Showing posts with label Microformats. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Microformats. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Metadata Harvested

Jason Ronallo at Preliminary Inventory of Digital Collections writes about Common Crawl, Web Data Commons, and Microdata.
The other day I discovered the Web Data Commons, which is building on top of the Common Crawl to extract Microformat, Microdata, and RDFa data and make it available for free download. This means that there is starting to be free structured data from a big portion of the Web available for for anyone to play with at very low cost. Common Crawl takes care of the crawling and then Web Data Commons will do data extraction. This opens up new possibilities for services, specialized search, and aggregations of content. Big web data is being opened up for small startups and individuals.
Is your library being crawled? Does it have metadata able to be harvested? Should it? Just asking.

Monday, January 10, 2011

COinS Generator

It seems the COinS Generator is not working, at least when given a DOI it returns the target not a Content Object in Spans. Is there no alternative tool? I couldn't find one. If that is the case, is it because COinS is pretty useless and no one bothered to create another generator? If COinS are useful, maybe another instance of the generator or a different but similar service would be a good thing.

In principle, I like microformats. Anything that supplies more semantics to information is something I tend to support. COinS seem like a very useful microformat, nothing in RDFa, that I know of, is a decent substitute. What's happening here?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Intro to Microformats

Microformats: Digging Deeper into the Web by Ben Ward is a short introduction to the topic. It would have been nice to see some mention of COinS, since this is a publication for information workers.
Extracting, repurposing and combining information is a core activity for info pros so it's good to know that we are being helped with this on the Web, even if we are not aware of it. Ben Ward describes how microformats - vocabularies which enable recurring information to be described and then reused - are making content available in a richer form and facilitating the combining of data.

Monday, February 08, 2010

RDF, COinS and Microformats

At the closing session of Electronic Resources and Libraries 2010 I had the chance to ask Ross Singer and John Blyberg about the place of microformats and COinS in information organization. Ross had just finished speaking about the importance of linked data. As I recall John said that microformats, COinS and other semantic markup is important even if it lacks links. Providing a machine readable understanding of a text string is good, it can lead to links. Ross said, without links markup is useful today but not a way to move forward. It is a tool for today but not the future. RDFa is the way forward.

The talk was the end of an excellent conference. Well worth attending.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Semantic Markup of Bibliography

The Academic Bibliography and Institutional Repository of Ghent University is using microformats and linked data. The weblog, TekTok - Digital Library Technology Blog, describes the decisions and formats involved.
In light of our recent study "DRIVER Technology Watch Report", we've started a little experiment adding semantic annotations to all records stored in the Academic Bibliography. With help of minor changes to the application, which are invisible to the human eye but easily readable by machines harvesting our web pages, we hope to gain insight in new models for data exchange.
Lots of APIs to access the data too.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

HTML5: Microdata

The use of microdata (i.e. microformats) is being considered by the HTML community. A Draft Recommendation has just been released. That would mean it is not yet a standard, still open to comments. "Sometimes, it is desirable to annotate content with specific machine-readable labels, e.g. to allow generic scripts to provide services that are customised to the page, or to enable content from a variety of cooperating authors to be processed by a single script in a consistent manner."

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Problems with Microformats

This is old news, but new to me and maybe someone else. There are some basic problems with many of the microformats, including the hCalendar. The BBC has stopped using microformats.
Since /programmes first went live we've been working to ensure that programme data was accessible to people and machines alike. The API design was baked in at the application design stage. Similarly we've worked on adding microformats to HTML pages as a lightweight API. All broadcasts use the hCalendar microformat to add start times, end times, broadcast channels etc.

Unfortunately there have been a number of concerns over hCalendar's use of the abbreviation design pattern.

They were considering RDFa as an alternative.

So, does anyone know of any tools to easily create RDFa? Something to just plug in the info and have it pop out?

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Microformats, Rel-Tag

I like microformats, just another metadata format really. Lately I've been looking at the rel-tag. It says what a page is about. Can it handle a phrase "Paul Spudis", for example? Doesn't seem to be able to do that. Pretty worthless otherwise. Examples? I've been using the hCal microformat and that seems to work pretty well. With my Firefox extension I can drop the info right into Outlook. I've got the rel-tag to work but can't seem to get a phrase to work. Saying a page is about the Lunar and Planetary Institute is a lot more useful than saying it is about institute. Any suggestions? Anyone else using microformats?

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Yahoo Search Monkey

Another step towards the Semantic Web, Yahoo SearchMonkey.
SearchMonkey is fundamentally about transforming the way search results are compiled and displayed by leveraging the same structured data that powers the millions of pages indexed by Yahoo! Search. By sharing structured data with Yahoo!, site owners and content publishers can build more useful, relevant and visually appealing search results, which can increase the quantity and quality of traffic from Yahoo! Search....

You can share data by embedding microformats, using semantic web standards such as RDF, sharing an XML data feed directly with Yahoo! Search, or using the SearchMonkey developer tool to build custom data services that extract structured data from your pages.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


Microformats University: 100+ Articles and Resources by Jessica Hupp.
Microformats are small formatting pieces designed to make your data easier to read by both users and software. Although their use is not widespread, it’s important that every web developer becomes familiar with them, as they’re sure to be an integral part of the web’s future. Because of this, there are a number of articles and resources out there devoted to microformats. We’ve compiled more than 100 of the best here.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

W3C Completes Bridge Between HTML/Microformats and Semantic Web

Big news from the W3C, GRDDL.
Today, the World Wide Web Consortium completed an important link between Semantic Web and microformats communities. With "Gleaning Resource Descriptions from Dialects of Languages", or GRDDL (pronounced "griddle"), software can automatically extract information from structured Web pages to make it part of the Semantic Web. Those accustomed to expressing structured data with microformats in XHTML can thus increase the value of their existing data by porting it to the Semantic Web, at very low cost.

"Sometimes one line of code can make a world of difference," said Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director. "Just as stylesheets make Web pages more readable to people, GRDDL makes Web pages, microformat tags, XML documents, and data more readable to Semantic Web applications, opening more data to new possibilities and creative reuse."

Friday, May 18, 2007

Jon Udell's Interviews with Innovators

Lou Rosenfeld is the guest this week on Jon Udell's Interviews with Innovators.
Jon Udell speaks with Lou Rosenfeld on this week's Interviews with Innovators. Fellow superpatron Edward Vielmetti put Jon in touch with Lou, with whom he shares an affection not only for Ann Arbor, Michigan, but also for a cluster of topics including information architecture, search analytics, print and online publishing, designing for usability, tagging, and microformats.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


John Allsopp, has just come out with the book, Microformats: Empowering Your Markup for Web 2.0. In the Five Pertinent Questions column he briefly discusses the importance of this mark-up.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Karen Coombs at Library Web Chic points to a nice Firefox extension, Operator.
Operator leverages microformats that are already available on many web pages to provide new ways to interact with web services.

Operator lets you combine pieces of information on Web sites with applications in ways that are useful. For instance, Flickr + Google Maps, + Google Calendar, Yahoo! Local + your address book, and many more possibilities and permutations. All of these scenarios are possible due to Microformats, an emerging standard for injecting semantics into HTML.

Have to see if it works with COinS.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


As a cataloger who appreciates all forms of structured mark-up, I'm putting this on my to-read list. Microformats: Empowering Your Markup for Web 2.0 I like microformats and hope they become more widespread on the Web. Can't link to WorldCat, since it has yet to make it into any libraries.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Microformats Book

Now available from O'Reilly, Using Microformats by Brian Suda. Is a 56 page PDF file a Book?
Microformats let you share structured information in HTML web pages. Although the information is visible to human readers--as it should be--software can also extract structured information. This Short Cut is a general introduction to the history of microformats and an explanation why these ideas are rocketing to the forefront of technology. It includes information and examples on how to add all of the popular microformats used and consumed today to your documents. Also included is discussion of where the idea behind microformats originated and why the microformats process is so open for everyone to contribute. With millions of instances of microformats on the Web, isn't it about time to learn what it's all about?

Friday, September 15, 2006


Some microformat cheat sheets (quick reference) are available. Dave Child has a very nice design on his. Brian Suda has a more compact version.

"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."--Wikipedia entry.

Seen on Planet Code4lib.

Friday, May 12, 2006


Microformats are emerging metadata schema that use HTML for mark-up. Currently there are microformats for:
  • hCalendar - for events
  • hCard - for contact information
  • hReview(spec) - for reviews
  • rel-directory(spec)- for distributed directory creation and inclusion
  • rel-nofollow, an attempt to discourage 3rd party content spam (e.g. comment spam)
  • rel-tag(spec) - for decentralized tagging (Folksonomy)
  • xFolk(spec) - for tagged links
  • XFN - for social relationships
  • XOXO - for lists and outlines