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Re: ISSUE-27: rel-ownership Change Proposal discussion

From: Tantek Çelik <tantek@cs.stanford.edu>
Date: Wed, 20 Jan 2010 20:17:50 -0800
Message-ID: <60cb038a1001202017r19dd474dqa95b4dd71b8612b5@mail.gmail.com>
To: Mark Nottingham <mnot@mnot.net>
Cc: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, public-html-request@w3.org, Paul Cotton <Paul.Cotton@microsoft.com>, "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>
On Wed, Jan 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, Mark Nottingham <mnot@mnot.net> wrote:
> Tantek -
> On 21/01/2010, at 2:10 PM, Tantek Celik wrote:
>> While I admire a lot of the good work that has gone into "Web Linking", I must point out that in the decade+ since HTML4 (or 4.01), wiki-based methods of researching, exploring, brainstorming, proposing, testing, implementing, and iterating on rel values has actually served the web design and development communities reasonably well, with a good variety of rel values being published and interoperably implemented, whereas in that same decade+ time period, IETF/W3C-based processes have been largely absent or stagnant in terms of rel value development (with a few notable exceptions like Atom).
>> Thus I do think in general we have a decade+ of experience that for this particular space of standards/extensions, community wiki-based methods have been superior (in direct contradiction of the assertion that "may not be a workable solution in the long run" - 10+ years is not a bad "long run" frankly), and I would hate to lose that moving forward.
> Not to quibble, but you quote ten years,

Yes, 10+ years that rel has been an extensible by *anyone* attribute
in HTML4.x per the spec - that's merely a statement of historical

> whereas WHOIS says microformats.org was registered in 2005 -- the same year that Atom's link relation registry, which Web Linking is based upon, was created. When did you actually start using a wiki? Was there one somewhere else?

A bit more of the history of adoption of various rel values and their
development on the web (in contrast to email lists).

There was very little widespread use of the rel attribute among web
designers for anything other than rel="stylesheet" (and sometimes
rel="alternate" for feeds) for many years after HTML4.x became REC.

2002: I first proposed (in a blog post on the web) that blogs should
use rel="bookmark" (from HTML4) to more semantically markup existing
blog post permalinks.
http://tantek.com/log/2002/11.html#L20021128t1352 - soon thereafter it
became widespread practice.

2003: March, at SXSW I proposed marking up existing blogroll links to
friends (existing widespread practice on the web) with rel="friend" to
express that semantic. By December, Eric Meyer, Matt Mullenweg, and I
proposed XFN 1.0 on a *website* (not an email list), and the XMDP
profile format for formally defining them, which quickly became the
dominant use of profile attribute. Again, the result was rapid
widespread adoption/practice on blogs and personal sites. The
announcement http://tantek.com/log/2003/12.html#L20031215 discussion
and iteration continued collaboratively on blogs across the web, not
email lists.  Perhaps not wiki-based development per se, but certainly
*web-based* development.

2004: I invented and proposed rel="license" for more semantically
expressing links to Creative Commons (and other) licenses.  Initially
in a presentation at ETech (posted on my site)
, and on the ETech *wiki*
http://wiki.oreillynet.com/etech/index.cgi?RealWorldSemantics and then
more formally documented on the (unfortunately now defunct) Technorati
Developer's wiki:
Again, *web-based* (and mostly/eventually *wiki-based*)
discussion/iteration, not email-list-based.

2005: January, rel-tag proposed/developed on the Technorati
Developer's wiki
. In June, all rel values and other microformats developed on the
Technorati Developer's wiki were contributed to microformats.org,
where they have been developed since, primarily on a wiki.

>From then on, numerous other rel-values have been
researched/brainstormed/proposed/tested/experimented/iterated on the
microformats.org wiki.

A few more historical details/links: http://microformats.org/wiki/history

Most comprehensive documentation of rel values on the web:

>> I'm not saying that wiki-based methods have been perfect by any means, nor am I saying that they couldn't be improved. However, they've been the best we have seen *in practice*, and that's worth a lot IMHO.
>> However, as I said, a lot of the good work has gone into "Web Linking", and would like to see the improvements/changes proposed there pursued  within the communities that have been carrying rel forward in the past 10+ years (primarily microformats.org), so that they can be evaluated/critiqued/iterated by those who have been working on them to date, and incorporated into the specs there as well.
> According to my mailbox, you've been aware of the draft for more than a year (at the least; it's been around since 2006). Do you have additional feedback?

I've given up on keeping up with innumerable different mailing lists
for innumerable different standards. Email doesn't scale. Wikis do.

My additional feedback is the same as above: please propose your
improvements/changes to rel values in the microformats community where
those rel values have been largely developed, discussed, and
documented, especially with respect to their use in *HTML* (in
contrast to Atom or other formats) - which is of course, what this
whole issue is about.


Received on Thursday, 21 January 2010 04:18:44 UTC

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