Survey on the evolution of RSS

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From: Dave Winer (
Date: Tue Sep 05 2000 - 03:50:19 PDT

The discussion about the future of RSS continues. This morning I'm running a
survey to solicit the opinion of Scripting News readers. I've tried to draft
the choices to reflect the common advocacy for each of the levels.

Some of the discussers have said that members of this mail list favor one
approach, but as far as I know there's been no systematic attempt to poll
the list so that individuals can clearly express a preference.

The survey is here:">

(UserLand.Com membership is required. Each member has one vote, you can
change your vote.)

Here's the text in the survey form:

There have been a lot of discussions recently about the evolution of RSS, a
popular format for syndicating Web content. How do you think it should

o It's fine exactly as it is, don't change a thing.

o Add a few elements so it can become richer. It's a maturing format with a
large installed base, it needs to grow slowly to fit the needs of content
developers and aggregators, but keep it simple, that's the biggest thing
it's got going for it.

o Add "semantic sugar" for XML Namespaces so developers can use the Dublin
Core and create their own vocabularies, even if it makes RSS more complex
and the documentation harder to find. This is a good thing to do because it
avoids silly innovations like the "blink" tag, as happened in the browser
wars between Microsoft and Netscape.

o Add namespaces as above and add required elements that make it part of
RDF, so computer scientists can build new kinds of databases and search
engines that will do dramatic new things, not just with syndicated Web
content, but all kinds of information.

o I don't have an opinion about how RSS should evolve.


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