Joining the HTML5 Working Group

I should be working on my book, if I don’t want my pitiful little reserve to be sucked dry before I’m finished. At the same time, though, I feel engaged with the discussion about “microdata” et al in relation to the HTML5 working group. And I figure the writing I’m doing providing new use cases and examining the differences between the HTML5 editor’s proposal and RDFa, can be useful to my book. There’s some other stuff happening at the HTML WG related to accessibility I’m also interested in, and I’m keeping a watchful eye on SVG/HTML5.

Sam Ruby has suggested I join the HTML Working group, as an Invited Expert. It doesn’t cost anything, though I am concerned about the time commitment. I’m not a joiner, per se, but I do have strong opinions about certain aspects of the specification. Now if only some big company that isn’t teetering on the edge or ruin would hire me to be their standards wonk.

What? No takers? Afraid of being singed by the Bird?


Anyway, I’ll put in my request to the HTML WG and we’ll see if I’m acceptable to the powers-that-be.

RDF Semantics

Use cases and comparison of RDFa/HTML5 Microdata

I’m now a member of the HTML Working Group at the W3C, as an invited expert. I was rather surprised at how fast the membership was accepted. Surprised and faintly alarmed. I imagined existing members sitting around in the dark, rubbing their hands together and murmuring, “Ahh. Fresh meat.”

I’ve been working with Philip in comments trying to compare RDF triples from RDFa and RDF tripes from Ian’s Microdata proposal, but this type of effort deserves a more in-depth test. I still have use cases to deliver, but the ones I’ve uploaded to the HTML WG don’t seem to be generating any discussion. Instead, I’m going to do one more document, with select use cases, hopefully ones Ian’s already covered so I can compare the RDFa approach (which were typically provided with the use cases— all the use cases were provided by RDFa folks, from what I can see), and the Microdata proposal approach.

In the meantime, Ian has renamed @property to @itemprop because of the concerns we raised. This insures that there is no overlap on terminology between RDFa and Ian’s Microdata proposal. There is a still a requirement, though, that the Microdata proposal be capable of generating the same RDF as RDFa, and that will be the next set of tests.

I’m open for suggestions as to the use cases to single out for testing. And I promise to be fair in my effort. After all, I’m a member of the W3C HTML WG now—I have a responsibility to be both objective and fair, in the interest of producing the best specification.


RDFa in Drupal core

While I’m in the process of looking more closely at the Microdata proposal, I wanted to note that today marked the end of the first day of the code sprint for incorporating RDFa into the core of Drupal 7.

Yes, when Drupal 7 hits the streets, 1.7 million Drupal web sites, and counting, will have built-in support for RDFa.