A Milestone in XML

Dave Winer dave at userland.com
Sun May 16 16:48:02 BST 1999

 >> a) it's incredibly simple (too simple, in fact)
 >> b) it's probably the most widely supported XML application so far,both 
in terms of software and content

Both statements are true! That's why we're excited about RSS. It's a 
simple-enough beginning, and it has the backing of a portal, not just a 
company. That's where the rubber meets the road, AFAIK.

RSS in fact is weaker than our own <scriptingNews> format, an example of 
which can be found here:


We've been able to build a great search engine off <scriptingNews> format, 
it's explained here:


Such a search engine is possible with RSS, and we will do it. It will be a 
very smart search engine because it will have human beings deciding what 
goes in it. So if you get to know an expert, and think he or she might know 
something about something you're interested in, just go to the search 
engine and ask.

RSS, weak as it is from a technical standpoint, embodies a lot of the 
promise of XML. It's an excellent start. And it's proof that you don't have 
to grok all the computer science on the W3C site to be powerful with XML.


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