Featured paper: What Powers Web2.0 Mashups

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(In the weeks leading up to the XML 2006 conference in Boston (5-7 December), I’ll be featuring some of our presentations here on my weblog from our four specialized tracks. Here’s the first one.)

Title: What Powers Web2.0 Mashups
Track: XML on the Web
Author: Dan Theurer, Technical Evangelist, Yahoo!
Summary: Web2.0 applications, such as Flickr, del.icio.us and Upcoming.org expose APIs that return XML as the default format. This presentation takes a closer look at roadblocks, alternatives and toolkits to build your own custom mashups.

Dan’s presentation promises a practical, hands-on approach to using XML for web mashups — he’s not coming to philosophize — but it reminds me that two of XML’s biggest successes were unexpected: Web mashups and weblogs. The careful work on the original XML specifications laid a solid foundation, but it’s the raw energy and enthusiasm of these bottom-up initiatives (sometimes supported sometimes by big companies, but driven by thousands of individual developers) that make XML matter, 10 years after the W3C released the first working draft at our conference in Boston in 1996.

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