A milestone in XML

Dave Winer dave at userland.com
Sun May 9 19:30:38 BST 1999

Dear XML-DEV people,

In March we decided that RSS-based syndication was too good to pass up, so 
we quickly built a syndication server in Frontier 6 to compete with 
My.Netscape.Com. Netscape welcomed us by adding them to their directory. 
(Thanks Netscape!)

RSS is an XML-based format that represents what we in the Frontier 
community call a "weblog". It's frequently updated site that points to 
stories on and off-site, that identifies an audience and feeds links to 
them. Until RSS came along the only format people were using was HTML. RSS 
changed that.

The Motley Fool, Mozilla.Org and Slashdot are examples of online services 
that are supporting RSS. We're rendering them using Frontier's content 
management system, for now in HTML. But we are also getting ready to do an 
open source release of our server software, and all its interfaces will be 
in XML and XML-RPC, so we're not wanting to be in a controlling position 
from a standpoint of software or registrations. We are not using RSS to 
artificially drive sales of our CMS, we want to win because we're the best, 
not because we have a corner on the market. (Hint to Vignette.)

We've decided to open the whole thing. It's too good to try to hold onto. 
We're doing easy to use software to develop and maintain weblog sites, and 
of course they will all aggregate using the next generation of RSS and 
today's RSS. Who knows in what perverted ways this content will flow around 
the net? I'm totally looking forward to participate in the creative chaos 
that's coming!

Today's milestone is that we're publishing the list of URLs that have been 
registered so far. This is a dynamic list, it's recalc'd every time you hit 
the page.


 From the XML-DEV perspective, the milestone is that XML is catching up 
with content developers. It's not too complex and the rewards are not 
elusive. Put up an RSS version of your site, and you get more flow. An 
obvious benefit.

Tomorrow we'll release the source code for the server and during the next 
few weeks we'll add XML-RPC interfaces and document them.

Dave Winer
UserLand Software

PS: This message is also at http://discuss.userland.com/msgReader$5891.

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