[microformats-discuss] Presentational markup [was Re: Educationg[sic] Others

Kevin Marks kmarks at technorati.com
Mon Oct 3 23:04:39 PDT 2005

OK, I sense a bit of a straw man, but I think it stems from a  

On Oct 3, 2005, at 6:47 PM, Scott Anderson wrote:
> I dynamically build my XHTML documents from a mixture of content data
> and presentation data. The content markup typically gets wrapped by
> layers of presentation markup.

OK, lets stop here for a bit. What kind of presentation markup?
One goal of Microformats is to use structural markup, and defer 
presentation to CSS as far as practicable.
If you're generating nested tables with spacer gifs for spatial layout, 
I can see how you could end up with an aversion to HTML.

>  It could be that the only data I want
> to publish as a microformat is the author of a single deeply embedded
> component. How do I persist the context of the microformat instance
> that includes the author's name when the  presentation is now part of
> the context of that component? It is also typically the case that the
> presentation markup outweighs the sematic content market by 100 to 1.

You parse out the microformat data and reinsert that in your DB. Or you 
don't, you just generate a microformat so others can parse it. Just 
because the markup is reversible to your data doesn't mean you have to 
do it.

I assume your code has a common routine for every instance of an 
'author' record, so just adjust that to create an hCard instead of what 
you were using before. You can style them with CSS so they are all the 
same, or if you need style variants based on context,  apply suitable 
CSS containment rules.

> And the presentation is simply a snapshot that could change for
> whatever reason invalidating the persisted context that was presented
> to the user.
>>> What would be the advantages
>>> of doing this? If microformats are only useful in limited contexts
>>> then their usefullness to me evaporates very quickly.
>> Ah, so you prefer things that are useful everywhere? Like..?
> Microformats would be more useful to me if they each had a standard
> xml schema, if microformat instances required a unique id in the
> context of its document, if the microformat markup did not include
> presentation information, and finally if the microformat markup was
> integrated as an annotation (hidden div?) to an XHTML element instead
> of serving double duty as XHTML presentation elements.

They are structural elements. Can you show me these alleged 
presentation elements in any extant microformat?

As for generality, the discussion ongoing about XOXO and tabular forms 
are designed to act as more flexible cases.

In particular, XOXO will let you represent reversibly the kinds of 
nested list and dictionary structures common in scripting languages 
such as Python, PHP and Perl.

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