microformats2

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<entry-title>microformats2</entry-title> Welcome to the microformats2 home page.

Summary

Microformats2 is the simplest way to markup structured information in HTML. Microformats2 improves ease of use and implementation for both authors (publishers) and developers (parser implementers).

Microformats2 replaces and supersedes both classic microformats, as well as incorporates lessons learned from microdata and rdfa.

simple microformats 2 examples

Here are a few simple microformats2 examples along with canonical JSON.

person example

  • Simple person reference:
<span class="h-card">Frances Berriman</span>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Frances Berriman"] 
    }
  }]
}



hyperlinked person

  • Simple hyperlinked person reference
<a class="h-card" href="http://benward.me">Ben Ward</a>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Ben Ward"],
      "url": ["http://benward.me"]
    }
  }]
}



hyperlinked person image

  • Simple hyperlinked person image
<a class="h-card" href="http://rohit.khare.org/">
 <img alt="Rohit Khare"
      src="https://s3.amazonaws.com/twitter_production/profile_images/53307499/180px-Rohit-sq_bigger.jpg" />
</a>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Rohit Khare"],
      "url": ["http://rohit.khare.org/"],
      "photo": ["https://s3.amazonaws.com/twitter_production/profile_images/53307499/180px-Rohit-sq_bigger.jpg"]
    }
  }]
}

Additional simple cases details in microformats2 implied properties.



detailed person example

  • More detailed person
<div class="h-card">
  <img class="u-photo" alt="photo of Mitchell"
       src="https://webfwd.org/content/about-experts/300.mitchellbaker/mentor_mbaker.jpg"/>
  <a class="p-name u-url"
     href="http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/" 
    >Mitchell Baker</a>
 (<a class="u-url" 
     href="https://twitter.com/MitchellBaker"
    >@MitchellBaker</a>)
  <span class="p-org">Mozilla Foundation</span>
  <p class="p-note">
    Mitchell is responsible for setting the direction and scope of the Mozilla Foundation and its activities.
  </p>
  <span class="p-category">Strategy</span>
  <span class="p-category">Leadership</span>
</div>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "photo": ["https://webfwd.org/content/about-experts/300.mitchellbaker/mentor_mbaker.jpg"],
      "name": ["Mitchell Baker"],
      "url": [
        "http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/",
        "https://twitter.com/MitchellBaker"
      ],
      "org": ["Mozilla Foundation"],
      "note": ["Mitchell is responsible for setting the direction and scope of the Mozilla Foundation and its activities."],
      "category": [
        "Strategy",
        "Leadership"
      ]
    }
  }]
}



Notes:

  1. The JSON "type" uses the full microformat root class name (e.g. "h-card") for consistent identification.
  2. all properties are optional and syntactically plural with parsed values provided in document order; particular microformats (and applications there-of) may apply specific/singular semantics to first value of a property.

microformats2 design

microformats2 has the following key design aspects:

Prefixes for class names
All microformats class names use prefixes. Prefixes are syntax independent from vocabularies, which are developed separately.
  • h-* for root class names (e.g. h-card)
  • p-* for plain text properties (e.g. p-name)
  • u-* for URL properties (e.g. u-photo)
  • dt-* for date/time properties (e.g. dt-bday)
  • e-* for embedded markup properties (e.g. e-note)

See prefix naming conventions for more details.

Flat sets of optional properties
All microformats consist of a root, and a collection of properties. Hierarchical data is represented with nested microformats, typically as property values themselves. Properties are all optional and potentially multivalued (applications needing a singular semantic may use first instance).
Single class markup for common uses
Common simple markup patterns require only a single microformat root class name, which parsers use to find a few generic properties: name, url, photo. The simple microformats2 examples above demonstrate these.




Parsing each prefix (including generating canonical JSON) is detailed step-by-step in:

Note: Most properties are specified and used with a single specific prefix (or occasionally two or three) that is self-evident from context. However, any parsing prefix can be used with any property, especially if you find a good reason to do so!

v2 vocabularies

Status: draft. Please review and provide feedback in #microformats on freenode.

See below for vocabulary summaries.

h-adr

Main article: h-adr

The h-adr microformat is for marking up structured locations such as addresses, physical and/or postal. This is an update to adr.

root class name: h-adr
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-adr

properties:

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-adr" is found, don't look for an "adr" on the same element.

compat root class name: adr
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • post-office-box
  • extended-address
  • street-address
  • locality
  • region
  • postal-code
  • country-name

h-card

Main article: h-card

The h-card microformat is for marking up people and organizations. This is an update to hCard 1.0.

root class name: h-card
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-card

properties:

  • p-name
  • p-honorific-prefix
  • p-given-name
  • p-additional-name
  • p-family-name
  • p-sort-string
  • p-honorific-suffix
  • p-nickname
  • u-email
  • u-logo
  • u-photo
  • u-url
  • u-uid
  • p-category
  • p-adr
  • p-post-office-box
  • p-extended-address
  • p-street-address
  • p-locality
  • p-region
  • p-postal-code
  • p-country-name
  • p-label
  • p-geo or u-geo with a RFC 5870 geo: URL, new in vcard4 (vCard 4 RFC 6350)
  • p-latitude
  • p-longitude
  • p-altitude - new in vcard4 (vCard 4 RFC 6350 from RFC 5870)
  • p-tel
  • p-note
  • dt-bday
  • u-key
  • p-org
  • p-job-title - previously 'title' in hCard, disambiguated.
  • p-role
  • u-impp per RFC 4770, new in vcard4 (vCard 4 RFC 6350)
  • p-sex new in vcard4 (vCard 4 RFC 6350)
  • p-gender-identity new in vcard4 (vCard 4 RFC 6350)
  • dt-anniversary new in vcard4 (vCard 4 RFC 6350)
  • ...

Reserved properties: (properties not used much (if at all) in practice)

  • p-organization-name
  • p-organization-unit
  • p-tz
  • dt-rev
  • ...

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-card" is found, don't look for a "vcard" on the same element.

compat root class name: vcard
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • fn - parse as p-name
  • honorific-prefix
  • given-name
  • additional-name
  • family-name
  • honorific-suffix
  • nickname
  • email - parse as u-
  • logo - parse as u-
  • photo - parse as u-
  • url - parse as u-
  • uid - parse as u-
  • category
  • adr - parse as p-adr h-adr including compat root class adr
  • extended-address
  • street-address
  • locality
  • region
  • postal-code
  • country-name
  • label
  • geo - parse as p-geo h-geo including compat root class geo
  • latitude
  • longitude
  • tel
  • note
  • bday - parse as dt-
  • key - parse as u-
  • org
  • organization-name
  • organization-unit
  • title - parse as p-job-title
  • role
  • ...

Reserved: (backward compat properties that parsers MAY implement, if they do, they MUST implement in this way:

  • tz
  • rev - parse as dt-
  • ...

Note: use of 'value' within 'tel' should be automatically handled by the support of the Value Class Pattern. And for now, the 'type' subproperty of 'tel' is dropped/ignored. If there is demonstrable documented need for additional tel types (e.g. fax), we can introduce new flat properties as needed (e.g. p-tel-fax).

h-entry

Main article: h-entry

The h-entry microformat is for marking up syndicatable content such as blog posts, notes, articles, comments, photos and similar. This is an update to hAtom 0.1.

root class name: h-entry
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-entry

properties:

  • p-name (was p-entry-title, see issues)
  • p-summary (was p-entry-summary, see issues)
  • e-content (was e-entry-content, see issues)
  • dt-published
  • dt-updated
  • p-author
  • p-category
  • u-url
  • u-uid
  • p-geo
  • p-latitude
  • p-longitude

This is an update to hAtom 0.1.

Brainstorming:

The following properties are proposed additions to h-entry above and beyond what hAtom (or Atom) provides, based on various existing link preview markup conventions:

  • u-photo
  • u-audio - consider special u- parsing rules for <audio>
  • u-video - consider special u- parsing rules for <video>
  • u-in-reply-to - for links to other posts that this post is a reply to (comment regarding, etc.)

Backward compatibility:

(*)hAtom-specific implementations that perform custom display or translation (e.g. to Atom XML) SHOULD prefer p-name over p-entry-title, and use p-entry-title value(s) as a fallback if there is no p-name.

For hAtom backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-entry" is found, don't look for a "hentry" on the same element.

compat root class name: hentry
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • entry-title - parse as p-name
  • entry-summary
  • entry-content - parse as e-
  • published - parse as dt-
  • updated - parse as dt-
  • author - including compat root vcard in the absence of h-card
  • category
  • geo - parse as p-geo h-geo including compat root geo
  • latitude
  • longitude
  • ...

FAQ:

  • What is the p-name of a note?
    • A few options, from simplest to most detailed.
      • same as the p-content/e-content property.
      • same as the title element on the note permalink post page. When publishing a note on its own permalink post page, the contents of the note are likely abbreviated for the title of the page. The same abbreviation can be used for the p-name.
      • first sentence of the p-content/e-content property. It may be better for syndication and link-preview purposes to provide just the first sentence of the note as the p-name. Similarly if only a portion of the content is syndicated to other sites, that portion can be marked up as the p-summary.
  • ...

Resolved Issues:

  • 2012-245 Resolved. See 2012-243 IRC discussion/consensus for:
    • Use p-summary instead of p-entry-summary. The historical semantic of "entry-summary" is not different from "summary" in any significant (or discernible way). Collapsing the two will simplify the overall microformats2 vocabularies further. In microformats2, entry-summary is no more.
    • Use e-content instead of e-entry-content. Same point and advantage. In microformats2, entry-content is no more.
    • drop p-entry-title. Unnecessary and subsumed by "p-name". Would consider move to backward compat only if cases are presented - known publishing uses are expected to be updated shortly.

h-event

Main article: h-event

The h-event microformat is for marking up events. This is an update to hCalendar 1.0.

root class name: h-event
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-event

properties:

  • p-name
  • p-summary(*)
  • dt-start
  • dt-end
  • dt-duration
  • p-description
  • u-url
  • p-category
  • p-location
  • p-geo
  • p-latitude
  • p-longitude
  • ...

This is an update to hCalendar 1.0.

(*)hCalendar-specific implementations that perform custom display or translation (e.g. to iCalendar .ics) SHOULD prefer p-name over p-summary, and use p-summary value(s) as a fallback if there is no p-name.

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-event" is found, don't look for a "vevent" on the same element.

compat root class name: vevent
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • summary - parse as p-name
  • dtstart - parse as dt-start
  • dtend - parse as dt-end
  • duration - parse as dt-duration
  • description
  • url - parse as u-
  • category
  • location - including compat root vcard in the absence of h-card, and compat root adr in the absence of h-adr
  • geo - parse as p-geo h-geo including compat root geo
  • latitude
  • longitude
  • ...

h-geo

Main article: h-geo

The h-geo microformat is for marking up WGS84 geophysical coordinates. This is an update to Geo.

root class name: h-geo
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-geo

properties:

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-geo" is found, don't look for an "geo" on the same element.

compat root class name: geo properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • latitude
  • longitude

h-item

Main article: h-item

The h-item microformat is for marking up the item of an h-review or h-product. This is an update to part of hReview 0.4 (in progress).

root class name: h-item
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-item

properties:

  • p-name
  • u-photo
  • u-url

Note: in practice, due to the microformats2 implied property rules, it is expected that most uses of "h-item" won't require any explicit properties at all (since microformats2 parsers will infer name, photo, and url properties from the structure of the element with "h-item" and its contained content/elements if any).

h-product

Main article: h-product

The h-product microformat is for marking up products. This is an update to hProduct.

root class name: h-product
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-product

properties:

  • p-name - name of the product
  • u-photo - photo of the product
  • p-brand - manufacturer, can also be a nested h-card
  • p-category - freeform categories or tags applied to the item by the reviewer
  • e-description
  • u-url - URL of the product
  • u-identifier - includes type (e.g. mpn, upc, isbn, issn, sn, vin, sku etc.) and value.
  • p-review - a review of the product, can also be a nested h-review
  • p-price - retail price of the product

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-product" is found, don't look for an "hproduct" on the same element.

compat root class name: hproduct
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • fn - parse as p-name
  • photo - parse as u-
  • brand
  • category
  • description
  • identifier - parse as u-
  • url - parse as u-
  • review - including compat root class hreview in the absence of h-review
  • price

Note: hProduct has at least one experimental property which has real world adoption due to Google Search and Microsoft Bing Search Engine search support of hProduct. Currently this is: price

h-recipe

Main article: h-recipe

The h-recipe microformat is for marking up food recipes. This is an update to hRecipe 0.22.

root class name: h-recipe
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-recipe

properties:

  • p-name - the name of the recipe
  • p-ingredient - describes one or more ingredients used in the recipe.
  • p-yield - Specifies the quantity produced by the recipe, like how many persons it satisfyies
  • e-instructions - the method of the recipe.
  • dt-duration - the time it takes to prepare the meal described by the recipe.
  • u-photo - an accompanying image

Experimental properties with wide adoption

  • p-summary - provides a short summary or introduction
  • p-author - the person who wrote the recipe with h-card
  • dt-published - the date the recipe was published
  • p-nutrition - nutritional information like calories, fat, dietary fiber etc.
  • ...

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-recipe" is found, don't look for an "hrecipe" on the same element.

compat root class name: hrecipe
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • fn - parse as p-name
  • ingredient
  • yield
  • instructions - parse as e-
  • duration - parse as dt-
  • photo - parse as u-
  • summary
  • author - including compat root vcard in the absence of h-card
  • nutrition

Note: hRecipe 0.22 has a number of experimental properties which have real world adoption due to Google Search recipe search support of hRecipe. These are: summary, author, published and nutrition

h-resume

Main article: h-resume

The h-resume microformat is for marking up resumes. This is an update to hResume.

root class name: h-resume
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-resume

properties:

  • p-summary - overview of qualifications and objectives
  • p-contact - current contact info in an h-card
  • p-education - an education h-calendar event, years, nested h-card of the school, location.
  • p-experience - a job or other professional experience h-calendar event, years, nested h-card of the organization, location, job-title.
  • p-skill - a skill or ability, optionally including level and/or duration of experience
  • p-affiliation - an affiliation with an h-card organization

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-resume" is found, don't look for an "hresume" on the same element.

compat root class name: hresume
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • summary
  • contact - including compat root vcard in the absence of h-card
  • education - including compat root vevent in the absence of h-event
  • experience - including compat root vevent in the absence of h-event
  • skill
  • affiliation - including compat root vcard in the absence of h-card

Note: skill has a proposed expansion into competency with explicit summary, rating and/or duration components. Based on existing real world adoption, we should consider an h-competency vocabulary with p-summary, p-rating, and dt-duration properties.

h-review

Main article: h-review

The h-review microformat is for marking up reviews. This is an update to hReview 0.4 (in progress). See also h-item.

root class name: h-review
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-review

properties:

  • p-name - name of the review
  • p-item - thing been reviewed i.e. business or person (h-card), event (h-event), place (h-adr or h-geo), product (h-product), website, url, or other item (h-item).
  • p-reviewer - person who authored the review
  • dt-reviewed - date time of when the review was written
  • p-rating - value from 1-5 indicating a rating for the item (5 best).
  • p-best - define best rating value. can be numerically lower than worst.
  • p-worst - define worst rating value. can be numerically higher than best.
  • e-description - the full text written evaluation and opinion of the reviewer
  • p-category - freeform categories or tags applied to the item by the reviewer
  • u-url - URL of the review

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-review" is found, don't look for an "hreview" on the same element.

compat root class name: hreview
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • summary parse as p-name
  • fn - parse as p-name of the item being reviewed (p-item h-item p-name)
  • photo - parse as u-photo of the item being reviewed (p-item h-item u-photo)
  • url - parse as u-url of the item being reviewed (p-item h-item u-url)
  • reviewer - including compat root vcard in the absence of h-card
  • dtreviewed - parse as dt-
  • rating
  • best
  • worst
  • description - parse as e-
  • rel="tag" - parse as p-category
  • rel="self bookmark" - parse as u-url. note that rel attribute value is treated as a space separated set, thus any presence of "self" and "bookmark" within such a set in a rel value is accepted.

Note: The hReview 0.4 (in progress) format has three properties which make use of rel attribute, these are tag, permalink (via the self and bookmark values) and license. Microformats 2 parsers SHOULD map these URLs into the page scoped rel collection.

h-review-aggregate

Main article: h-review-aggregate

The h-review-aggregate microformat is for marking up aggregate reviews of a single item. This is an update to hReview-aggregate 0.2. See also h-item.

root class name: h-review-aggregate
profile/itemtype: http://microformats.org/profile/h-review-aggregate

properties:

  • p-name - name of the review
  • p-item - thing been reviewed i.e. business or person (h-card), event (h-event), place (h-adr or h-geo), product (h-product), website, url, or other item (h-item).
  • p-rating - value from 1-5 indicating average rating for the item (5 best).
  • p-best - define best rating value. can be numerically lower than worst.
  • p-worst - define worst rating value. can be numerically higher than best.
  • p-count - number of reviews aggregated.
  • p-votes - number of reviewers who have rated the product, thus contributing to the average rating.
  • p-category - freeform categories or tags applied to the item by the reviewer
  • u-url - URL of the review

For backward compatibility, microformats 2 parsers SHOULD detect the following root class name and property names. A microformats 2 parser may use existing microformats Microformats Parsers to extract these properties. If an "h-review-aggregate" is found, don't look for an "hreview-aggregate" on the same element.

compat root class name: hreview-aggregate
properties: (parsed as p- plain text unless otherwise specified)

  • summary parse as p-name
  • fn - parse as p-name of the item being reviewed (p-item h-item p-name)
  • photo - parse as u-photo of the item being reviewed (p-item h-item u-photo)
  • url - parse as u-url of the item being reviewed (p-item h-item u-url)
  • rating
  • best
  • worst
  • count
  • votes
  • rel="tag" - parse as p-category
  • rel="self bookmark" - parse as u-url. note that rel attribute value is treated as a space separated set, thus any presence of "self" and "bookmark" within such a set in a rel value is accepted.


v2 vocab notes

Notes:

  • All v2 vocabularies are defined as flat lists of properties of an object/item, and thus can be used in microformats-2 syntax as shown, or in microdata items, or RDFa. The microformats-2 property parsing prefixes "p-", "u-", "dt-", "e-" are omitted when using defined properties in microdata itemprop and RDFa property as those syntaxes have their own element-specific parsing rules.
  • Profile URLs are provided for use with the HTML4 profile attribute, microdata itemtype attribute, and RDFa vocab & typeof attributes (though the latter requires slicing off the trailing segment of the profile for the typeof attribute, and leaving the rest in vocab).
  • microformats 2 properties may also be explicitly bound as URIs using rel profile, the HTML5 profile attribute attribute proposal, or an HTML5 'vocab' attribute instead. If URI bound terms are important to you, please express interest on rel profile, HTML5 profile attribute, or contribute to an html5-vocab draft.

v2 vocab to-do

To do:

  • write a simple tutorial for creating/getting started with microformats-2 markup for new content
  • examples in each h-* spec listed above of how to embed other microformats in them
  • actual profile documents at http://microformats.org/profile/h-* URLs mentioned above.
  • Provide any necessary microdata-specific language as needed (e.g. to be comparably understandable to the sample vCard4/hCard1 microdata vocabulary. Also provide any necessary RDFa-specific language as needed. Both preferably in a generic vocabulary-independent way.
  • write a porting guide mapping v1 property -> v2 property
    • use-case: simple search/replace in templates (e.g. in case web author doesn't remember existing microformats vocabs and where they used them).
    • advise using *both* in existing templates (e.g. in case some CSS depends on the existing microformats)
  • analyzie/document how well the microformats2 model and vocabularies satisfy the use-cases used to design/create microdata.

combining microformats

Since microformats 2 uses simple flat sets of properties for each microformat, multiple microformats are combined to indicate additional structure.

h-event location h-card

Events commonly have venue information with additional structure, like address information. For example:

<div class="h-event">
  <a class="p-name u-url" href="http://indiewebcamp.com/2012">
    IndieWebCamp 2012
  </a>
  from <time class="dt-start">2012-06-30</time> 
  to <time class="dt-end">2012-07-01</time> at 
  <span class="p-location h-card">
    <a class="p-name p-org u-url" href="http://geoloqi.com/">
      Geoloqi
    </a>, 
    <span class="p-street-address">920 SW 3rd Ave. Suite 400</span>, 
    <span class="p-locality">Portland</span>, 
    <abbr class="p-region" title="Oregon">OR</abbr>
  </span>
</div>

The nested h-card used to structure the p-location of the h-event is represented as a structured value for "location" in the JSON, which has an additional key, "value" that represents the plain text version parsed from the p-location.

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-event"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["IndieWebCamp 2012"],
      "url": ["http://indiewebcamp.com/2012"],
      "start": ["2012-06-30"],
      "end": ["2012-07-01"],
      "location": [{
        "value": "Geoloqi",
        "type": ["h-card"],
        "properties": {
          "name": ["Geoloqi"],
          "org": ["Geoloqi"],
          "url": ["http://geoloqi.com/"],
          "street-address": ["920 SW 3rd Ave. Suite 400"],
          "locality": ["Portland"],
          "region": ["Oregon"]
        }
      }]
    }
  }]
}

Questions:

  • Should the nested hCard be present also as a top-level item in the JSON? - Tantek 02:02, 19 June 2012 (UTC)
    • My current (2012-243) leaning is no. - Tantek 18:53, 30 August 2012 (UTC)
    • If so, how do we avoid expansion of the JSON geometrically proportional to the depth of microformat nesting? (Or do we not worry about it?)
  • Should there be a canonical hierarchical JSON and a canonical flattened JSON? - Tantek 02:02, 19 June 2012 (UTC)
    • My current (2012-243) leaning is no, we stick with one canonical JSON for uf2 which is hierarchical. - Tantek 18:53, 30 August 2012 (UTC)
    • If so, should the flattened JSON have references from properties to nested microformats that have been pushed to the top level per flattening? - Tantek 02:02, 19 June 2012 (UTC)
      • If so, what convention does/do JSON follow for such synthetic local reference identifiers? - Tantek 02:02, 19 June 2012 (UTC)

Notes:

  • The 'location' value reflects the visible text of its element, including spaces and punctuation, as well as the state abbreviation 'OR'. The 'h-card' property values are only what is marked up, and thus include structure values without extra punctuation, and the state takes the expanded form from the title attribute of its <abbr> element.

h-card org h-card

People often publish information general to their company rather than specific to them, in which case, they may wish to encapsulate that in separately nested microformat. E.g. here is a simple h-card example with org property:

Mitchell Baker (Mozilla Foundation)

with source:

<div class="h-card">
  <a class="p-name u-url"
     href="http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/" 
    >Mitchell Baker</a> 
  (<span class="p-org">Mozilla Foundation</span>)
</div>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Mitchell Baker"],
      "url": ["http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/"],
      "org": ["Mozilla Foundation"]
    }
  }]
}

Sometimes such organization affiliations are hyperlinked to the website of the organization:

Mitchell Baker (Mozilla Foundation)

You can mark that up with a nested h-card:

<div class="h-card">
  <a class="p-name u-url"
     href="http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/" 
    >Mitchell Baker</a> 
  (<a class="p-org h-card" 
      href="http://mozilla.org/"
     >Mozilla Foundation</a>)
</div>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Mitchell Baker"],
      "url": ["http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/"],
      "org": [{
        "value": "Mozilla Foundation",
        "type": ["h-card"],
        "properties": {
          "name": ["Mozilla Foundation"],
          "url": ["http://mozilla.org/"]
        }
      }]
    }
  }]
}

Note: the nested h-card has implied 'name' and 'url' properties, just like any other root-class-name-only h-card on an <a href> would.


FOR PARSERS ONLY:

The nested 'h-card' could be marked up as an 'h-org' as well, which adds it to the nested microformat's type array, all as part of the property specified by the 'p-org'.

<div class="h-card">
  <a class="p-name u-url"
     href="http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/" 
    >Mitchell Baker</a> 
  (<a class="p-org h-card h-org" 
      href="http://mozilla.org/"
     >Mozilla Foundation</a>)
</div>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Mitchell Baker"],
      "url": ["http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/"],
      "org": [{
        "value": "Mozilla Foundation",
        "type": ["h-card", "h-org"],
        "properties": {
          "name": ["Mozilla Foundation"],
          "url": ["http://mozilla.org/"]
        }
      }]
    }
  }]
}


FOR PARSERS ONLY:

Without a property class name like 'p-org' holding all the nested objects together, we need to introduce another array for nested children (similar to the existing DOM element notion of children) of a microformat that are not attached to a specific property:

<div class="h-card">
  <a class="p-name u-url"
     href="http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/" 
    >Mitchell Baker</a> 
  (<a class="h-org h-card" 
      href="http://mozilla.org/"
     >Mozilla Foundation</a>)
</div>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Mitchell Baker"],
      "url": ["http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/"]
    },
    "children": [{
      "type": ["h-card","h-org"],
      "properties": {
        "name": ["Mozilla Foundation"],
        "url": ["http://mozilla.org/"]
      }  
    }]
  }]
}

Since there's no property class name on the element with classes 'h-card' and 'h-org', the microformat representing that element is collected into the children array.

Such a nested microformat implies some relationship (containment, being related), but is not as useful as if the nested microformat was a specific property of its parent.

For this reason it's recommended that authors should not publish nested microformats without a property class name, and instead, when nesting microformats, authors should always specify a property class name (like 'p-org') on the same element as the root class name(s) of the nested microformat(s) (like 'h-card' and/or 'h-org').

FOR PARSERS ONLY:

Or the nested object could be only marked up with 'h-card'. Source:

<div class="h-card">
  <a class="p-name u-url"
     href="http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/" 
    >Mitchell Baker</a> 
  (<a class="h-card" 
      href="http://mozilla.org/"
     >Mozilla Foundation</a>)
</div>

Parsed JSON:

{
  "items": [{ 
    "type": ["h-card"],
    "properties": {
      "name": ["Mitchell Baker"],
      "url": ["http://blog.lizardwrangler.com/"]
    },
    "children": [{
      "type": ["h-card"],
      "properties": {
        "name": ["Mozilla Foundation"],
        "url": ["http://mozilla.org/"]
      }  
    }]
  }]
}

TO DO: Add h-event h-card example and JSON, per real world publishing examples like Swing Time: Classes in Southern England.

authoring

minimal markup

The best way to use microformats-2 is with as little additional markup as possible. This keeps your code cleaner, improves its maintainability, and thus the quality and longevity of your microformats.

One big advantage of microformats-2 over previous microformats (and others) is the ability to add one class name to an existing element to create a structured item.

See the simple examples at the top for a start, e.g.

Simple hCards work just by adding class="h-card" :

<span class="h-card">Frances Berriman</span>

<a class="h-card" href="http://benward.me">Ben Ward</a>

<img class="h-card" alt="Sally Ride" 
     src="http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a4/Ride-s.jpg"/>

<a class="h-card" href="http://tantek.com">
 <img alt="Tantek Çelik" src="http://ttk.me/logo.jpg"/>
</a>
  • Tip: Inside an open tag, put the class attribute first, then any human text content attributes (e.g. alt), then URL attributes (e.g. href src), and lastly other attributes (e.g. style). Putting the class attribute first ties it closely to the element name/tag itself, makes it more obvious, and thus more likely to be kept up to date.

backward compatible

If you depend on current microformats Microformats Implementations, while they're being updated to support microformats2, you can include both existing microformats and microformats-2 markup.

In short: use both sets of class names simultaneously.

When doing so, use them on the same element, with the microformats-2 class name first, followed immediately by the existing microformats class name.

Here are the microformats-2 hCards from above with current hCard 1.0 markup as well, which may require adding a wrapping element (e.g. a <span>) to separate the root class name element from explicit property class name elements:

<span class="h-card vcard">
  <span class="p-name fn">Frances Berriman</span>
</span>

<span class="h-card vcard">
  <a class="p-name fn u-url url" href="http://benward.me">Ben Ward</a>
</span>

<span class="h-card vcard">
  <img class="p-name fn u-photo photo" alt="Sally Ride" 
       src="http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a4/Ride-s.jpg"/>
</span>

<span class="h-card vcard">
  <a class="u-url url" href="http://tantek.com">
    <img class="p-name fn u-photo photo" alt="Tantek Çelik" 
         src="http://ttk.me/logo.jpg"/>
  </a>
</span>


Tips:

  • use the microformats-2 class name first, e.g.
    • class="h-card vcard"
    • class="u-url url"
  • and pair them when using an element for multiple properties, e.g.:
    • class="p-name fn u-url url"
    • class="p-name fn u-photo photo"
  • put microformats classes after classes for CSS (since page authors will likely interact more with their own classes for design than with microformats classes), e.g. as used on individual microformats Microformats events pages:
    • class="event-page h-event vevent"

The prefixes (h-, p-, etc.) of microformats2 class names provide easier recognition, and when followed by the similarly named existing class name, they're more easily recognized as related and thus kept together when the markup is maintained over time.

Related FAQ: When using both h-card and vcard which should be first and why?

validators

microformats2 validators:

new! Test your microformatted web page with:

Barnaby Walters has a hosted version of the open source php-mf2 Microformats Parsers where you can enter your markup into a textarea and see how it's parsed:

See the microformats validators page for a longer list of validators.

Examples in the wild

Please add new examples in the wild of microformats-2 to the top of this list. When it gets too big we can move it to a separate page like microformats-2-examples-in-wild.

  • ...
  • David John Mead marks up his profile, blog posts and comments with h-card, h-entry and h-cite on davidjohnmead.com
  • Brian Suda marks up his blog posts up with h-entry and h-card on optional.is
  • Ashton McAllan marks up her blog posts, reposts, comments and likes with h-entry, h-card and h-cite on acegiak.net
  • Emma Kuo marks up her blog posts and notes with h-entry and h-card on notenoughneon.com
  • Scott Jenson marks up his blog posts with h-entry and h-card on jenson.org
  • Emily McAllen marks up her blog posts with h-entry and h-card on blackwoolholiday.com
  • Ryan Barrett marks up his blog posts, notes, replies and likes with h-entry and h-card on snarfed.org
  • Barry Frost marks up his notes with h-entry, h-card and h-cite on barryfrost.com
  • Amber Case marks up her profile, blog posts, replies and notes with h-entry and h-card on caseorganic.com
  • Johannes Ernst marks up his blog posts with h-entry on upon2020.com
  • Michiel de Jong marks up his profile and notes with h-entry and h-card on michielbdejong.com
  • Mike Taylor marks up his profile and blog posts with h-card and h-entry on bear.im
  • Erin Jo Ritchey marks up her profile, posts and comments using h-card, h-entry and h-cite with idno on erinjo.is
  • Jeena Paradies marks up his profile, blog posts, notes and comments using h-card, h-entry and h-cite on jeena.net
  • Andy Sylvester marks up his profile, blog posts and comments using h-card and h-entry on andysylvester.com (note: as of 2014-03-13 using h-entry for comments instead of correct h-cite --bw 14:44, 13 March 2014 (UTC))
  • Hakan Demir marks up his Coupon and Voucher blog posts with h-entry and h-card on gutscheinflagge.de
  • Chloe Weil marks up her blog posts with h-entry on chloeweil.com
  • Christophe Ducamp marks up his blog posts and profile with h-entry and h-card on christopheducamp.com
  • Glenn Jones marks up his blog posts, notes, replies, profile and comments with h-entry, h-card and h-cite on glennjones.net
  • Marcus Povey marks up his blog posts and profile with h-entry and h-card on marcus-povey.co.uk
  • Eugen Busoiu marks up his web profile with h-card on eugenbusoiu.com]
  • Matthias Pfefferle marks up his blog posts, comments and profile with h-card, h-cite and h-entry on notizblog.org
  • Kyle Mahan marks up his profile and notes with h-card and h-entry on kylewm.com
  • Okinawan-lyrics marks up his blog posts with h-entry and h-card (example)
  • Emil Björklund marks up his blog posts with h-entry and h-card (example)
  • App.net rolled out support for h-card and h-entry on all profile pages and permalink pages as of 2013-08-06 (example)
  • Brett Comnes marks up his posts with h-entry and h-card (example)
  • Ben Werdmuller marks up his posts with h-card and h-entry, u-in-reply-to and u-like (example)
  • Sandeep Shetty marks his posts up with h-card and h-entry, as well as draft u-in-reply-to and experimental u-like properties (example)
  • Laurent Eschenauer marks up his posts with h-entry (example)
  • Tom Morris marks up his posts using h-entry (example)
  • Sinolandquality marks up some of their content using h-feed and h-entry on sinolandquality.com
  • W3Conf 2013 uses h-event for the main event, and h-card for all the speakers and notable attendees. The h-cards make particularly good use of implied name, url, and photo properties.
  • SemPress is a WordPress theme that supports h-card, h-feed/h-entry and h-as-*
  • The Pastry Box Project use h-card and h-entry markup on their homepage and individual thoughts pages
  • Tom Morris uses h-card and XFN - The XHTML Friends Network to markup his blogroll.
  • Aaron Parecki uses h-card to markup both authorship and references to people in his notes permalinks, e.g. 2012/230/reply/1.
  • Tantek Çelik uses h-card, h-event, and h-entry on his home page, as well as h-entry on all post permalinks, e.g. 2012-243 post, with rel-prev/rel-next (if applicable) to indicate prev/next posts, and with rel author to his home page with canonical hCard to indicate authorship.
  • Barnaby Walters uses h-card on his home page, h-card, h-entry and XFN markup on his notes page.
    • 2013-01-25 Barnaby Walters: Experimental Markup - describes how he's using microformats2 vocabularies: h-adr, h-card, h-entry, h-event, h-geo, h-review, and experimental vocabularies: h-feed (embedded for update histories), activity streams objects h-as-article, h-as-collection, h-as-note, h-as-update, as well as experimental properties: u-alternate and u-as-downstream-duplicate (links to POSSE copies), and u-in-reply-to (links to content that the posts are in reply to).
  • microformats.org at 7 years presentation with h-event and h-card markup for people and organizations.
  • Rise of the Indie Web hCards (from Personal Democracy Forum 2012 #pdf12 #pdf2012) has microformats2 h-calendar and h-card markup
  • WebMaker by Mozilla has microformats2 h-calendar and h-card on event search (e.g. search near Portland Oregon) and event pages (e.g. IndieWebCamp 2012).[1]
  • WebFWD by Mozilla has microformats2 h-card markup on experts and team pages
  • IndieWebCamp has microformats2 h-event markup with nested h-cards for the organizers and the location.
  • Mozilla Events page has microformats2 h-event markup with attendees marked up with h-card.
  • The Esri PDX Blog has h-entry markup on all blog posts (as of 2013-10-19), and h-product markup on project pages

offline

  • spreadly marks up share permalink pages with h-entry, as well as minimal h-cards and experimental p-like properties

Implementations

new! Test your microformatted web page with:

Live Textarea Input

Use any of these to enter HTML+microformats2 markup and see the parsed result!

Blogging tools

Converters

  • XRay (source code) - Returns a normalized representation of the microformats data at a URL

Parsers

Parsers, open source libraries, in alphabetical order by programming language:

Parsers in production

The following parsers are of very high quality, in active development, and use on live sites on the web in production.

Java
  • any23 Apache Any23 (Anything to Triples)] a library, a web service and a command line tool that extracts structured data in RDF format from a variety of Web documents: http://any23.apache.org
Javascript
PHP
Python
Ruby

Development parsers

The following parsers are in-development and have key microformats2 functionality yet are incomplete, not fully tested, or have other limitations. Contributions welcome!

Erlang
Elixir
Go
Haskell
Java

Experiments

Experiments and other proof of concept microformat2 parsing support.

  • ...

Outreach

Presentations

Presentations about microformats2:

Testimonials

About This Brainstorm

The rest of this page is a brainstorm currently written in narrative / exploratory format, that is, acknowledging the success that microformats have had, why so, and then a walk through of known issues with microformats in general along with iteration of ways to address said issues, ending up with the current microformats 2 design as a conclusion.

The proposals build on each other resulting in a solution that addresses the vast majority of general issues. The proposed changes merit a major version number increment, hence microformats 2.

This mathematical proof/derivation style is used to explicitly encourage understanding (and double-checking) of the rational steps taken in the development of microformats 2. Reasons are documented, sometimes along with alternatives considered (and reasons for rejection of those alternatives).

When the microformats 2 brainstorm has evolved sufficiently to demonstrate some degree of stability, usability, and implementability, it will be rewritten in a more declarative specification style, and this narrative/derivation will be archived to a background development page for historical purposes.

Tantek

Background

2004: In early February microformats were introduced as a concept at eTech, and in September hCard 1.0 and hCalendar 1.0 were proposed at FOO Camp.

2010:

  • XFN -> Social Graph API -> Web as Social Network / Address Book

Addressing Issues

AUTHORS and PUBLISHING

Authors and publishers are perhaps the most important constituency in the microformats community. There are more of them than there are developers, programmers, parsers, etc. and they're the ones that solved the chicken-egg problem by publishing microformats even before tools were available for consuming them.

Therefore we must first address author/publisher general issues with microformats.

can we make the simplest case simpler

Issue: How can we make it easier for authors to publish microformats?

Currently the simplest hCard:

<span class="vcard">
  <span class="fn">
    Chris Messina
  </span>
</span>

requires 2 elements (nested, with perhaps at least one being pre-existing), and 2 class names.

Web authors/designers are used to the simplicity of most HTML tags, e.g. to mark up a heading:

<h1>Chris Messina</h1>

requires just 1 element.

Jeffrey Zeldman pointed out this apparent perceived incremental complexity (2 elements vs 1) during a microformats workshop in 2009 in New York City.

How can we make microformats just as easy?

Proposal: allow root class name only.

This would enable:

<h1 class="vcard">Chris Messina</h1>

requiring only 1 class name for the simplest case.


renaming for usability

Otherwise known as, choosing one form of consistency over another.

Can we do even better?

One of the most common questions asked about hCard is:

Why does hCard use vcard as the root class name?

This slight inconsistency between the name of the format and the name of the root class name consistently causes confusion in a large percentage of newcomers to microformats.

Though in microformats we believe very strongly in the principles of Reuse, we have to admit that in this case experience/evidence has shown that this may be a case where we re-used something too far beyond it's original meaning. Thus:

Proposal: use root class name "hcard" instead of "vcard" for future hCards.

This would result in:

<h1 class="hcard">Chris Messina</h1>

making the simple case even simpler:

Just 1 additional class name, named the same as the format you're adding. Think hCard, markup class="hcard".

At a minimum for compatibility we should document that parsers should accept "hcard" as an alternative to "vcard" as the root class name for hCard 1.0, and similarly for hCalendar 1.0: "hcalendar" in addition to "vcalendar", "hevent" in addition to "vevent".

However, for microformats2 we are going to distinguish root class names further by using an "h-" prefix (e.g. "h-card"). Read on to understand why.

simplifying to only needing one element

It's very important for the simple case to be as simple as possible, to enable the maximum number of people to get started with minimum effort. (The idea of using a single class name for a microformat was proposed by Ryan Cannon in 2006 specifically for hCard, and rediscovered by Tantek in 2010 and subsequently generalized to all microformats.)

From there on, it's ok to require incremental effort for incremental return.

E.g. to add any additional information about a person, add explicit property names.

How does this simple root-only case work?

  • root class name reflects name of the microformat
  • every microformat must require at most 1 property (preferably 0)
    • admit that requiring a field in an application just results in noise (the 90210 problem - apps which require zip code get lots of false 90210 entries), and specify that any application use cases which appear to "require" specific properties must instead define how to imply sensible defaults for them.
  • when only a root class name is specified, imply the entire text contents of the element as the value of the primary property of the microformat. e.g.
    • "hcard" implies "fn"
    • hcalendar event - "hevent" - implies "summary"
    • "hreview" implies "summary"
    • "hentry" implies "entry-summary" (perhaps collapse into "summary" - in practice they're not sufficiently semantically distinct to require separate property names)
    • OR instead of making the one implied property be vocabulary specific, introduce a new generic (applicable to all vocabularies) 'p-name' property (subsuming hCard's 'fn'). See microformats 2 brainstorming: further simplifications for latest thoughts along these lines, including the following specific mark-up implied generic properties across all microformats (based on existing published markup use-cases)
      • 'p-name'
      • 'u-url'
      • 'u-photo'

flat sets of properties

What more can we simplify about microformats?

Numerous individuals have provided the feedback that whenever there is more than one level of hierarchy in a microformat, many (most?) developers get confused - in particular Kavi Goel of Google / Rich Snippets provided this feedback at a microformats dinner. Thus depending on multiple levels of hierarchy is likely resulting in a loss of authorability, perhaps even accuracy as confusion undoubtedly leads to more errors. Thus:

Proposal: simplify all microformats to flat sets of properties.

What this means:

  • all microformats are simply an object with a set of properties with values.
  • no more subproperties- drop the notion of subproperties.
  • use composition of multiple microformats for any further hierarchy, e.g. the "location" of an hCalendar event can be an hCard, or the "agent" of one hCard can be another hCard.

For example for hCard this would mean the following specific changes to keep relevant functionality:

  • drop "n", promote all "n" subproperties to full properties
    • given-name, family-name, additional-name, honorific-prefix, honorific-suffix
  • treat "geo" as a nested microformat
  • treat "adr" as a nested microformat (what to do about adr's "type"?)
  • treat "org" as a flat string and drop "organization-name" and "organization-unit" (in practice rarely used, also not revealed or ignored in contact management user interfaces - e.g. Address Book)

Example: add a middle initial to the previous example Chris Messina's name, and markup each name component:

<h1 class="hcard">
 <span class="fn">
  <span class="given-name">Chris</span>
  <abbr class="additional-name">R.</abbr>
  <span class="family-name">Messina</span>
 </span>
</h1>

Note:

  1. use of an explicit span with "fn" to markup his entire formatted name
  2. use of the abbr element to explicitly indicate the semantic that "R." is merely an abbreviation for his additional-name.

distinguishing properties from other classes

Current microformats properties re-use generic terms like "summary", "photo", "updated" both for ease of use and understanding.

However, through longer term experience, we've seen sites that accidentally drop (or break) their microformats support (e.g. Upcoming.org, Facebook) because web authors sometimes rewrite all their class names, and either are unaware that microformats were in the page, or couldn't easily distinguish microformats property class names from other site-specific class names.

This issue has been reported by a number of web authors.

Thus microformats 2 uses prefixes for property class names, e.g.:

  • p-summary instead of summary
  • u-photo instead of photo
  • dt-updated instead of updated

Such prefixing of all microformats class names was first suggested by Scott Isaacs of Microsoft to Tantek on a visit to Microsoft sometime in 2006/2007, but specifically aimed at making microformats easier to parse. At the time the suggestion was rejected since microformats were focused on web authors rather than parsers.

However, since experience has shown that distinguishing property class names is an issue for both web authors and parser developers, this is a key change that microformats 2 is adopting. See the next section for details.

COMMUNITY and TOOLS

The second most important constituency in the microformats community are the developers, programmers, tool-makers.

A non-trivial number of them have been sufficiently frustrated with some general issues with microformats that they've done the significant extra work to support very different and less friendly alternatives (microdata, RDFa). Based on this real-world data (market behavior), it behooves us to address these general issues with microformats for this constituency.

existing microformats parsing requirements

COMMUNITY and TOOLS (that) USE MICROFORMATS

  • parser / parsing
  • structured
  • getting the data out
  • json - 1:1 mapping

Parsing microformats currently requires

  1. a list of root class names of each microformat to be parsed
  2. a list of properties for each specific microformats, along with knowledge of the type of each property in order to parse their data from potentially different portions of the HTML markup
  3. some number of format-specific specific rules (markup/content optimizations)

This has meant that whenever a new microformat is drafted/specificied/adopted, parsers need to updated to handle it correctly, at a minimum to parse them when inside other microformats and avoid errantly implying properties from one to the other (containment, mfo-examples problem).

naming conventions for generic parsing

I think there is a fairly simple solution to #1 and #2 from the above list, and we can make progress towards minimizing #3. In short:

Proposal: a set of naming conventions for microformat root class names and properties that make it obvious when:

  • a class name represents a microformat root class name
  • a class name represents a microformat property name
  • a class name represents a microformat property that needs special parsing (specific type of property).

In particular - derived from the real world examples of existing proven microformats (rather than any abstraction of what a schema should have)

  • "h-*" for root class names, e.g. "h-card", "h-event", "h-entry"
    • The 'h-' prefix is based on the existing microformats naming pattern of starting with 'h'.
  • "p-*" for simple (text) properties, e.g. "p-fn", "p-summary"
    • vocabulary generic parsing, element text in general, treat certain HTML element/attribute combination as special and use those first, e.g. img/alt, abbr/title.
    • The 'p-' prefix is based on the word "property" starting with 'p'.
  • "u-*" for URL properties, e.g. "u-url", "u-photo", "u-logo"
    • special parsing required: prefer a/href, img/src, object/data etc. attributes to element contents.
    • The 'u-' prefix is based on URL/URI starting with the letter 'u', which is the type of most of these related properties.
  • "dt-*" for datetime properties, e.g. "dt-start", "dt-end", "dt-bday"
    • special parsing required: Value Class Pattern, in particular separate date time value parsing for better human readabillity / DRY balance.
    • The 'dt-' prefix is based on "date time" having the initials "dt" and the preponderance of existing date time properties starting with "dt", e.g. dtstart, dtend, dtstamp, dtreviewed.
  • "e-*" for element tree properties where the entire contained element hierarchy is the value, e.g. "e-content" (formerly "entry-content") for hAtom 0.1. The 'e-' prefix can also be mnemonically remembered as "element tree", "embedded markup", or "encapsulated markup".

This provides a simpler transition/education story for existing microformats authors/publishers:

  • "h*" to "h-*", "dt*" to "dt-*", url-like properties to "u-*", entire embedded markup to "e-*", and "p-*" for all "plain text" properties.

See microformats2 prefix conventions for further thoughts and discussions on these and other class prefixes.

Example: taking that simple heading hCard example forward:

<h1 class="h-card">Chris Messina</h1>

As part of microformats 2 we would immediately define root class names and property names for all existing microformats and drafts consistent with this naming convention, and require support thereof from all new implementations, as well as strongly encouraging existing implementations to adopt the simplified microformats 2 syntax and mechanism. Question: which microformats deserve explicit backward compatibility?

As a community we would continue to use the microformats The microformats process both for researching and determining the need for new microformats, and for naming new microformat property names for maximum re-use and interoperability of a shared vocabulary.

If it turns out we need a new property type in the future, we can use one of the remaining single-letter-prefixes to add it to microformats 2. This would require updating of parsers of course, but in practice the number of different types of properties has grown very slowly, and we know from other schema/programming languages that there's always some small limited number of scalar/atomic property types that you need, and using those you can create compound types/objects that represent richer / more complicated types of data. See microformats2 prefix conventions for documentation of existing single-letter class name prefixes in practice.

ADVANTAGES

This has numerous advantages:

  • better maintainability - much more obvious to web authors/designers/publishers which class names are for/from microformats.
  • no chance of collision - for all practical purposes with existing class names and thus avoiding any need to add more complex CSS style rules to prevent unintended styling effects.
  • simpler parsing - parsers can now do a simple stream-parse (or in-order DOM tree walk) and parse out all microformat objects, properties, and values, without having to know anything about any specific microformats.
  • separation of syntax and vocabulary - by abstracting microformats 2 syntax independent of any vocabulary, it allows and encourages development of shared vocabularies that can work in alternative syntaxes.

More examples: here is that same heading example with name components:

<h1 class="h-card">
 <span class="p-fn">
  <span class="p-given-name">Chris</span>
  <abbr class="p-additional-name">R.</abbr>
  <span class="p-family-name">Messina</span>
 </span>
</h1>

with a hyperlink to Chris's URL:

<h1 class="h-card">
 <a class="p-fn u-url" href="http://factoryjoe.com/">
  <span class="p-given-name">Chris</span>
  <abbr class="p-additional-name">R.</abbr>
  <span class="p-family-name">Messina</span>
 </a>
</h1>

COMPATIBILITY

microformats 2 is backwards compatible in that in permits content authors to markup with both old and new class names for compatibility with old tools.

Here is a simple example:

<h1 class="h-card vcard">
 <span class="fn">Chris Messina</span>
</h1>

a microformats 2 parser would see the class name "h-card" and imply the one required property from the contents, while a microformats 1.0 parser would find the class name "vcard" and then look for the class name "fn". no data duplication is required. this is a very important continuing application of the DRY principles.

And the above hyperlinked example with both sets of class names:

<h1 class="h-card vcard">
 <a class="p-fn u-url n fn url" href="http://factoryjoe.com/">
  <span class="p-given-name given-name">Chris</span>
  <abbr class="p-additional-name additional-name">R.</abbr>
  <span class="p-family-name family-name">Messina</span>
 </a>
</h1>


VENDOR EXTENSIONS

(this section was only discussed verbally and not written up during discussions - capturing here as it is topical)

Proprietary extensions to formats have typically been shortlived experimental failures with one big recent exception.

Proprietary or experimental CSS3 property implementations have been very successful.

There has been much use of border radius properties and animations/transitions which use CSS properties with vendor-specific prefixes like:

  • -moz-border-radius
  • -webkit-border-radius

etc.

Note that these are merely string prefixes, not bound to any URL, and thus not namespaces in any practical sense of the word. This is quite an important distinction, as avoiding the need to bind to a URL has made them easier to support and use.

This use of vendor specific CSS properties has in recent years allowed the larger web design/development/implementor communities to experiment and iterate on new CSS features while the features were being developed and standardized.

The benefits have been two-fold:

  • designers have been able to make more attractive sites sooner (at least in some browsers)
  • features have been market / real-world tested before being fully standardized, thus resulting in better features

Implementers have used/introduced "x-" prefixes for IETF MIME/content-types for experimental content-types, MIME parameter extensions, and HTTP header extensions, per RFC 2045 Section 6.3, RFC 3798 section 3.3, and Wikipedia: HTTP header fields - non-standard headers (could use RFC reference instead) respectively, like:

Some standard types started as experimental "x-" types, thus demonstrating this experiment first, standardize later approach has worked for at least some cases:

  • image/x-png (standardized as image/png, both per RFC2083)

There have been times when specific sites have wanted to extend microformats beyond what the set of properties in the microformat, and currently lack any experimental way to do so - to try and see if a feature (or even a whole format) is interesting in the real world before bothering to pursue researching and walking it through the microformats process. Thus:

Proposal:

  • '*-x-' + '-' + meaningful name for root and property class names
    • where "*" indicates the single-character-prefix as defined above
    • where "x" indicates a literal 'x' for an experimental extension OR
    • OR "x" indicates a vendor prefix (more than one character, e.g. like CSS vendor extension abbreviations, or some stock symbols, avoiding first words/phrases/abbreviations of microformats properties like dt-)
    • e.g.
    • "h-bigco-one-ring" - a hypothetical "bigco" vendor-specific "one-ring" microformat root class name.
    • "p-goog-preptime" - to represent Google's "preptime" property extension to hRecipe 0.22 (aside: "duration" may be another property type to consider separate from "datetime" as it may be subject to different parsing rules.)
    • "p-x-prep-time" - a possible experimental property name to be added to hRecipe upon consideration/documentation of real-world usage/uptake.

Background - this proposal is a composition of the following (at least somewhat) successful vendor extension syntaxes

USERS

Need more tools and interfaces that:

  • publish
  • copy/paste
  • right-click on a microformat
  • share
  • search results

discussed some existing like: H2VX converts hCard to vCard, hCalendar to iCalendar

how would we re-implement Live Clipboard today, making it easier for publishers and developers?

SEE ALSO