[uf-new] grouping-examples (was: collection-design-pattern proposal)

Manu Sporny msporny at digitalbazaar.com
Thu Apr 26 07:33:28 PDT 2007

Changing the title of this thread as it seemed to send the wrong
impression of what we were trying to accomplish. Here's the problem

It is useful to understand the relationship between objects on a
website. A blogger may want to describe several different objects on a
web page and group them explicitly. It is important that the structure
of the page not affect this grouping as network relationships are often
not hierarchical (HTML is always hierarchical).

Where an object resides in a network of relationships can clarify its
purpose. For example, an audio album can have a number of audio tracks.
It is desirable that the tracks and the album can be associated with one
another without needing to be hierarchically grouped. The same goes for
chapters in a DVD movie, sections of a podcast, and a set of geographic

Grouping relationships are fundamental to how we understand object

The examples page can be found here (with 48 examples):


Definitions for understanding how the examples are classified:

    *  unordered - Unordered grouping is a type of grouping where the
items in the group have no particular order or are not numbered in any
way. These lists can be marked by <ul> HTML tags, but do not have to be.

    * ordered - Ordered grouping is when items in a group have a very
clear order. The easiest way to differentiate ordered grouping is if the
items are numbered. These lists are almost always marked by <ol>

    * sparse - Sparse grouping means that the items in the group are
spread over the entire page and are not contained in a single list.
Sparse groups are also created when items of the same type are
interspersed, but don't belong to the same group. For example, an
example of two sparse groups would be birds and fish: crow, dolphin,
dove, shark, pigeon.

    * non-sparse - Non-sparse grouping means that the items in the group
are very close together on the page and are usually encapsulated in a
single list. For example: crow, dove, pigeon.

Analysis so far can be found here:


Here are the results of the analysis:

This analysis was performed on April 23rd on all of the grouping
examples listed on the page at that point.

Total examples: 48

    * 100% of examples contained some form of grouping
    * 67%: ordered
    * 65%: unordered
    * 62%: non-sparse
    * 54%: sparse

If there are any other "grouping" example /categories/ that anybody on
here can think of, please list them on the examples page or send them to
me so that I can put them on the examples page. Any and all links would

-- manu

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