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Re: ISSUE-4: Versioning, namespace URIs and MIME types

From: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2009 09:19:36 -0500
Message-ID: <499D6A78.7070204@intertwingly.net>
To: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
CC: Anne van Kesteren <annevk@opera.com>, www-archive@w3.org
Henri Sivonen wrote:
> On Feb 19, 2009, at 15:45, Sam Ruby wrote:
> 
>> Henri Sivonen wrote:
>>> On Feb 19, 2009, at 13:56, Anne van Kesteren wrote:
>>>> On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 12:40:07 +0100, Sam Ruby 
>>>> <rubys@intertwingly.net> wrote:
>>>>> This problem is way worse with title, there the specs and consumers 
>>>>> (mostly) agree that it is plain text, yet the producers (mostly) 
>>>>> agree that it is entity encoded HTML.  That's why you might see 
>>>>> things like AT&amp;T in headlines.
>>>>>
>>>>> The only way forward in situations like this is to start over with 
>>>>> a new format.  People will never stop using RSS, but people who 
>>>>> have a need for the problems that Atom fixes will migrate.  And 
>>>>> consumers will support both.
>>>>
>>>> I think RSS5 could have worked actually given that consumers 
>>>> presumably have some interoperability or can get aligned because of 
>>>> the feeds already deployed. It was mostly for political reasons that 
>>>> such an approach was abandoned though presumably also because it's 
>>>> less hassle to simply start over and leave the mess to implementors. 
>>>> (See also design motivations for e.g. XForms.)
>>> FWIW, I agree. In retrospect, I think we should have done RSS5 
>>> despite the objections of the steward of RSS. Having Atom didn't help 
>>> feed consumer apps that still need to sort out the RSS <title> 
>>> disaster when RSS is served to them.
>>
>> /me mutters "Monday Morning Quarterbacks"[1].
> 
> My point is not criticizing what happened after the fact for the sake of 
> whining with hindsight. I was in it myself, and I even believed in 
> Draconian error handling back then and was terrified by Mark's Liberal 
> Parser.
> 
> My point is the Atom response to the flaws of RSS probably isn't a 
> pattern that is good for emulation by other groups in the future as "the 
> only way forward".

"Only way forward" out of context sounds bad.  I'll summarize the 
original context thus: "to fix things that can't be fixed without an 
incompatible change".

At the moment, the White House and the NFL both use Atom, even though 
they call it RSS.  Pretty much anything new written in Rails these days 
uses Atom.  You use Atom.  Anne does too.  Perhaps one day Ian will.

I'll make a note to check back in 5 years to see if, in hindsight, you 
see things differently.  :-P

- Sam Ruby
Received on Thursday, 19 February 2009 14:19:54 UTC

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