Black Friday

On Friday I did the ‘insane thang’ and went shopping with the familia on Black Friday. I haven’t read any reports yet on how sales went, but if the Silver Sands mall in Sandestin was any indication, retailers should be rolling in the green tonight. One choice quote from a Polo Store clerk “Yeah, were running out of stuff, I’m a little concerned there might be trouble.” Trouble? Well, if everyone at the mall decided to make a run on them, they would definitely be outnumbered. Of course I did not fall prey to the hype. I managed to hold back and only blow about a grand on clothing. Ha, take that! You wallet sucking leaches!

Ayers on OPML

Don’t get me wrong, I think this stuff is fun, and if OPML were to get a solid spec it could potentially be very useful. The fact that it is limited compared to XHTML could be an advantage: the constraints of RSS compared to HTML (or for that matter RDF) almost certainly had a lot to do with the widespread adoption for the syndication application, and that’s put a lot of useful data on the Web. But if OPML is heading that way it should really lose it’s reliance on an out-of-date date spec (…), the unreliable mess that is escaped markup in content, the application-specific presentational elements and maybe gain a namespace so it can be freely mixed with other XML formats. For now it remains fool’s gold.


My take – you can build an incredibly complex protocol / standard / tool to solve all the worlds problems, but odds are nobody will adopt it if they can’t grep the basics in 30 seconds, or implement a sample in under a minute or two. Complexity is needed when solving advanced problems, but adoption always requires a face of simplicity. A perfect example – RSS 2.0 vs. RDF and Atom.