Dougal Campbell's geek ramblings

WordPress, web development, and world domination.

Meme Roundup

There have been several new memes lately that I have thoughts on, but I just haven’t had the time to comment on them here. I still don’t have time to discuss them in as much depth as I’d like, but here’s a quick summary:

  • RSS 1.1:

    I have mixed feelings on this. It fixes one of my biggest complaints about RSS 1.0, which was the requirement for the rdf:Seq list, which seemed redundant with the content elements. But it still doesn’t address the biggest problem that all RSS flavors have: it doesn’t specify how to handle HTML content.

  • Universal Subscription Mechanism:

    It took me a few minutes to understand what problem this is addressing. Basically, the idea is that we want a more user-friendly experience when people click on RSS feeds in their web browsers. The problem is that if you set up an application to handle certain MIME types under Windows, the application only gets the content, not the URL that the content came from. So, there’s not an easy way to add a feed to your RSS aggregator application by simply clicking the feed’s link. But by adding a self-link to your feed, as suggested by USM, we get a standard way for a feed to specify a canonical URL for itself, thus allowing applications to handle the URL as needed.

    Just to offer other viewpoints on this, I’ll also point you to RevJim’s ideas on Feed Playlists.

  • rel=”nofollow”:

    Excellent. Google (and other search engines say they’ll be on-board, as well) provides us a simple way to link to things without suggesting that the link is an endorsement. Which means that we can suck the Googlejuice out of links from comment spammers. There’s still lots fo discussion going on about the implications, both pro and con. But for folks who actively manage their blogs, the general consensus is that this is a good thing. Eric Meyer has some good thoughts on the subject.

  • Technorati Tags:

    After all the work we put into the heirarchical categories for WordPress, the hot new thing is tags. I have to admit, the freeform nature of tags has me hooked. Between and Flickr, there was already a lot of good taggy metadata synergy going on. Technorati’s support for tags has finally pushed me over the edge, and I’m going to be implementing a tags system here, using a tags4wp plugin created by Kellan, and improved by Sam Angove. c.f. A more scholarly paper on folksonomies, by Adam Mathes.

More when I have time!

About Dougal Campbell

Dougal is a web developer, and a "Developer Emeritus" for the WordPress platform. When he's not coding PHP, Perl, CSS, JavaScript, or whatnot, he spends time with his wife, three children, a dog, and a cat in their Atlanta area home.
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