Reading the chapter on Microformats in Indie Microblogging brought me back to uni where we were taught about the Semantic Web. I tell you, I feel exhausted just thinking about it now.

All these standards: RDF, OWLS, tautologies, and like seven other acronyms I’ve sinced forgotten. Each one building on top of the other like a gigantic wedding cake. And oh yeah, all of them using XML1 and requiring seven different namespaces and five different forms of URI’s to express even the most basic relationship.

It was the only part of the subject that didn’t seem fun. HTML? CSS? Great, sign me up! Keeping seven different XML files up to date when a relationship changes? No, thank you.

If there was ever an instance of technologists overengineering a solution without considering how it would be used to solve the problem, the Semantic Web is a great example.

  1. RDF did have a non-XML representation but I do remember being told that using it was discourage in favour of the XML standard. ↩︎