process, [citation] (was Re: [uf-new] announcing the hOCR and hBIB microformats)

Michael McCracken michael.mccracken at
Mon Apr 2 12:57:41 PDT 2007

Hi Thomas, I've taken a look at the hBib documentation available at and
I would like to comment on a couple of things:

First of all, the citation microformat process is continuing, just
slowly. The wiki pages are a little confusing if you haven't been
following the mailing list discussions - this reflects a lack of time
to clean it up.

A note at the top of the page says that the citation-formats
page contains proposals for the citation microformat. This isn't the
case - that page is research on existing formats that have been in use

The actual work towards an official citation microformat is going on
in the citation-brainstorming page, in the section "working straw

That working format is currently very close to doing everything that a
bibtex-based format can do. I have code in BibDesk that generates that
working format and reads it in and translates it to bibtex.

I strongly suggest looking there and working with us on the straw
schema instead of doing something different based on BibTeX. If you
produce content that uses the straw schema, the currently shipping
version of BibDesk can read it.

I appreciate the desire to get something working now, but I'd like to
emphasize that we're really close, and if you help, we can have one
working format soon instead of two immediately.


PS, in case it's not familiar, BibDesk is a reference management app
for OS X at

2007/3/28, Tantek Çelik <tantek at>:
> On 3/28/07 12:25 AM, "Thomas Breuel" <tmbdev at> wrote:
> > We're currently developing a new open source OCR system, with a focus on
> > digital library applications (  As part of this, we needed
> > formats for representing both OCR output and bibliographic metadata, and we
> > have defined two new microformats for this purpose: hOCR and hBIB.
> <snip>
> Thomas,
> First of all, welcome, and you have found the right mailing-list to discuss
> new microformats.
> Second, that is great news to hear that you are working on an *open source*
> OCR system.
> Third, the path to defining a new microformat is through the microformats
> process:
> The goals of the process are to ensure that the microformats defined follow
> the microformats principles.  Among those is to reuse existing work, and
> thus minimize reinvention.  In particular, as far as hBIB, note that the
> microformats community has done a significant amount of research and work
> developing a citation microformat.  Start with reading these:
> Finally, I strongly encourage you to both read those pages, and ask any
> questions you have about the process or the citation microformat to date
> here on the list.
> I sincerely hope you join the effort to develop a citation microformat and
> help with your contributions and experience.
> Thanks and welcome,
> Tantek
> _______________________________________________
> microformats-new mailing list
> microformats-new at

Michael McCracken
UCSD CSE PhD Candidate

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