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Re: The harm that can come if the W3C supports publication of competing specs

From: Philip Jägenstedt <philipj@opera.com>
Date: Sat, 16 Jan 2010 18:08:19 +0100
To: "Shelley Powers" <shelley.just@gmail.com>, "HTMLWG WG" <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <op.u6mxv5l9sr6mfa@worf>
On Sat, 16 Jan 2010 17:06:18 +0100, Shelley Powers  
<shelley.just@gmail.com> wrote:

> I do not work for an implementor, which seems to imbue one with super
> human markup skills, so you'll have to excuse me if what I perceive
> support for competing standards by the same standards organization
> seems to me to be, well, forgive my frankness, the dumbest thing the
> W3C has done since blink.

The only reasonable alternative is to publish no standard at all.

> What really irritates me, and I'm going to toy around the edges with
> this thought in order to be "politically expedient", is that Microdata
> was nothing more than a counter to RDFa. It was proposed by a person
> who doesn't believe in metadata; it's supported by people who don't
> believe in metadata, and as far as I can see, the only thing these
> folks believe in, is they don't like RDFa.

Please stop this nonsense of trying to assign intents and views to the  
supporters of microdata, we are perfectly capable of expressing and  
defending those ourselves. I personally happen to have an unhealthy  
attachment to certain types of metadata and have spent ridiculous amounts  
of my private time adding and editing data at e.g. MusicBrainz. However,  
whether or not I "believe in metadata" is completely irrelevant, as are  
the private views of the editor, RDFa supporters, yourself or anyone else.

> All of this combined will have the end result of convincing people to
> do _nothing_ about metadata, rather than have to deal with our
> squabbles; a result which, frankly, probably also suits the Microdata
> folks, since at least RDFa won't be used. Microdata has, in effect,
> become a poison pill for metadata.

Please come back when you have an example of this actually happening. If  
it does happen that would be unfortunate, but some initial turbulence when  
there are competing technologies can hardly be avoided. What you are  
asking for is that we support exactly one standard, which it is abundantly  
clear is not going to happen.

> We saw nothing
> more than a couple of trial implementations when Microdata was in
> HTML5, a couple of blog posts--tepid enthusiasm, because Microdata
> proponents don't really believe in metadata.

It's hardly reasonable to expect deployment to happen in the short time  
microdata had in HTML5. For obvious reasons browser vendors cannot make  
promises of implementation, but unless something dramatic changes it seems  
likely that microdata will get implemented. Authors will adopt it when it  
gives them tangible benefits, such as integration with native calendar  
applications and to a lesser extent the DOM API itself.

Philip Jägenstedt
Received on Saturday, 16 January 2010 17:08:39 UTC

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