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RDF in RSS

Jeff thinks we should probably stop calling it syndication:

When more people start publishing content that doesn't fit the title/description/url format (recipes, movie reviews, photos, music playlists, etc.), "standard" formats will start to spring up (some have already) and the browsers will need to support them in some fashion. (This requires that the publishing tools support these new formats as well, which they eventually will. The whole ecosystem -- readers, publishing software, publishers, browsers -- will move along in fits and starts, just like it did with RSS.) -Jeff Kottke

It would move along a lot better if we could settle on RDF as the baseline model for metadata. Atom and Rss2.0 by themselves aren't flexible enough to support domain specific content like this - eventually they'll end with a value proposition like SOAP's and the interop discussion will have to move up one level to get the tools to be as useful as Jeff, Jon and Lucas want them to be.

Which reminds me, Danny and I have an Atom charter proposal to write up re RDF.


April 15, 2004 05:55 PM

Comments

Matt Garland
(April 15, 2004 07:12 PM #)

> eventually they'll end with a value proposition like SOAP's

There's an implication here that SOAP's value proposition falls short of what you'd like it to be. Can you elaborate on that?

Bill de hra
(April 16, 2004 09:21 AM #)

Matt,

I'm not implying that SOAP falls short. I'm saying that given the way RSS2.0 is and the way Atom is shaping up, they can't extend to cater for domain specific content (namespaces on their own don't cut it). In other words they'll end up being a payload carrier format as much as a syndication format. That's a role similiar to SOAP.

I guess what I'm thinking is that if Atom/RSS was "RDF-happy" (it doesn't have to /be/ RDF) I would have flexible, explicit, metadata applicable to the content inside. If that content happens to be RDF all the better. But not as RDF/XML :)

Lucas
(April 16, 2004 09:44 PM #)

About "given the way RSS2.0 is and the way Atom is shaping up, they can't extend to cater for domain specific content (namespaces on their own don't cut it)", that makes me think of a thought experiment I did to see what using RSS to carry playlists would look like -- see http://gonze.com/rss_plus_time.html.

What I found out was that it was a fatally awkward mix. The weblog concept is too strongly embedded in RSS for it to work easily with the concept of playlists.

Maybe if the RDF fork of the playlist WG (e.g. http://playlist.musicbrainz.org/playlist/moin.cgi/LeighDodds) gets rolling, the pieces will fall into place.

Asbjrn Ulsberg
(April 17, 2004 09:34 AM #)

Where's that writeup, Bill?

Robert Sayre
(April 17, 2004 10:47 PM #)

I've never understood how "flexible, explicit metadata" is useful absent working artificial intelligence. It sounds nice, but how does it help? What does RDF-unfriendly syndication preclude?

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