August 27, 2023

Auto-post to from Wordpress - A bad idea

As soon as I emailed Ozh about a plugin that automatically sends your new posts to, than I find someone has just released one. As soon as I finished reading the description, I suddenly realised what a bad idea this is. will be flooded with posts from Wordpress blogs — blog spam from this plugin’s users.

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Microformats aren’t relevant

Microformats are sets of XHTML standards to present various bits of metadata on websites. They’re usually used for presenting trivial sets of metadata (hence the ‘micro’ monicker). Microformats include the XFN (XHTML Friends Network) and the rel=tag attribute for links.

The site says that microformats are “Designed for humans first and machines second, microformats are a set of simple, open data formats built upon existing and widely adopted standards.” While I applaud the effort to make a standard to help developers, I’m not sure microformats is terribly relevant. I’d have to argue that humans don’t see the difference between one way of marking up and another, even if they are standardised. So it doesn’t make a difference to the population. You don’t have to look further than the XFN format for evidence of irrelevancy. It was proposed two years ago by Matt Mullenwegg and has yet to become anything more than an interesting idea. Microformats are certainly not “widely adopted”. But having said that, there is one popular microformat — Technorati’s rel=tag attribute. Unfortunately, the only one who seems to be using it is … yup, Technorati.

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