Buzzterm alert! OPML Browsers in the red!

Over at Scripting News, Dave Winer points to an post: Dan MacTough: “The buzz-o-meter on OPML browsers is off the charts right now.”

There is a geometric buzz building that will die off in a day or week or month or two, but there is a there there: a simple, standard way to express in XML a one-to-many relationship has been implicitly built in since the beginning. But the OPML 2.0 format proposes a couple of deceptively simple and powerful standard tags that could open up some cool innovation ala RSS: author (with a URL for a contact-me page, not an email in this spam-drowned world), a type (where you extend the content innovatively), and more. Read the spec at and listen to Dave’s March 1 Audiocast (MP3) for more insights.

As database developers, we’ve been thinking one-to-many relationships for a long time. “When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” Hierarchical database designers were a generation ahead of us. Dick Bard showed how to browse a database by pivoting the point of reference around the table of interest and browsing in a hierarchical fashion from there — in DOS! It will be interesting if the maturation of OPML leads to new ways of visualizing and communication data.

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This work by Ted Roche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.