Friday, February 17, 2006

Feeds and Aggregation for Non-Content

RSS, Atom, and Feeds, oh my! All terms that get tossed around lately more often than Dick Cheney hunting jokes on the Daily Show. In a world of increasing information overload, feeds and aggregation are the emerging solution to tackling the problem of "How do I deal with all this stuff I could know?"

Like any new technology, feed syndication is not without its problems and limitations, and I would like to bring up a limitation today: the Web is more than a source of content, its a collection of interfactions with that content, and feeds only syndicate the content, ignoring the interaction.

Where is the syndication of interactivity to various web services? To begin with, how about letting my news reader include all the commentary to the article and allowing me to comment myself, without going to the original website? As long as I'm getting new recipes every day, why can't I just as easily (and, from the same place) submit my own? The web was always meant as a two-way medium (the original web browser allowed you to edit and repost pages you had access to), so if RSS is the evolution of the web, it needs to bring interaction along with the content.

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I write here about programming, how to program better, things I think are neat and are related to programming. I might write other things at my personal website.

I am happily employed by the excellent Caktus Group, located in beautiful and friendly Carrboro, NC, where I work with Python, Django, and Javascript.

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