... personal wiki, blog and notes
Bryan's Blog 2008/05/07
atom for moles
As we progress with our MOLES updating, the issue of how best to serialise the MOLES content becomes rather crucial, as it impacts storage, presentation, and yes, semantic content: some buckets are better than other buckets!
Atom (rfc4287) is all the rage right now, which means there will be tooling for creating Atom and parsing etc, and Atom is extensible. It's also simple. Just how simple? Well, the meat of it boils down to one big UML diagram or three smaller diagrams which address:
The basic entities (feeds and entries),
The basic content (note that the xhtml could include RDFa!)
and links (note that while atom has it's own link class for "special links", xhtml content can also contain "regular" html links).
These three diagrams encapsulate what I think I need to know to move on with bringing MOLES, observations and measurements, and Atom together.
You know, those of us out there in the Ruby/Python/Erlang fringes might think we're building the Next Big Thing, and we might be right too, but make no mistake about it: as of today, Java is the Big Leagues, the Show, where you find the most Big Money and Big Iron and Big Projects. You don't have to love it, but you'd be moronic to ignore it.
... and the programmers ask for Big Money, write Big Code, and we can't afford the Big Money to pay for them, or the Big Time to read the code ... let alone maintain it.
(Which is not to say I have any problems with someone else giving/selling me an application in Java which solves one of my problems - provided they maintain it, I'm not that moronic :-)
There's nothing like a big volcano to remind one of our precarious hold on planet earth. Thanks to James for drawing my attention to Chaiten, and the fabulous pictures, via: Alan Sullivan, nuestroclima and the NASA earth observatory.
Along with genetics1, volcanism was the other thing that could have kept me from physics ... neither quite made it :-).
Anyway, I'm not quite sure what sort of volcano it is, nor of the real import of the explosions thus far, but as a caldera type volcano it could be more impressive yet ... if it's even vaguely similar to Taupo. When I was a kid we grew up with stories of the 7m deep pyroclastic flow in Napier (a little over 100 km away).