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Microformats Zen Garden

A CSS Zen Garden for microformats is essential for popular adoption. Getting something that "looks cool" for "free" should be a key attraction for convincing authors to "steal" microformatted data and cut'n'paste it into their own sites, and for that matter, to reuse style sheets for microformatted data as well.

Developers of microformat-savvy tools would also benefit from common idioms for presenting and editing microformatted data (for example, consider the impact of Apple's Address Book person-layout/edit view on many other Mac applications).

Unlike the original Zen Garden, Javascript may also prove essential to unlocking designers' flexibility: people have expressed interest in hooking hCards to maps, or this example of a renderer for hCalendar.

Interested parties

People who would be willing to spend time on the garden.

  • Robert Bachmann
    • could act as a point person
    • writing the sample document
    • providing styles (but he's not a good designer)
  • Scott Reynen
    • could make the backend submission and switcher functionality
  • Philip Ashlock (http://www.philaestheta.com)
    • Designer/Developer
    • I agree to help by developing interface design - clean attractive implementations
    • I have a server and domain names to contribute
    • I have live data to implement with a university website and a record label website
    • My university will essentially be paying me for development work
    • Suggestions for where efforts should be focused are most appreciated
  • Chris Messina
    • Designer
    • Drupal Theme developer
    • I've done a few implementations in experimental Drupal and WordPress themes... would like to do more.
  • Frances Berriman
    • New Media Developer (CSS/XHTML primarily, but also an accessibility auditor)
    • I offer to contribute time to ensuring development is accessible and adheres to WCAG.
    • I offer to help develop initial CSS templates to kick-start the showcase.
    • Will also be involved with any promotional or editorial aspects, if necessary.
  • Michael Owens (http://michaelkowens.com)
    • Designer/Developer (PHP/MySQL, CSS/XHTML, and JS/AJAX)
    • I agree to help by (co)developing the PHP implementation
    • I will contribute to the front end JS/AJAX development
    • I have developed numerous microformat-enhanced sites that may already have usable code snippets


Open questions

  • What license should be used? --Robert Bachmann 10:34, 21 Oct 2005 (PDT)
  • Should the example page contain examples for all microformats or should there be one example page per microformat? --Robert Bachmann 08:57, 24 Oct 2005 (PDT)
    • I think the example pages should mirror real world examples as much as practical. In some cases, microformats will be mixed, and in others they will occur independently, and it would be nice to have an environment in which to test microformat applications on such a diversity of example data. On the other hand, I can see some benefit in keeping it simple to encourage use. --Scott Reynen 12:44, 26 Oct 2005 (CST)
      • Unsure of status of this project (last edit 2005? Most interested though!) but think given recent development of hAtom and the constant growth and popularity of "blogs" as a whole, a blog page would be ideal. Perhaps a standard blog layout, containing author information (to utilise hCard and hCalendar) and many others as they are developed. It would also give the design plenty of space to write about what Microformats are all about, and show them in a really useful real world example that 99% of the viewers will find interesting (I hope). Frances Berriman 16 June 2006
        • After further discussion, iteration one of the project will use hCard, hReview and hCalendar as example blog posts with hAtom. Later versions will use hAtom with other popular microformats once they are stable and released. Frances Berriman
  • Discussion list: Use the microformats discussion list or use an extra list? (-Robert Bachmann)
    • I think a secondary list for this project would be beneficial. A digested version of current development work/status could be sent to the MF discussion lists periodically so that we can gain additional input from the MF group at large, without watering down the usual discussions that occur there. (-Frances Berriman)

Back end prototype

Coded by Scott Reynen

Project Revival

This wiki page hasn't been updated in a while and I'm wondering if people are still interested in working on this. The link is to something that I have been working on, open to change. I have not worked on the front end design (that's why it's so plain).

The setup is designed so that most users can get what they want as quickly and easily as possible. Users can explore XHTML code and stylesheets, of which the code can be used for their own sites. Users can "vote" for an entry (XHTML or CSS), one time per IP address (so that users don't have to register). A concept behind the architecture is that visitors shouldn't have to register unless they want a profile which lists their contributions.

Visitors (registered or not) can contribute XHTML segments or CSS stylesheets corresponding to a XHTML segment. By default, the submitted entries are accessible but are not in the main directory until "approved" by an administrator. Some design decisions are how the entries (XHTML and CSS) should be identified. Currently, all XHTML entries are "tagged" with items such as "hcard" or "hcalendar" (could be multiple). However, a naming scheme needs to be developed to use the directory listings (whether we use just a "name" or a "description" taxonomy).

It'd be great if we got something running, because I know that at least I would find such a resource useful. Feedback would be appreciated.

Paul Shen

  • +1 for revival Michael Owens
    • I also am very interested in reviving this project. I'd love to get some of us on IRC together to discuss sometime soon. (during Sept 2008)