We’re going to have an Atom Community Meeting June 2nd at Sun’s Silicon-Valley offices. It’s widely known that Sam Ruby (with some help from me) has been trying to find Atom a home over in the IETF. I’m personally optimistic that that’ll work, but even if it does, the next time we could get the Atom community in a room would be at the August IETF, and it’s been a while; I’ve never been to an Atom meeting, myself. Check out the meeting and come if you want to contribute. Read on for a quick note on my position, and Sun’s, vis-a-vis Atom.
Sun, Atom, and Me · My position on all these issues hasn’t changed in a long time, and as far as I can tell, Sun pretty well agrees with me, so whereas I do not speak for Sun officially, I’ll say “we” and there’s a good chance I’m right this time.
We believe that a standardized syndication format and protocol (or “API”) is an important piece of the information business, going forward. We don’t particularly care what it’s called, and we think that what goes into it shouldn’t be very controversial given that there are millions of deployed implementations of the various flavors of RSS, and their content is more isomorphic than not.
We want the format and protocol to have clean, clear, specifications that are as complete as possible and are controlled by a neutral organization with a well-understood and very open change process. We want them entirely free of intellectual-property encumbrances, in particular patents.
We think that:
End-users ought to have a frictionless interface to syndication feeds, and that this should come for free with their computers.
End-users who want to write should be able to use desktop and mobile devices to post their writing, and should be able to post from any device to anywhere they have an account.
Information providers should have software that makes it easy to create and manage syndication feeds, and to inject content into them.
These posting and reading capabilities need to include reliable, modern security practices appropriate for Internet operations.
Developers in the Java ecosystem should have access to feeds and publishing services that’s as easy to use as ordinary files.
I’m quite sure we will be building software to address these visions. And it looks like whatever comes out of the Atom process is going to be the best basis for doing this.