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RDFa and Drupal

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More exciting to me is how search engines can help bootstrap the semantic web as they build out these vertical search engines, and the role that content management systems like Drupal get to play in this. Hundreds of thousands of Drupal sites contain vast amounts of structured data, covering an enormous range of topics. Unfortunately, that structure is hidden deep in Drupal's database and doesn't surface to the HTML code generated by Drupal.

In my DrupalCon Boston keynote presentation last year, I laid down the challenge that we need to put fields in core and make them first class citizens. Once fields are thus empowered, they can be associated with rich, semantic meta-data that Drupal could output in its XHTML as RDFa. For example, say we have an HTML textfield that captures a number, and that we assign it an RDF property of 'price'. Semantic search engines then recognize it as a 'price' field. Add fields for 'shipping cost', 'weight', 'color' (and/or any number of others) and the possibilities become very exciting. I envisioned a Drupal core CCK with the power to do just that.

Read the whole article here at Acquia.

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