[uf-discuss] Microformats vs XML

Steven Livingstone connect at stevenR2.com
Thu Apr 27 04:16:11 PDT 2006

Yes - I was tempted to add such a comment, but don't know Microformats well
enough yet. I'm certainly not knocking standards or modularization, but
practical experience has show to me that simple can also be effective.

RSS (as an example) has remained very simple ever since it was created and
XML-RPC has also remained so along with many others. Sure, there have been
additions on top of RSS, but fundamentally it is easy to get your head
around what is required to get started. Hence they have remained popular
even longer than 5 years after being created.

In contrast if you consider RDF, OWL etc - they are not particularly easy to
get running with. There is quite a learning curve, but having used them for
a number of years I appreciate what they can do and why the specs make them
so powerful. However, there have also been a number of efforts that have
disappeared off the map because of over engineering (over-modularization).

The first paragraph of Uche Ogbuji's IBM article sums it up for me:

It's certainly nothing specific to Microformats, but more a web 2.0 view on
things where simplicity is being particularly effective.


-----Original Message-----
From: Karl Dubost [mailto:karl at w3.org] 
Sent: 27 April 2006 11:08
To: connect at stevenR2.com; Microformats Discuss
Subject: Re: [uf-discuss] Microformats vs XML

Le 06-04-27 à 16:50, Steven Livingstone a écrit :
> Less formal creations such as RSS never suffered from that as much  
> (in constrast to say NewsML which had a much more specific goal -  
> the XSD is around 30 pages long). Look at the contrast of something  
> like XML-RPC versus SOAP/WSDL and so on. The former does a nice job  
> for online services without too much effort - the latter can  
> require a LOT of work (although tool support is getting better) and  
> is better suited in formal environments.
> Don't get me wrong, there is sometimes a need for detailed specs  
> and so on, but there is also a need for simple, effective formats,  
> which Microformats do very well.

That is called Modularization and has nothing to do with microformats  
but the choice of structural organization of a technology. What you  
said is valid for *any* specifications. Take the microformats in 5  
years, add all the "modules" (hcard, hreview, 
) etc. And you will  
have a huge specification too.

Karl Dubost - http://www.w3.org/People/karl/
W3C Conformance Manager, QA Activity Lead
   QA Weblog - http://www.w3.org/QA/
      *** Be Strict To Be Cool ***

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