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Claudio Monteverdi

Alexander Johannesen

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Mon, 30 Jun 2003 13:00:00 GMT

Notice! This blog is no longer updated as such, and the new spot to point your feedreaders and blurry eyes are https://shelter.nu/blog/

This also means no more comments here, and especially not you spammers, you filthy floatsam of the internet!

Echo? Echo!

For syndication of my pages, I use RSS. It is an old and simple format that all aggregators today can grok. But as more and more sites gets groked, more and more crud gets added to the format.

Lately a lot of people have gathered around to create Echo, a new format for syndication, very much like the good ol' RSS, only bigger, techier, all-swallowing and ... well, more complex. Do we need another complex format? In my eyes we don't, but then I'm not really into all that complex blogging; I want to say something with a few links, and RSS handles this without any problems. All the content management I leave to the http-workings of the net.

The people at Six Apart have got a list of "Why we need Echo" up. I'm obviously missing some important detail about this whole mess;

1. The RSS spec does not say how to encode content.

Why would you want to crud up the format further? In my eyes, RSS is about metadata, not the storage-container of the data itself. If you've got some advanced content, link to it.

2. XML-RPC is severely lacking in internationalization (I18N) support.

True, but not something that can't be fixed.

3. Content is represented differently in an API than it is in a syndicated feed.

Non-important; they are dealing with two different things.

4. Confusion over elements.

This is not the fault of RSS, but how people who shouldn't fiddle with the RSS "specs" mess things up. Besides, the confusion seems more to do with people not listening to Dave Winer than anything.

5. No universally-supported and -defined extensions.

Again, extensions are application-specific stuff. Why put it in as a part of the standard at all? Extensions are just that; it extends the standard. Duh. What else do we have the darn namespaces for anyways? What people fail is to create reasonable RSS feeeds where the extra crud adds to the feed, not break it.

I hope some brave soul could tell me why excactly we need to rush down another non-compatible lane just when aggregators, people and businesses are just starting to get the hang of RSS. Sigh.

Permalink (Mon, 30 Jun 2003 13:00:00 GMT)| Comments (2) | Content management
( Tue, Jul 1 2003 )
It's called 'progress' ;-) Actually I think a lot of it has to do with ownership. People are driven to create and own something of their own devices and with standards such as RSS, it is pretty easy to do so (compared with a new phone or computer).
RSS does me fine as well.
Alexander ( Tue, Jul 1 2003 )
I agree; it is more about taking the protocol away from Dave Winer than actually do some good; the next iteration of RSS is a better option for us all than a new beast. Microsoft and other biggies are sure to enter the scene (just as Google just have), and unless we all have a format to agree upon, they'll roll their own, and what is Echo then? Not much at all.