Blog Posts by Ben Ward

  • Report from Music Hack Day: Boston

    From the phenomenon of BarCamp culture and Yahoo's own Open Hack Days, hack events have spread through the worldwide tech community at fantastic pace, bringing together people with passion for building new toys, experiments and enhancements, embracing the data open on the web. Working alone or forming teams, people find software bugbears to fix or look for something altogether new and inspiring. One of the more recent and strongest developments in hack culture is the emergence of industry-specific events, such as last weekend's Boston Music Hack Day, the fourth Music Hack Day (and first in the U.S.).

    Given its specific subject matter, Music Hack had focus, expertise, and passion at an intensity you would not find otherwise. Organizers struck a good balance between hacking time and presentations. We ran workshops early, giving crash courses in the APIs and technologies of the event supporters, and the three panels brought together an awe-inspiring array of developers and

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  • Kelkoo goes microformatic

    Microformats are a big deal. Regular readers will have seen a lot about them on these pages before, and in the past eighteen months every other web development journal worth its salt will likely have mentioned how to mark up contacts and calendar events using the hcard and hcalendar patterns.

    However, microformats — the popular, reusable HTML patterns produced at microformats.org — step out beyond those initial use-cases. Formats for reviews (hreview), blogs, news and syndication (hatom) and curricula vitæ (hresume) are also spreading.

    Last month our teams at Kelkoo and Yahoo! Europe pushed out version 10 of Kelkoo. It brings with it the single largest deployment of the hListing draft so far.

    hListing is a new format to mark up classifieds, services and product listings. It is quite generic, and can be used to mark up physical products, flat shares, services, events, requests for help and all sorts; consider the breadth of listings on a site like Gumtree or Craigslist. For Kelkoo and

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