[uf-discuss] proposed title-design-pattern is not backwards compatible, too big of a change

James Craig jcraig at apple.com
Sun Apr 29 02:20:15 PDT 2007

Tantek Çelik wrote:

> Patrick H. Lauke wrote:
>> Forgive my newness to this, but: could you provide some examples of
>> where the generalised title-design-pattern would be problematic?
> Here is a simple (theoretical) example (hReview fragment)
> <span class="rating" title="Three means fair">3</span>

There is no ambiguity here. From the spec, the parser should  
understand that the integer is the machine-readable data. Quoting  
from the Microformats wiki entry for hReview:

"rating. optional. fixed point integer [1.0-5.0], with optional  
alternate worst (default:1.0) and/or best (default:5.0), also fixed  
point integers, and explicit value."

>> Would this noise be a problem for end users, or just for the tools  
>> that
>> consume microformats?
> Neither directly.
> Rather, it would be a problem for the sites who have already published
> microformats, because we would be redefining something they are  
> already
> doing.

We're not suggesting that existing Microformat parsers remove their  
support for abbr-design-pattern. We're suggesting that Microformat  
authors stop using abbr-design-pattern for data not mean to be  
consumed by humans.

I would expect that sites like Technorati and plug-ins like Operator  
and Tails, continue parsing abbr-design-pattern as-is to avoid  
breaking backwards compatibility.

> In otherwords, while *currently*, the use of a title attribute on  
> non-abbr
> microformatted elements has *NO IMPACT* on the microformat  
> semantics of that
> non-abbr element, with the title-design-pattern, those sites that  
> were using
> 'title' for "advisory information" would suddenly find that that  
> "advisory
> information" had been redefined to take the place of a microformat  
> value,
> thus very likely breaking their microformatted content.

Only if that "advisory information" matched the expected data format  
for that particular class. Do you know of any current implementation  
where this would fail? Examples "in the wild" of course. ;-)


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