[uf-discuss] Citation Microformat: LazyWeb for BibTeXperts

Brian Suda brian.suda at gmail.com
Fri Oct 6 05:50:15 PDT 2006

On 10/6/06, Joe Andrieu <joe at andrieu.net> wrote:
> Based on what you've done, I have a process question.
> I, and others, have mentioned the need for a DateAccessed field, which is
> required by several citation standards when referencing online work, e.g.,
> the APA Style Guide [1].  I mentioned that on the Wiki, but didn't add the
> use cases I'm concerned with, until just now.
> I'm assuming that means it isn't included in what you've done so far.

--- correct. From the examples online[1] most (if any) did not have a
dateAccessed. [well one did CiteProc_XHTML_Output[2], which doesn't
fall into the 80/20]. I'm not against exploring dateAccessed, there
might be ways to extract an access date without actually declaring it
explicitly. If you are looking for the DATETIME that you "viewed" the
article, then that could be added by the transforming application
(this might be a bad idea?) and/or use the timestamp that is sent in
HTTP Headers (Last-Modified date - again, maybe a bad idea?)

> Process-wise, how do I contribute such that a dtAccessed field (or
> equivalent) makes it into the final standard?

--- Since we are modeling microformats on real-world examples. It
would be best to document sites that are ACTUALLY explicitly
marking-up dtAccessed. (and/or ways to get at that data implicitly).
When you find examples please add them to the citation-examples page.
It would be great if you could follow the format that already exists
[i spent AGES cleaning that page up :) ]

> The implied schema on the citations-formats page[5] includes the
> dateAccessed, for which I just updated the link to examples so it goes to
> the APA style guide (the old one was invalid).

--- correct. The citations-formats implied schema is from the formats.
IF we were modeling after known formats (which we are not) then that
would be the schema to be used. We ARE modeling after real-world use.
So i took the implied schema from the FORMATS and crossed that with
the implied schema from the EXAMPLES. In that UNION dataAccess fell

> However the implied schemas in your straw format in
> citations-brainstorming[6] don't include dtAccessed and it seems wrong for
> me to simply add it via the wiki.

--- we can add it if we can show that dtAccessed is in use in the real world.

> Certainly, one could make a case that citations to online references fails
> the 80/20 rule, because the vast bulk of current citations are to print
> materials.  However, I think a bit of forward thinking here might be in
> order.

--- i'm certainly adminable to being flexible and open. The open
issues for citations are pretty much all about how to get things
working now while making it open for extending properties at a later
date. We don't need to think too much about a version 2.0 when we
don't even have a 1.0 yet. But yes, not shooting outselves in the foot
or painting our selves into a corner are most desirable.

> As you seem to be the shephard on this effort, what can I do to help with
> this particular issue? (Other than raise a few points here?)

--- one of the other great things about microformats is that the
standards are NOT set in stone. We are now (i feel) in the itteration
phase. We have a straw proposal for the format. I think raising good
point is needed, but more importantly it is time to "get our hands
dirty". If we all go out an have a few "test mark-ups" and convert
that data to BibTeX and see what happens. If it falls flat on it's
face, then we need to re-evaluate the straw proposal. If it does
pretty well, then we look at the mark-up for MODS or Dublic Core, etc.
If that falls down, we update and itterate again.

We can theorize about what SHOULD be in there, but instead i think we
should take the time to see what actually works and what doesn't - fix
the things that don't work and keep moving forward.

> That said, I am a big fan of what you've done so far.  I'm just not sure how
> these remaining details get worked out on the way to a "final" microformat.

--- There are lots of smart people work on this project (smarter than
i) all pitching in. I think if we get some "test cases" and see where
things fall down and itterate from there. We'll never get everything
perfect, we just have to take off our "citation expert" glasses/hats
and agree when we've hit that 80% mark of what IS ACTUALLY being
published on the web.


[1] - http://microformats.org/wiki/citation-examples
[2] - http://microformats.org/wiki/citation-examples#CiteProc_XHTML_Output

brian suda

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