Microformats: inline annotation vs. binding
Hey readers, help me guide my scattered thought processes.
I’ve been thinking lately about microformats, which are typically characterized by inline annotation through existing class attributes in XHTML. You put the rel=”self” or whatever right into the document, on the element you’re talking about.
Another approach, that used by CSS itself, is to keep all the extra information bunched together in a different place. There’s all kinds of phrases, usually beginning with “separation of” to describe this pattern. And to do so requires a specific way to connect the external information, typcially called a binding. For CSS, it’s Selectors.
OK, so far so good. Except that it’s possible, and common in some cases, to have style attributes, taking CSS in the inline annotation direction. The lines are blurrier than they might seem at first.
So, Yahoo! has started publicly supporting microformats, which is great, because they are the ones generating the pages. What if you want to make a microformat out of 3rd party XHTML without touching it?
Here’s my questions. Feel free to comment below. I’m travelling, but I’ll try to moderate asap.
- In the specific case of CSS, how do you decide inline vs. binding?
- Are any microformat efforts currently looking at a binding approach vs. inline annotation? Which ones?
- What general principles should readers keep in mind for this discussion?