all this.
(maybe I need to look at the microformats-dev list?)

I'm actually here looking for practical ideas for building tools for
embedding/syndicating data that can be used by people such as events
promoters without requiring them to have prior knowledge of html/xml/etc.

I have not yet seen anything out there that is even remotely suitable for
 - I think I need to write my own - and using microformats to embed such
data in html looks like a nice way to do it.

Here is an example of the sort of thing I could use it for:  -

I run a busy nightlife/events listings website. ( http://www.spraci.com/ )

The normal way for people to add events to the listings is via forms on the

Some events promoters are lazy and just add my email address to their
mailing lists assuming there is someone with the time to enter their event
for them
(this is not the case at all! ... they are used to dealing with street press
for publicity - street press usually have sufficient advertising revenue to
hire data entry staff - not the case with most websites - definately not the
case with any sites run in a long-term sustainable way that are not
associated with print media)

Most of those emails are html emails often with little more than an image of
the flyer for their next event.
(so presently most such emails received here are simply trashed - I tell
them they must use the forms or provide automated means to update their
listings such as data feeds)

Wouldn't it be nice if there was a tool they could use to easily embed
vevent data (combined with location data like hcard for the venue and a list
of category tags) into their html emails so that listings sites they send it
to can extract the data?

... or they could use hcalendar markup on their own website and submit their
events page as a feed...

... either way authoring tools for the masses are needed and if none exist I
will have to build them...

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