May the source be with you

Danny, suffering from a cold leading to procrastinitis (I hear you on this one), hooked on a port of the WP 2813 theme to MT, LiveJournal, and Typepad to create an XSLT transform of the stylehseet items into RDF. This is based on the continuing effort to add more microformat labeling of page contents in order to enhance discoverability.

It’s a nice bit of code, but it strikes me as less than an efficient method when it comes to providing semantic information about the contents of the page.

The same processes that deliver the page for human consumption are also the same processes that provide the same data for syndication. It’s only a small step to then take the same information and provide this in an already formatted RDF format, accessible just by tacking on either /rdf or /meta at the end of the document.

If the issue is then one of static pages, such as those provided by Movable Type, couldn’t one generate static meta pages, as easily?

I’m not pushing against microformats. To me it makes sense to use ‘intelligent’ CSS class names for the different constructs contained within the page, because it’s more consistent and makes it easier to move templates between tools. Besides, might as well start smart than dumb.

But shouldn’t the approach be to generate all the content–human readable content using semantic markup and smart CSS labels, syndication feeds, and RDF–dynamically? Rather than generate one and then use XSLT to ‘transform’ to the other? Or is the bigger issue: let’s all start being consistent with our CSS–make it do double duty. Start bringing presentation, format, layout, and semantics into a cohesive whole.

Of course, I could have completely misread Danny’s intentions, too.

Regardless, I need to clean up my own CSS files. After I finish the Adding Ajax book, first.

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