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Posts Tagged ‘microformats’
Based on my extensive experience of applying microformats to templates in Wikipedia (and other MediaWiki installations) I’ve come to the following conclusion…
For attributes which can occur more than once (such as nickname or category in hCard), lists having, or in container having, that property should be parsed as lists of individual instances of that property.
should be treated as equivalent to:
The hCard microformat can distinguish between a person and an organisation, by the use of the org property:
<span class="fn">Andy Mabbett</span>
<span class="fn org">The Red Cross</span>
but it cannot distinguish between an organisation and a place:
<span class="fn org">The Wembley Stadium fan club</span>
<span class="fn org">Wembley Stadium</span>
treating them both as organisations.
On 31 December 2007, I described a way in which hCard microformat could be used to differentiate between hCards for places and organisations.
Despite this ten-day gap, Brian Suda, one of the microformats “admins”, the cabal who control microformats, complained that he’d only had two days to consider the matter, and that “More time is needed to fully look over the implications of this change.”
No objections to the method, nor issues with it, have been raised.
Toby Inkster’s superb microformats parser Swignition (formerly called “Cognition”) has supported the method since version 0.1-alpha8, released in May 2008.
One year on from my formal proposal, what changes have been made to the hCard specification, in this regard? None.
Almost two years after I first raised the issue (to a reaction from the cabal that runs the microformats “community” which began with denial and moved to hostility) the BBC have stopped using the hCalendar microformat due to accessibility concerns.
Maybe now something can be done to incorporate one of the several, more accessible proposed work-arounds, into the relevant standards?
Update: Patrick now has a post on the subject, at webstandards.org
As a child, I was often taken to our local shopping centre in Perry Barr, north Birmingham (since replaced by a tin shed with pretensions of being a mall) to see a Mynah bird (Acridotheres tristis). It resided in what I now realise was a ridiculously small cage, on the counter of a petshop, and would delight all and sundry by asking repeatedly, “Where’s George?”, wolf whistling, or performing another of its many acts of mimicry.
Now my ears are more attuned to such things I realise that the journey was unnecessary. Still living in Birmingham, I can hear the avian equivalent of Rory Bremner any time I wish, simply by opening a window and listening to the Mynah’s relatives, my local Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris). With the onset of autumn, they flock in ever increasing numbers, resplendent in new, strikingly sleek and spotty plumage, and very vocal. As well as having an uncanny ability to sound like any number of other birds, they have been known to imitate car alarms and mobile phones, and even children’s playground screaming.
The quiet suburban road where I live is rarely without Starlings, at any time of day, but the city-centre skies are no longer darkened by the flocks which came in to roost there in my childhood. A backfiring car would see thousands take off at once, and have pedestrians reaching for tissues to remove their supposedly “lucky” deposits from clothing or — worse — hair.
The birds in my garden are far better behaved, except when treated to their favourite delicacy: leftover, raw, shortcrust pastry. They descend from my and my neighbours’ rooftops the second I step back from the bird table, and the food disappears in moments, in a cloud of flying feathers and squawking and pecking bills, the birds mingling too rapidly to count accurately.
One particularly convincing, if annoying, individual has perfected the art of reproducing a Buzzard‘s (Buteo buteo) mewing call, no doubt heard in more open country. Ever gullible, I rush into the garden each time it performs this trick, in the hope of adding the real thing to my “garden list”. So far, without success.
[The above was written some time ago, with the intention of emulating the Guardian’s Country Diary column. As such, it has exactly 200 words, not counting the subsequent addition of scientific names. These are marked up with the draft Species Microformat, which I developed, and which is already being used on Wikipedia.]
It’s one year today since Bruce Lawson and James Craig published “hAccessibility“, about the misuse of the ‘abbr’ element in microformats (an issue I first raised on 20 September 2006 in Accessify Forums).
As recent events show, the microformats cabal still has its collective head up its own^W^W^W in the sand.
Despite suggestions for a workaround, a solution seems no nearer, thanks to their apparent indifference. Shame on them.