[uf-discuss] Proposal: species

Matthew Levine matthew at infocraft.com
Sat Sep 23 14:14:33 PDT 2006

On Sep 23, 2006, at 12:54 PM, Andy Mabbett wrote:

> Then again, if you're going to insist that we only develop  
> microformats
> for data types used by virtually everyone, then development work will
> soon cease to be necessary.


The motivation behind creating a Microformat is to address an  
identified *problem* or *need* when XHTML doesn't itself provide the  
solution.  See, in particular, the process [1]: "There must be a  
problem to be solved. No problem, no microformat."

The number of people who currently use species names vs. the number  
of people who currently use geo coordinates is beside the point.   
There was a huge unfulfilled desire of people to add location  
information to resources (as evidenced by the early grass-roots  
efforts in geotagging and 3M+ geotagged photos); this was clearly a  
problem that is appropriately addressed by Microformats.

Similarly for:
* aggregating events and adding events to desktop calendars (hCalendar)
* adding people to address books and quickly finding contact info  
* making it easier to find jobs or employees with appropriate  
qualifications (hResume)

... and so forth, which are problems and needs shared by a  
substantial portion of the web community.

I agree that it would be *great* to have a standard, structured,  
machine-readable species definitions; the question is whether doing  
so will solve an existing problem and allow people to use data in a  
way that previously wasn't possible.  I don't have an answer to that  
question, but I read "esoteric" as "this doesn't address a need  
shared by a substantial portion of the web community."

- Matthew

[1] http://microformats.org/wiki/process

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