[uf-new] hAudio 'acquire' re-naming (Microformats should use nouns for properties)

Manu Sporny msporny at digitalbazaar.com
Tue May 8 06:53:57 PDT 2007

Martin McEvoy wrote:
>> -----------------------------------------------------------------
>> acquire
>> Changed to be a class instead of a rel-attribute. There is still some
>> concern over the name 'acquire'. Primarily in that it doesn't pluralize
>> cleanly (it is a verb - it should probably be a noun?).
> could we use an adjective? "obtainable"
> <span class="obtainable"...>
> Is it the same thing?

Does that mean we could add 'able' to the end of verbs to solve this
whole noun-verb issue for Microformat property names?


Ultimately, the contents of the 'acquire' element is a link to a
process. It may be a direct link to a download, but most of the
audio-info-examples contain a link to a checkout process of some kind.
It is difficult to get away from verbs since a 'process' is conducive to
being identified by a verb.

Looking through all of the drafts on the Microformats site - all
property names are nouns. Whether this happened by accident or was
deliberate, there is a pattern emerging in the Microformats and that is:

"We should use nouns for describing Microformat properties. Verbs
describe actions, and actions don't describe data. Microformats are
about describing data, not specifying actions on the data."

Rather than try and identify the process, let's focus on the end result
of the process (a file sitting on your hard drive that you acquired from
the Internet). Here are the rename suggestions so far for hAudio 'acquire':


There have been two votes for source (Frances, Paul), one for obtainable
(Martin), and one for representation (Manu).

I'm pulling my support for 'acquire' (acquisition, acquirable) and
placing it behind 'representation'. Representation is the root term for
most of the download cases that we care about (audio, video, images)
[1]. It can be re-used for audio, video and images Microformats. The
examples support the word choice - "after following the process that is
linked to, you will have a proper /representation/ of the work described
by the hAudio/hVideo/hImage Microformat."

Please show your support for this term, or if you do not support it
please note why and suggest an alternative word and argument.

-- manu


More information about the microformats-new mailing list