As I pore over the Atom syndication format for a writing project, I'm bumping into things that are new to me and probably old hat to the developers working on it. Atom includes an optional id element that provides a globally unique, never-changing identifier for a feed. One purpose of this element is to make clients smarter about syndication feeds that change URLs: If a client finds a feed at a new URL with an id it recognizes, it can stop looking for the feed at the old URL. An Atom identifier uses a new naming ... read more

Last week's discussion of Movable Type's RSS 2.0 template on Workbench prompted e-mail from Anil Dash of the Six Apart Dashes. He wanted feedback on the possibility of adopting Brad Choate's "non-funky" RSS 2.0 template in the upcoming release of Movable Type 3.0. I supported this idea because it's close to what I had in mind. Choate's template differs from my proposal only in two significant ways: the item-level link element is dropped in favor of guid and weblog entry descriptions are provided as excerpts rather ... read more

People involved in RSS and Atom development spend too much time bickering about the past and too little trying to move things forward in a constructive way. I'm as guilty of this as anyone -- there's only a small group of cranks who understand this stuff well enough to get angry about it, and I like arguing with most of them. Now that I'm becoming familiar with Movable Type for reasons I can't talk about yet, I can wade into the long-running controversy over the software's default RSS 2.0 template. Instead of ... read more