My first reaction last week to schema.org was pure excitement. “Finally. the semantic Web is going to make a real difference in the world of search” I gushed.
I’ve been spicing up my markup with Microformats for years. Any chance I have to add more semantics to a webpage, I’ll take.
A couple of months ago—impatient with the wait for the semantic Web to hit search—I started playing around with SPARQL to query RDFa datasets from DBpedia. I’ve known for several years that the semantic Web is the future, and I’m beyond psyched that I can start incorporating more semantics–real semantics, on a macro level–into projects I work on. Woohoo!
I just have to forget about RDFa if I want the VIP treatment from Google,Bing and Yahoo.
What about my beloved DBpedia; the jewel of semantic data knowledge bases? How are they going to deal with this? According to Christian Bizer, DBpedia might begin publishing Microdata with it’s next release, mapping DBpedia’s ontology to Schema.org’s with OWL.
What about Wikipedia itself though. How do they feel about these changes? It certainly affects their vast implementation of structured data.
And why the proprietary format again?
Granted, the W3C moves slowly
Yes, we’re all aware of the W3C’s painfully… slow… process of going from drafts to recommendations and standards, but to be fair, certain browser vendors (do I need to name names) are even slower to adopt them. It’s difficult to observe the adoption of Web standards in wild if a huge chunk of the market doesn’t even implement the specifications.
Internet Explorer. Okay, there, I said it. Like I had to. How ironic is it that that they’re 1 of the W3C’s 324 members? Discuss amongst yourselves ;)
Stepping away from my enthusiasm for search 3.0—at least for a minute or two—because something deserves attention:
As great as it is that structured data will really get some recognition in the world of search, wouldn’t it have been a good idea in the spirit of the open Web to get some public opinion on what to include/not include in schema.org?
Why Google wants control of the semantic Web
My observation is that with Google’s attempted (and many failed) advances into the world of social media, now is a good time to have some control in the semantic web. The social space opens up a whole new application for semantic technologies. Their also-ran +1 button will probably benefit from a ubiquitous schema.org and help in their competition with Facebook.
The schema.org news is sudden, and though I’ll gladly play along with my new Web 3.0 toys, Im really hoping that Mr BYG (Bing, Yahoo & Google—you heard it here first folks ;) ) will listen to the dev community, and take public opinion seriously.
Remember Web 2.0—2 way conversations—before quickly moving on to Web 3.0