[uf-dev] Displaying hidden microformat in Operator (and elsewhere)

Pelle W mejllistor at kodfabrik.se
Wed Nov 7 08:16:55 PST 2007

Mike Kaply skrev:
> I've discovered what I consider a flaw in Operator in that I display
> all microformats even if they aren't visible on the screen at the same
> time. This can make pages like this one unwieldy.
> Originally I considered updating Operator to fix this, but on further
> investigation, I would like to make the core Microformats code I am
> putting into Firefox ignore hidden microformats.
> I'd like to know what people think about this.
I have no knowledge in what should be done according to standards so 
this might sound insane but my personal opinion is that the microformats 
should be processed if they are present in the document and hidden with 
CSS because there may be perfectly legal reasons for hiding them and if 
such data isn't included it could perhaps present designers with a tough 
choice between design and semantics.

For example - I may want to replace an microformat with an image showing 
that very same data but with pixels instead of text. Should I then not 
have the possibility of having semantic data being processed by Firefox 
because I don't want to duplicate the info already present in the image?

The only time it would be a problem for Firefox to process hidden data 
would be when a JavaScript-enabled page stores an excessive amount of 
data within the DOM-tree and it should be that page's resonsibility to 
have the DOM-tree only containing the data present at the moment. It is 
certainly possible to remove it from the DOM-tree and add it first when 
it's actually used on the site.

Content and presentation should be separated when designing a website - 
right? The html-document only containing the data of that page and the 
css containing how it should be presented? Microformats is tied to the 
former - the data - and not to the presentation in my opinion. The only 
concern when it comes to microformats should be about the data contained 
within the document and it is the content's creator's responsibility to 
have the document only containing that very page's own data and if that 
is done responsible then it wouldn't be a problem for tools to only 
consider the availability of the microformat and not it's presentation.

I would say that such a flaw is a flaw in the page rather than in Operator.

/ Pelle

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