[uf-discuss] WordPress and hAtom: Just for themers?

Chris Casciano chris at placenamehere.com
Tue Aug 8 13:24:56 PDT 2006

On Aug 8, 2006, at 3:44 PM, Chris Messina wrote:

> Kind of interesting thinking from Matt, eh?
> Is it a pipedream to think that hAtom, widely deployed, can be a
> sister of RSS and ATOM? Or will it only be a refuge for geeks?
> Matt downplays its value as a syndication format and is more
> interested in having a consistent classbase for themers... is that
> where the value really is for blog platforms?
> Chris

For the short to mid term .. in a word.. YES

The user side tools being what they are I don't really see much of an  
advantage of using hatom+some server side processing over existing  
server side Atom processing tools -- especially if they already exist  
in the application. Also, in some cases the separate Atom output / 
view of the data is better, particularly if you're one of the  
display:none is evil folks or there is a lot of other things going on  
in a fully generated HTML page whose processing can be avoided if  
there's a separate feed mechanism.

The short term win for hAtom is two fold:

(a) using standard semantics across sites -- for both themeing and  
other processing (maybe it'll make google blog search smarter.. who  
knows) -- not to mention a win that isn't talked about much around  
here and that is education / instruction... "lets build an simple  
blog app in chapter 4"

(b) in pages or applications that otherwise don't already have an  
Atom feed component -- be it new apps, hand written pages, or even  
content stuck in arcane CMSs where there's no hope of atom 1.0. Its  
easier to output 1 document and maintain 1 template and send the  
content trouh

Longer term I can see feed readers getting better and being able to  
crunch full html documents so there will be more upside to hAtom as a  
"sister" of RSS and Atom, but due to the view & processing concerns I  
mentioned I don't think it would totally replace Atom for feeds of  
content that's already on the web.

This is also pretty much how i've broken down ChunkySoup.net at this  
point -- all the blog pages - though marked up with hAtom point users  
to the more conventional atom feed that Textpattern offers including  
managing dates, new posts, edits, comment feeds, or whatever else it  
does for me -- so the hAtom is only there for styling and doing the  
RightThingTM semantically. And all the stuff not run through  
textpattern I'm leveraging the ability to go from hAtom -> Atom.

[ Chris Casciano ]
[ chris at placenamehere.com ] [ http://placenamehere.com ]

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