[uf-discuss] use existing before proposing new

Tantek Ç elik tantek at cs.stanford.edu
Sun Sep 24 14:19:54 PDT 2006


On 9/24/06 1:38 PM, "Scott Reynen" <scott at randomchaos.com> wrote:

> I think you might be underestimating the difficulty of convincing
> people to use microformats.  But I'll be happy to find I was wrong
> come adoption time.

Scott, this is an excellent point, and something I have *often* found in
standards communities.

I would even say that the majority of folks working on standards *greatly*
underestimate the barriers to adoption that they are either face, or, worse,
creating by making standards more complicated than the 80/20 market really
cares to even bother with.

I've been brainstorming ideas about how to make more folks working on
standards (in particular, microformats) aware of these barriers to adoption,
and have come up with very few ideas.

One in particular though has been stuck in my head, and this is as good a
time as any to bring it up (I don't think I brought it up before, but I've
privately bounced it off a few folks).

Change the process such that:

Before proposing even the assumed *need* for a microformat, what if we
require that the proposer *first* demonstrate an understanding of current
microformats by requiring that they use/adopt existing microformats on their
web pages whereever applicable (e.g. hCards for people/orgs, hCalendar for
events etc.), and only *after* they've actually used existing microformats
as such, permit the proposal of new microformats?

IMHO this would cut down on "theoretical" microformats proposals, and at the
same time would help provide first-hand microformats authoring
experience/expertise to those that would otherwise be proposing
microformats, so they understand exactly what they would be asking of



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