Patrick Joyce

October 18, 2007

NovaRUG Recap

I went to the NovaRUG meeting tonight. Here is a recap.


Ray Daly gave an introductory talk to microformats. It was a good introduction to what they are, included a few examples of pages tagged with hCard and hCalendar information, and showed off a few places where microformats are being used.

It was a good talk, but I think it may have glossed over what is cool about microformats: they require almost no effort to implement. One day I decided to add microformats to EasilyInvited. I had heard of them, but never used them or done any in depth reading. In 30 minutes I decorated all event instances with hCalendar markup.

The downside is that the killer app for microformats has yet to be written. Furthermore, the apps that are out there (like Operator) while cool are used by almost no one. So if no one uses them why should you implement them? First off, no one uses them yet Why not? The cost is miniscule and if nothing else the css classes they are based on make it easy to style your HTML.

Microformats are the lowercase semantic web. They are deliberately limited. They aren’t trying to solve all the ontology building problems that RDF and the capital Semantic Web are. They’re also here, work, and are based on the familiar technology of the current web. They’re REST and RDF is SOAP. Guess which one I prefer ;)

Open Layers

Gary Hurder then gave a brief presentation on some GIS stuff. He walked through OpenLayers a javascript library for displaying map information in modern browsers. Think of it as the google maps panning and zooming interface (plus a bunch of other stuff) with the ability to use whatever GIS data you want. It is pretty impressive.

More Articles on Software & Product Development

Agile With a Lowercase “a”
”Agile“ is an adjective. It is not a noun. It isn’t something you do, it is something you are.
How Do You End Up With A Great Product A Year From Now?
Nail the next two weeks. 26 times in a row.
Build it Twice
Resist the urge to abstract until you've learned what is general to a class of problems and what is specific to each problem.