Category: standards

A Little Less Metacrap

Jere¬≠my Kei¬≠th wrote a (typ¬≠i¬≠cal¬≠ly great) post about metacrap, the unnecce¬≠sar¬≠i¬≠ly ver¬≠bose and repet¬≠i¬≠tive meta¬≠da¬≠ta in the head of web doc¬≠u¬≠ments, that‚Äôs required for con¬≠tent to be more eas¬≠i¬≠ly share¬≠able across social media. I ful¬≠ly agree with his broad point‚Ää‚ÄĒ‚Ääthere‚Äôs an awful lot of crap in head‚Ää‚ÄĒ‚Ääbut there‚Äôs a flaw in his ini¬≠tial exam¬≠ples. It‚Äôs explained in this extract from Twitter‚Äôs Get¬≠ting Start¬≠ed [with Cards] Guide:

You‚Äôll notice that Twit¬≠ter card tags look sim¬≠i¬≠lar to Open Graph tags, and that‚Äôs because they are based on the same con¬≠ven¬≠tions as the Open Graph pro¬≠to¬≠col. If you‚Äôre already using Open Graph pro¬≠to¬≠col to describe data on your page, it‚Äôs easy to gen¬≠er¬≠ate a Twit¬≠ter card with¬≠out dupli¬≠cat¬≠ing your tags and data.

So actu­al­ly the meta­da­ta you need to cater for most social shar­ing is Open Graph, with a few extra tags just for Twitter:

<meta name="twitter:card" content="summary">
<meta name="twitter:site" content="@adactio">
<meta property="og:url" content="">
<meta property="og:title" content="Metadata markup">
<meta property="og:description" content="So many standards to choose from.">
<meta property="og:image" content="">

I mean, it’s still per­haps too much, and (as point­ed out) would prob­a­bly be best writ­ten as JSON-LD in the man­i­fest. But there’s no redun­dan­cy, so is not quite as bad as paint­ed in Jeremy’s arti­cle, even with his ele­gant squish­ing solution.

Eddystone ‚ÄĒ A Briefing Note on Google‚Äôs New Beacon Format

Yes¬≠ter¬≠day Google announced ‚ÄėEddy¬≠s¬≠tone‚Äô, a new open Blue¬≠tooth bea¬≠con for¬≠mat which works on Android and iOS. I‚Äôve been doing a bit of read¬≠ing about it to under¬≠stand the tech¬≠nol¬≠o¬≠gy and its poten¬≠tial, and I put togeth¬≠er a brief¬≠ing note about it for my col¬≠leagues. I‚Äôm a believ¬≠er in max¬≠imis¬≠ing returns on my con¬≠tent, so it seems like a good oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ty to repub¬≠lish that brief¬≠ing note here.

This is a very rapid and shal­low look into bea­cons, and I’ve no doubt made some omis­sions or inac­cu­ra­cies, so apolo­gies in advance for that. If you think I’ve made any huge over­sights or errors, please feel free to let me know in the comments.

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The Future of the Open Web

I’ve spent a lot of time in my career writ­ing and talk­ing about future web fea­tures, from CSS3 to Web Com­po­nents. But I’ve recent­ly come to realise that, while I still think these fea­tures are impor­tant, I’ve been miss­ing out on the big­ger pic­ture: the sur­vival of the open web. That sounds hyper­bol­ic, I know, but so many arti­cles I’ve read, con­ver­sa­tions I’ve had, and behav­iours I’ve observed, have led me to the con­clu­sion that the open web, in the form we know it now, is under threat.

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Best Practice for Creating Custom Elements

It looks like cus¬≠tom ele¬≠ments, and web com¬≠po¬≠nents in gen¬≠er¬≠al, are begin¬≠ning to break through into gen¬≠er¬≠al devel¬≠op¬≠er con¬≠scious¬≠ness, as I see more and more arti¬≠cles and talks dis¬≠cussing what they are, what they are good for, and how to make them.

As they‚Äôre not yet being used heav¬≠i¬≠ly in devel¬≠op¬≠ment, how¬≠ev¬≠er, I think there‚Äôs a good oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ty to define best prac¬≠tices in the way we use them. In this post I want to pro¬≠pose a best prac¬≠tice method for writ¬≠ing cus¬≠tom ele¬≠ments: I‚Äôll do that by com¬≠par¬≠ing two meth¬≠ods for cre¬≠at¬≠ing cus¬≠tom ele¬≠ments, along with the advan¬≠tages and draw¬≠backs of each.

Aside: it strikes me that I haven’t writ­ten about cus­tom ele­ments here on my own blog, despite hav­ing giv­en a few talks and writ­ten a few pub­lished arti­cles on the sub­ject. In case you’re not sure what they are, I rec­om­mend you read my Detailed Intro­duc­tion To Cus­tom Ele­ments first.

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Talking about Web Components with Eric Bidelman

In Sep¬≠tem¬≠ber of last year I asked Google‚Äôs Eric Bidel¬≠man some ques¬≠tions about web com¬≠po¬≠nents for a fea¬≠ture I was writ¬≠ing. Unfor¬≠tu¬≠nate¬≠ly it turned out there was no room in the arti¬≠cle for Eric‚Äôs answers, but I recent¬≠ly stum¬≠bled across them again and decid¬≠ed they are too good to go to waste, so here they are.

Thanks very much to Eric for answer­ing my ques­tions, and apolo­gies if the pas­sage of time has out­dat­ed any answers.

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Web Components: concerns and opportunities

On the 21st of March I had the plea¬≠sure of par¬≠tic¬≠i¬≠pat¬≠ing in the Web Com¬≠po¬≠nents pan¬≠el at Edge Conf, and the priv¬≠i¬≠lege of giv¬≠ing the intro¬≠duc¬≠tion to the pan¬≠el. I‚Äôm a strong advo¬≠cate of Web Com¬≠po¬≠nents and it was great to be able to pro¬≠vide my opin¬≠ion on them, along¬≠side some real experts in the field, as well as hear ques¬≠tions and feed¬≠back from the com¬≠mu¬≠ni¬≠ty. The main con¬≠cern which was raised is that, as devel¬≠op¬≠ers cre¬≠ate their own ele¬≠ments, some impor¬≠tant con¬≠sid¬≠er¬≠a¬≠tions ‚ÄĒ acces¬≠si¬≠bil¬≠i¬≠ty not least ‚ÄĒ could get for¬≠got¬≠ten about.

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I‚Äôve updat¬≠ed my Speak¬≠ing page to include more con¬≠fer¬≠ences, more videos, and a lit¬≠tle on my speak¬≠ing require¬≠ments and pref¬≠er¬≠ences. I‚Äôm plan¬≠ning to cut down on the num¬≠ber of talks I give in 2014 (twelve is too many), but am always open to inter¬≠est¬≠ing offers and oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ties, so please get in touch if you‚Äôre organ¬≠is¬≠ing an event.

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