Atom 1.0 is an IETF standard

The Atom Syndication format is now a proposed IETF standard, which means that it is a first class IETF citizen. An html version as well as links to the developing Atom protocol are available on the atompub.org web site.

I am really happy to be listed among the contributors, and I think Atom is a great improvement over RSS2.0. I am not yet sure how much of an improvement it is over RSS1.0, as I don't know the RSS1.0 standard in enough detail to be able to comment. The main advantage that RSS1.0 still has over Atom is that, being built on RDF, it has a very clear and solid extensibility framework. (That RSS1.0 needed some improvement is in part visible by the fact that an RSS1.1 draft spec has been delivered recently) Atom could have become clearly and unequivocally a better standard than RSS1.0 had it been possible to tweak it just a little bit to make it RDF compatible. The case for the extensibility advantages of RDF were very clearly made by Dan Brickley in an email to the atom mailing list a year ago, on the 18 August 2004. But as the rest of the thread shows some people found it very difficult to understand this point. There is clearly a lot of learning by experience the hard way that is going to take place before Dan's points are well understood and assimilated.

What Atom has now clearly achieved though is to add clarity to every other aspect of syndication. Work on the RDF side of things is continuing on on the atom-owl mailing list which will hopefully help provide a standard ontology for the atom format.

And by the way, BlogEd (when publishing to a simple web server using ftp such as my personal blog), now publishes an Atom 1.0 feed.

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