This is a single archived entry from Stefan Tilkov’s blog. For more up-to-date content, check out my author page at INNOQ, which has more information about me and also contains a list of published talks, podcasts, and articles. Or you can check out the full archive.

Atom as a General Purpose Format

Stefan Tilkov,

Subbu Allamaraju:

The fact that this representation had to rely on extensions so heavily makes me wonder of the benefits of using the Atom Syndication Format for this representation. Of course, it is entirely possible to argue that, any general purpose feed reader or Atom client can interpret the Atom-specific elements in this entry, and "value-added" clients can interpret the extensions to provide more features. It is true. But this argument is not strong enough.

I couldn't agree more. I can see more value in putting the extensions (as Microformats) into the embedded XHTML for each entry; but otherwise, using a specifically tailored XML format yields about the same benefit in terms of generic tool support as an Atom feed that's full of extensions.