[uf-discuss] Microformats vs XML

Tantek Ç elik tantek at cs.stanford.edu
Sun Apr 30 18:56:21 PDT 2006

On 4/30/06 6:20 PM, "Karl Dubost" <karl at w3.org> wrote:

> Le 06-04-30 à 07:36, Benjamin Carlyle a écrit :
>> The short answer of when to use microformats is as follows:
>> You are writing some html that contains some useful human-readable
>> information. You say to yourself: I would like to mark this up with
>> some
>> classes now for styling. You look up the relevant microformat, and you
>> pull in the standard names. You don't have to make your own up, and
>> now
>> your page is machine-readable too. Bonus!
> And your page is easily indexable for Marketing profiler. -1 :)


Karl, with all due respect, this line of reasoning makes no sense.

It is widely acknowledged that the more semantic the markup the better, for
search engines, for accessibility, for styling, etc. etc.

Are you saying that "Marketing profiler" is a reason that semantic markup is
a bad idea?  

If so, this is hardly unique to microformats, and would apply equally to any
attempt at semantic XML or RDF etc. and thus is moot in any comparison of
microformats vs. XML.

> And you page is easily indexable to create you own index of
> information ala Mark Pilgrim. +1

Indeed.  Controlling your own data is a big plus.

> And your page has class names in English when you are using another
> language. -1

It is interesting that you should bring this up, because this is an
ADVANTAGE of using microformats over POX (Plain Old XML), because of the
reason I pointed out in my previous email on this subject:

the microformat use of the class attribute permits *multiple* class names,
whereas XML elements may have only *one* name.

Thus with microformats, you may use both the standard microformat class
names, AND class names in your own non-English language if you wish:

<span class="family-name soyad">Çelik</span>

("soyad" is Turkish for family-name)

Whereas with POX markup standards, you are relegated to only using the
element names from the spec.


If you care about using non-English languages for semantic markup, this is a
+1 for microformats, since they permit you to continue to do so, and -1 for
XML based standards, which typically use English-only element names.



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