Free Hogg

11.9.06

IE8 is Going to Be Down with Microformats? We’ll see

Filed under: Internet Explorer, Microsoft, Open Source — Hogg @ 6:17 am

Update 2: See Chris Wilson’s comment below.

Update: See Chris Messina’s comment.

This would be one of the smartest things I’ve seen out of Microsoft in some time. Internet Explorer 8, or IE “Next,” may have support for microformats.

If you’re unfamiliar with microformats, allow Wikipedia to enlighten you.

Microformats are markup that allow expression of semantics in an HTML (or XHTML) web page. Programs can extract meaning from a standard web page that is marked up with microformats.

In other words, you add some extra markup in your (x)html and it makes it easier for computers to know what it is that it’s reading. For example, contact information, music reviews, calendars, and a bunch of other stuff all can be marked up with their respective microformat specifications, and everyone’s life is easier.

According to All About Microsoft, Chris Wilson, IE’s platform architect, spoke about IE8 and microformats at the Ajax Experience 2006.

Wilson touted the harnessing of microformats, like Microsoft has done with its Live Clipboard effort, as “real world stuff” that will “make the Web much more usable.”

I think this would be a great step in the right direction for a browser that seems to have been ignoring all of the developments of the web up until just recently.

Wilson did say, however, in a comment on the FactoryCity blog, that he “didn’t say anything that sounded like ‘IE will support microformats'” in his talk. I wasn’t there, and I didn’t hear what he said. Did he slip some info that he wasn’t supposed to and now is trying to cover his tracks? I don’t know. We’ll just have to wait and see.

Now, if they can just get IE8 to pass the Acid2 test we can all be happy.

By the way, there’s also talk about microformats on the Firefox brainstorming wiki.

via FactoryCity

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2 Comments »

  1. Chris did follow up with me and reiterated what he said in his comment. Apparently Mary Joe Foley misquoted him in the article — and that he didn’t necessarily endorse microformats but rather semantic markup practices in general.

    I’m hopeful that they’ll use microformats, though, and not go inventing their own stuff outside the community review process. We shall see in due time.

    Comment by Chris Messina — 11.9.06 @ 11:49 am

  2. I do endorse microformats – I just didn’t say “IE8 will support microformats”. I’m not sure what exacly that means – I think one of the beautiful things about microformats is they’re useful without the browser needing to “support” them. I’d also say I don’t know why we would reinvent the wheel of microformats.

    Comment by Chris Wilson — 11.17.06 @ 2:02 pm


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