[wp-hackers] JSON Syndication
MattPat at mattpat.net
Wed Feb 21 00:51:49 GMT 2007
I'm not trying to knock XML as a language. XML is very powerful, and
I believe that there are many places (particularly in rich documents)
where its uses are plentiful. However, I don't think syndication is
one of them.
> Please consider the needs of full text feeds with embedded markup.
> Once you do that JSON's no longer so simple.
And what exactly are the needs of full text feeds? I think that
matter is up to interpretation, but the way I see it, the entire
purpose of online syndication is to distribute a snippet of a larger
work in a format that piques the reader's interest, and encourages
them to visit the original source to read more. I do not see
syndication having the need to convey all of the semantic markup of
the document being syndicated. When I read an Atom feed, I honestly
don't really care where the author put emphasis. If I want that much
info, I'll click the link and read the whole article.
The format that's doing the syndication is only a container-- RSS is
a container, Atom is a container, and this JSON feed format would
also be a container. What would go in the content section could be
anything you want, just like Atom. I would probably add a type
property to each entry, so that you could specify if the content was
text/html, text/plain, or even something a little fancier. Find me an
Atom feed that can't be represented by JSON... bet it won't be easy.
There's no saying a JSON feed couldn't handle embedded markup (in
fact, I had always intended it to).
Of course, syndication is no use if it's ridiculously hard to
implement. I'm not saying that XML is all that bad, but JSON is much
simpler. Since JSON relates directly to programming data structures,
it's easier to handle and deliver to the people who want to read it.
> The syndication format I see there is much simpler than what people
> are sending today with Atom.
Well see, that's interesting, because I copied the most commonly used
elements from the Atom standard and just turned it into JSON.
> Yeah, I think he's probably confusing a particular schema with XML.
For the record, no, I was not. If I simply had a distaste for an XML
schema, I would have proposed a new schema, not a new method. ;)
> And I'm not even talking about the inevitable security bugs that
> syndicators send them.
fact, I think the callback feature of JSON should not be implemented
by scripts generating JSON feeds. Further, it will be encouraged (in
big bold letters ;)) that people using the feeds use a JSON
interpreter, rather than just eval()'ing it. That eliminates pretty
much every problem.
I'm not giving up just yet, I still think JSON has a lot of promise
as a syndication container. Thanks a lot for the input though! :)
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