[uf-discuss] Documentation of machine-data and value-excerption

Ben Ward lists at ben-ward.co.uk
Fri Jun 6 12:31:02 PDT 2008

Hi everyone,

Over the past few weeks I've been making efforts to document some of  
the greyer areas of microformats and better specify how they behave;  
machine-data and value-excerpting.

Machine data in microformats is where we specify a fixed data format  
(such as dates and geo), or fixed enumeration of fields (such as  
telephone ‘type’ in hCard).
In the past it's  been rather disparate, but I've now documented it  
all at http://microformats.org/wiki/machine-data
— Thanks to Toby Inkster who's also made contributions to that page.

I hope that makes a useful reference for machine data usage in µf in  
general, and also as documentation of how to validly and semantically  
include such data in pages.

People who find recurring issue with some uses of the ABBR-design- 
pattern should definitely read the machine-data page, as it documents  
*all* of the currently supported and implemented ways of embedding  
data in pages, including *but not limited to* ABBR.

Which leads nicely into the second part, which is that we're making an  
effort on the microformats-dev mailing list to specify the parsing  
behaviour of value-excerption (class="value", known as ‘value- 
excerpting’ in hCard). Whilst it was originally just part of hCard's  
TEL field, it's actually supported in parsers generally.

http://microformats.org/wiki/value-excerption-pattern explains the  
uses and better documents the parsing behaviour. That documentation is  
ongoing, but since it's already implemented, I hope what we've got so  
far is useful.

Alongside the dedicated page for value-excerption, there's a proper - 
issues page for the pattern, so if you have bugs or issues to raise  
with it, please raise them on http://microformats.org/wiki/value-excerption-pattern-issues 
, then we can move through them in a nicely structured manner.

Now that the pages are well structured, wider feedback is encouraged.  
Please add issues to value-excerpting where you see them, and check  
the microformats-dev archive (http://microformats.org/discuss/mail/microformats-dev/ 
) for what's already been discussed.



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