On Niall Kennedy's blog, Jeremy Zawodny asked what OPML is for. I answered in terms that might make sense to a Yahoo. "Jeremy, you could think of OPML as a way for users to author structures that work like dir.yahoo.com. It's like blogging but for hierarchies of links. Another way of looking at it is that RSS is designed for time-based info, news; and OPML is for structures of information that change less frequently, where what matters is the relationship between ideas."
1/14/04: Guidelines for more powerful OPML.
Roger Benningfield has implemented category OPML for JournURL.
RSS Labs has an OPML search engine that does it in the Googlish way I described so many years ago. When it finds what you're looking for in an OPML file, it offers to show it to you as a directory. Simple, brain-dead obvious, imho. Of course the other search engines only know about HTML. In an age when there are billions of feeds out there, it's getting pretty lame to only read HTML, don't you think!
Podcast: The story of the TechCrunch Directory box on Scripting News, the OPML behind it, Robert Scoble, Niall Kennedy, Matt Mullenweg and Mike Arrington. "Users and developers party together."
In the rush yesterday I mis-spelled Matt's last name (instead of "weg" I typed "web"), and in an email asked for a change in the URL for the by-category OPML for the WordPress blogs. Both changes evident here.
Scoble sets a developer straight about the proper way to address users. Good work Scoble. The guy is just trying to FUD you. It's great to see a user stand up to that kind of crap. Judge technology by results, not arrogance. There's no shortage of idiots who want you to justify your wants to them. Google says "It's a coder's world -- we just live in it." That's just plain wrong. Hubris. We live in god's world.
I wonder if any of you remember the PFS products. There was PFS:File and PFS:Report. Then PFS:Write, they had a graphics program, and a spreadsheet called PFS:Plan. Then I tried to remember what PFS stood for, I'm sure it didn't mean what I thought it meant.
David Mercer, via email: "I think that the Google/NASA deal stinks to high heaven of all sorts of unfair advantage to Google. Everything NASA does should, as all non-classified things are in Federal Agencies, be public domain. Sounds like Google are trying to get a super-cozy sweetheart deal on collaborations that sound to me a lot like they will help their core businesses, which have nothing whatsoever to do with NASA or their mission. Which is unlike, say, Boeing working with NASA, as things Boeing develops have to do with what NASA is up to, not merely in the other direction."
NASA press release announcing deal with Google.
David has a point. As a US taxpayer, I wonder why my government is doing deals to help one technology company and not all technology companies. Who bribed who to make that happen. Further, I don't understand why Google's search engine doesn't understand RSS. Shouldn't they take care of that before they worry about space travel, if that's what they're doing? And why don't their competitors' search engines take advantage of the billions of feeds out there? Come on MSN, Yahoo, Jeeves, let's go, there's some butt to kick here. And they say this industry is driven by innovation. Feh. It's driven by press releases.
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