[uf-discuss] RE: microformats for groups and group memberships?

Jim Dalton jim at ere.net
Fri Aug 11 15:09:58 PDT 2006

That makes good sense to me Chris.

I follow your explanation of the URI and how XFN is tied to the concept of
every person having a page (and in our discussion, by extension, how every
group has a page). I also agree that thinking this through when designing
the URI mechanics of a group page would make the rel/XFN approach more

For example, whereas Flickr currently list members for the group
http://www.flickr.com/groups/microformats on the page
http://www.flickr.com/groups_members.gne?id=41758902@N00, it would probably
be a better design approach to list them on
http://www.flickr.com/groups/microformats/members and perhaps handle
pagination via URL queries (e.g. ?page=4)

I guess the flexibility I would like to create or define (possibly) would be
ability to define a members relation to a URI no matter where the actual
list of members resides. Modifying your example to something like:

> <ul class="xoxo" title="http://example.com/somegroup">
>   <li><a href="http://mulettesgalore.com" rel="founder moderator
> member">Joe Bob</a></li>
> </ul>

would mean that I could put a list of members of any group (in the broadest
sense) in any location, and not just on the actual page where that
particular group lives. There would obviously be no claim to reciprocity as
existed in your example, but it would be a generic way to denote that a list
of items a, b, and c, are members of a group x, without limiting such a list
to *only* appearing on the actual group page.

An example that pops into my head is any page where there would be mulitple
membership lists on a single page. For example, a list of attendees (in
hcard of course) to a conference, organized by company (in its own hcard),
allowing the contact information in the company to be related to the
employeees without having to repeat it.

I'll see if I can think of other places, but it seems like I come across
these when coding  every now and then.

It shouldn't be forgotten (by me) that definition lists provide
opportunities in xhtml to define items (dd) within a set (dt), but that too
might be stretching the intention of the dl tag. not sure on that
one...perhaps xoxo does the trick better.


Jim Dalton
jim at ere.net

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Chris Messina [mailto:chris.messina at gmail.com] 
> Sent: Friday, August 11, 2006 5:26 PM
> To: jim at ere.net; Microformats Discuss
> Subject: Re: [uf-discuss] RE: microformats for groups and 
> group memberships?
> On 8/11/06, Jim Dalton <jim at ere.net> wrote:
> > One thing I noticed on the examples I was looking at and 
> posted (aside from
> > almost zero semantic markup) was that member lists often 
> exist in a location
> > separate from the main "group" page. frequently, with long 
> lists of members,
> > the member lists can be spread across multiple pages, often 
> with different
> > URIs then the original group page.
> This is where you have to look at what the representation of the
> group's URI is... which goes to the concept of authority in
> microformats -- The One True Issue.
> Heh. I'm so clever.
> But anyway, the concept of XFN resides on the notion that everyone you
> know has some kind of URI -- typically in the form of a URL. (this is
> why OpenID and XFN are best buddies).
> So if the group has a URL, then we can do some *things* to show
> relationships... on a member's blog they might do this to express
> membership:
> <a href="http://mygroupliveshere.com" rev="founder moderator 
> member">Joe Bob</a>
> At mygroupliveshere.com you might see a member listing, reciprocating
> the relationship (a weak claim):
> <ul class="xoxo">
>   <li><a href="http://mulettesgalore.com" rel="founder moderator
> member">Joe Bob</a></li>
> </ul>
> Now, that's how XFN plays a role.
> You might be able to use something on the group homepage like hAtom to
> contain an hcard to denote the group name and description... And in
> within the hcard entry, you could list the members using XFN. How
> you'd handle paginated member lists, I'm not sure, but I'm guessing
> that you could stem the URL so that all XFN members under a certain
> URL stem could be presumed to be members, like on Flickr:
> http://flickr.com/groups/microformats/members
> or Ma.gnolia:
> http://ma.gnolia.com/groups/microformats/people
> Just some extemporaneous brainstorming.
> Chris
> -- 
> Chris Messina
> Agent Provocateur, Citizen Agency &
>   Open Source Ambassador-at-Large
> Work: http://citizenagency.com
> Blog: http://factoryjoe.com/blog
> Cell: 412 225-1051
> Skype: factoryjoe
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