More movement in the quest for a simpler FOAF: Johannes Ernst now proposes to enhance RSS to be a bearer for FOAFy data structures:
“When I tried to explain the RSFOAF idea to somebody last Friday, I got thinking: from an information structure perspective, how exactly is the set of members in my social network different from the set of gifts on an Amazon gift list? Well, it isn’t, at least not much. So … if RSS works for gift lists and other sets, why not for FOAF? Reminder to self: RSS is becoming the universal subscription format, so why not use it?”
This is an example of how that might look like if mixed with a style sheet – quite impressive.
However – it’s quite a bit closer to the original than the simple RSFOAF idea, and it mandates an XML format which RSFOAF did not. I actually liked that part best in the RSFOAF idea – people’s identity information today is in sooo many different formats: LinkedIn, Friendster, OpenBC, VCARD, Plaxo, what have you. I’d much rather have a web service understand all these different formats than me having to care about them, much less convert them into another format.
Now, let’s wait for Johannes to come up with a better idea next week, shall we? ;)