February 16, 2004

XML for Friends

XML and technologies that use it have always inspired me. When I created Ben's Friends my plan (which still holds) was to create an actual "friends" network. Not long after began the process with Moveable Type I came across FOAF.

At that time FOAF had just begun and was very much in its infancy. Today, it's a bit farther along.

You may have noticed the small (but growing) "Stickers" section at the bottom right of HatShop. One is to get the best standalone browser available and the other is for my (currently minimal) FOAF file. Lord willing, I'll be developing it further and helping the rest of the Ben's Friends family create some as well.

Now, single files about relationships are great, but what if you wanted to record the relationship between the author of a document and the people in it? Or maybe you'd like to link the names of people mentioned in your online photo album to more information about them, but you wanted people to know what relationship you have with the person of that name? It's all possible using XFN. The XHTML Friends Network is really just a standardized way to record relationships in the "rel" attribute of an <a /> tag. It's a solid concept and will likely contemplate FOAF well.

Lord willing, Ben's Friends will be using them both in the future. For now, enjoy the ideas. 8o)

Posted by TheIdeaMan at February 16, 2004 08:51 PM | TrackBack

whaaaaaaaaow! i remember those discussions in the DC about establishing net connections, and about information hierarchy, and about taking over the world. :-) this is quite cool. the ideas have great enjoyment value, and anytime you want to give me some further direction/tutaledge, i'm in.

Posted by: apelles at February 17, 2004 02:37 PM
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