Hi Micah,

Thank you for sharing your thoughts on microdata in Episode 7 of Design Vs Dev.

I have a few theories as to why we need to use microdata. In a nutshell, Microdata encourages Google’s vision of searching for information. For example, if every food recipe website has microdata defined content, then Google can easily help a user search for requested information.

Also, Google currently supports a few microdata types (less than 10 at the time of this writing). In Google’s defense, it makes sense for everyone to adopt microdata in bite size pieces vs. a dumping of a complete new scheme.

Microdata is a stepping stone in making the web replace traditional operating systems (theory #1).
Extreme example: The 9/11 Commission Report states that we should prepare our game to counter any future attacks. Think about how useful the web can be as our main desktop (our files and information living in the cloud). If terrorists at all use technology to communicate (talking over the phone [voice recognition transcribes] or e-mail messaging), then the microdata in a web chatting app can make it easier for Skynet to search through microdata tagged communications between drug cartels or whatever other evil.

Microdata can encourage the production of useful and unique information (theory #2), ultimately google can be one front face of the entire internet without people having to visit individual websites (think how Google can be the next social platform).

We’re all very social animals.
We make technology work for us.
Collective intelligence (why have multiple recipe websites or multiple websites for quotes? repetitive vs. unique and innovative knowledge for everybody)
Knowledge is power.
Marcel Masse’s quote is a fact:

The more the world is specialized the more it will be run by generalists.