MicrophonesIf you have been following the news from the world of web standards, linked data, and/or semantic web, you certainly have heard about schema.org. If you missed it, schema.org is a collaboration of Google, Yahoo! and Bing and is a way to include structured data in web pages. The vocabulary includes descriptive terms for content like movies, music, organizations, TV shows, products, locations, and more – there are over 100 terms. According to the Schema.org website, the goal is “to improve the display of search results, making it easier for people to find the right web pages.”

Announced just before The San Francisco Semantic Technology Conference, Schema.org was the most heated discussion topic the conference has seen in some time, and since then has been talked about extensively in news publications, podcasts, email discussion boards, and Q&A systems. (In case you missed all the hubub, following is a timeline of some of the early reactions.)

There is little doubt that schema.org will continue to be a topic of conversation for some time to come, but as we are now about one month in, we wanted to look in on the discussion and provide an aggregation of some of the many voices and opinions we have heard, including some very recent developments and newly available video of the Google Rich Snippets session from SemTech.

Be sure to see the bottom of this post for the latest!

Timeline

June 2 – schema.org is announced by Google, Yahoo, and Bing

June 2 – A public discussion forum is opened as a Google Group

June 2 – Mike Bergman – Structured Web Gets Massive Boost/

June 3schema.rdfs.org is announced. This was a quick response from the Linked Data community “to express the terms provided by the Schema.org consortium in RDF.” Of particular interest may be the various tools that are in development by community members.

June 3 – Manu Sporny – The False Choice of Schema.org

June 3 – David Wood – Schema.org and the Semantic Web

June 3 – Peter Mika – Welcome to schema.org

June 3 – Discussion begins at Answers.SemanticWeb.com

June 4 – Darin Stewart – Schema.org: Webmaster One-Stop or Linked Data Land Grab?

June 5 – Jonathan Goodman – What’s Wrong with the Semantic Web of Schema.org

June 5“The Semantic Link” Live from SemTech (Audio) with Paul Miller, Christine Connors, Ivan Herman, Bernadette Hyland, Andraz Tori, Eric Hoffer, Dave McComb, and Eric Franzon

June 6 – Benjamin Nowack – Schema.org – Threat or Opportunity?

June 7 – Richard MacManus – Is Schema.org Really a Google Land Grab?

June 8 – At SemTech, Ivan Herman moderated a Birds of a Feather discussion with a packed room of interested community members.

June 8 – Kavi Goel and Pravir Gupta of Google gave their perspective in a session on Google Rich Snippets and took audience questions:

June 10 – Jeni Tennison – Lessons for Microdata from schema.org

June 10 – Chris Mavergames – Schema.org, Drupal and linked data/web of data (RDFa) – Updated! Comments from Bing search lead and one of the founders of schema.org

June 10 – Tom Simonite – Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo Team Up to Advance Semantic Web

June 12 – Jeni Tennison – Schema.org and the Responsibility of Monopoly

June 13 – Henri Sivonen – Schema.org and Pre-Existing Communities

June 15 – Jeff Sayre – Subverting the Open Web: Schema.org’s Scheme to Control Structured Data

June 19 – Martin Fenner – Is Schema.org about a technical standard or about something else?

The Latest

June 24 -Stéphane Corlosquet – One of the biggest areas of concern about schema.org has been its impact on existing implementations and platforms that leverage RDFa or microformats (rather than the schema.org-preferred microdata).  Last year, Drupal 7 was deployed with native support for RDFa. Stéphane discussed this with us earlier this year.  In a recent post, Stéphane wrote about the impact of schema.org on Drupal.

June 25 – Manu Sporny – provides an extensive comparison of Microdata, Microformats, and RDFa.  A core discussion that erupted out of the schema.org announcement surrounded the benefits and costs of these various specifications for modeling semantic data in the Web. If you’re confused at all, this is an excellent point to start understanding the formats.

June 27 – Early development of a Joomla extension for schema.org is announced.

June 28 – Thomas Roessler, Technology and Society Domain Lead, World Wide Web Consortium, offered this statement to SemanticWeb.com, outlining the W3C approach:

  • W3C recognizes the value in having a shared vocabulary for search engine use.
  • W3C is interested in assisting the schema.org creators to develop broad community input into the vocabulary and markup formats of interest to search engines.
  • W3C recognizes that the requirements for structured data in Web pages support a broad range of applications including but not exclusively search engines and browsers.
  • W3C Acknowledges the public statement from the Technical Architecture Group recommending that a task force be formed “to provide input and focus to the HTML WG in aligning the [HTML microdata and HTML+RDFa 1.1] specifications.”
  • W3C will facilitate the discussion among the several communities of interest recognizing the significant implementation experience that exists across the communities.

Did We Miss Something?

These are some of the voices we have heard since the launch of Schema.org. This is not a comprehensive list. If you know of other posts we have missed, please add them to the comments.

Add Your Voice!

Additional research by Angela Guess