[uf-discuss] Today, Tomorrow, and Someday Problems

Tantek Celik tantek at cs.stanford.edu
Thu Sep 4 18:41:35 PDT 2008

Martin, Manu, a brief bit of history. I left the W3C HTML WG and gave up on XHTML2 because I realized it was not "tomorrow" work, but rather "someday" work, or maybe even "never" work, became increasingly frustrated that the HTML WG as a whole ignored their necessary "today/tomorrow" work [1], and eventually decided that it was time that someone started to experiment with the broad semantic HTML *today* work being done by modern web designers, solving today's real world web problems, with shared vocabularies based on existing standards. I met up with Kevin Marks who had similar ideas and microformats was started.

That was years ago (2003-2004). In the meantime, microformats adoption has taken off much faster than any of us could have hoped for, while XHTML2 is largely ignored. XHTML2 wasn't a "tomorrow" technology 5 years ago [1], and it still isn't today. You could say there may be some bitterness/resentment/jealousy/denial about that.

Anyway, I'm largely ignoring it, as I'm trying to do my best to ignore the "microformats vs RDFa" baiting / artificial-dichotomy that so many have pursued. We have too much productive work to do to be distracted by such drama.



[1] http://tantek.com/log/2003/01.html#L20030114

-----Original Message-----
From: Martin McEvoy <martin at weborganics.co.uk>

Date: Fri, 05 Sep 2008 01:47:54 
To: Microformats Discuss<microformats-discuss at microformats.org>
Subject: Re: [uf-discuss] Today, Tomorrow, and Someday Problems

Manu Sporny wrote:
> Interesting blog post by Shane McCarron of XHTML2 fame. He has been
> involved in the standards community since 1985. His name is on just
> about every major HTML standard to come out of the W3C - if you use HTML
> 4.01, XHTML1.0, XHTML 1.1, or will use XHTML2 (to name a few), you're
> using specs that he had a direct hand in creating or maintaining.
> It's interesting to see his take on how the W3C and the Microformats
> community fits into the ecosystem of solving the problems of today,
> tomorrow and "someday". The post discusses Microformats and RDFa:
> http://halindrome.blogspot.com/2008/09/why-we-do-what-we-do.html
Thanks Manu for an interesting post, I have made some comments ;-)

I am a bit worried  about Shane's other post,


> Unlike microformats, the idiom for annotating your content does not 
> conflict with the normal semantics of (X)HTML (e.g., the class 
> attribute, the title attribute, and abbr).

Sound's like a declaration of war from a community who wants to bring 
Microformats to the fold.

> Why would you want to use RDFa? For the same reason you want to use 
> microformats. Because you care about machines understanding what is on 
> your page, not just humans.

Is it not the other way around in the microformats community?

Best Wishes

Martin McEvoy
> -- manu
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> microformats-discuss mailing list
> microformats-discuss at microformats.org
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