This is similar to the SMBmeta.xml initiative proposed by Dan Bricklin. Imagine if every blog had an XML file which specified various parameters like bloggers’s name, location (city and country), blog’s starting date, brief profile of blogger, specific categories covered (perhaps taken from DMOZ or Yahoo’s categories), format of the archives directories, link to RSS file, etc. This file could then be botted and built into a directory, just the way the RSS files are picked up. Having the metadata would make it much easier for us to find other bloggers based on geography or interest. Users could be given a front-end to generate this file, which would be stored in the home directory of their blog.

I’m sure others sould have thought of this. [The closest I found was this by N.Z.Bear.] Maybe, we need to start an initiative to define this and get bloggers to do this. The reason I feel that the metadata needs to be created by the blogger is because a blog is so much about the person. It isn’t easy to get a person’s information from the blog, unless the blogger has an “About Me” page. That too is quite unstructured. I want to use blogs to identify experts in specific areas. This is well-nigh impossible to try and build up manually (even though we intend to give it a try in BlogStreet).

In fact, in blogs, what needs to be really categorised (and searched) is the blog post. That is the basic element from which blogs are constructed. Today, the blog post gets lost in the page. While the BlogMeta.xml may not still take us to the blog post, it (along with the RSS feed) has enough meta information to treat each blog post separately, and thus more accurately collate opinions from across the blogspace.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.