This is not a review of Microformats Made Simple

I’m not going to review Microformats Made Simple here because the author is a friend, I’m mentioned in a few places in the book, and I could not write an unbiased review. Add to that the fact that I think the author is awesomeness electrified, one of the women in tech to keep an eye on, a brilliant front end developer, and my bias shows in an even brighter shade of sunshine.

But I do want to talk about the book. So, accept that I’m biased. My remarks are not presented in a review wrapped up in my normal hReview microformat; there are no affiliate links to the book on Amazon; there is no cover photo. I’m just talking here.

Microformats Made Simple (New Riders, 2009) is by Emily Lewis. The book is exactly what its title says, a source of information and code that make using microformats dead simple to use and easy to understand—all wrapped up in the logic of semantic HTML and web standards.

If you care at all about semantic HTML, SEO, accessible data, reusable content, or web design you need to read this book. I think you do care about those things. I suggest you read the book sitting by your computer, because you are going to want to implement microformats as you read through the chapters. It’s so easy and the benefits are so clear, you can’t read the book and not want to use the information. In many cases you can add microformat data instantly as you see the code examples provided and apply the concepts to your own sites.

When New Riders contacted Emily about writing a book, she indicated that she wanted to use her natural language. She didn’t want to write like a technical writer. I think she set a new standard for an accessible, personal writing style and tone in a technical book. Examples in evidence:

Can I get a “Hell, yeah!” for meaning and semantics?

I’d call it crap, but I’m trying to be dignified here.

So now you know your first compound microformat. Proud? I am. You are already becoming my favorite person.

If you are teaching HTML or any beginning level web development class, you could add microformats to your course with almost no effort by adding various microformats at appropriate moments as students learn new material. This book would guide you in that effort.

My biased opinion is that this is a terrific book.

A Garden Full of Women in Tech

The list-making has begun. No, not Christmas wish lists—those end of year lists of the top, best, or most important. In recent days there have been three new lists of notable women in tech.

Read the full post at BlogHer.

Related Posts: Maria Webster, Addison Berry, Shelley Powers, Elaine Montoya and Becky Padilla, My Web Design Author’s Dream Team.

Women in Tech: Shelley Powers

This is the first of several interviews with women in technology. Today you’ll learn about Shelley Powers. Shelley is perhaps best known as a writer. Her most recent books are Learning JavaScript and Painting the Web. She’s also a programmer and web developer, and she applies a powerful and logical mind to everything she does.

Q: I looked you up on Amazon and found a list of books you’ve written that includes Learning JavaScript, Painting the Web, Adding Ajax, Learning JavaScript: Add Sparkle and Life to Your Web Pages, Unix Power Tools, Practical RDF, Powerbuilder 5 How-To, Developing Asp Components, Dynamic HTML, Dynamic Web Publishing Unleashed, Javascript How-To: The Definitive Javascript Problem-Solver, and Using Perl For Web Programming.


How did you get started on a career as a writer? What was your education and background?

A: I’m a late bloomer educationally. I quit high school when I was 15 and joined a religious cult, Children of God. When I came to my senses and left the group, I went from the frying pan to the fire by marrying, at 16, a man who had learning disabilities and resented the fact that I liked to read. We lived in a house in the country and if it weren’t for the fact that the local library would send books out, and allow you to return them in pre-paid envelopes, I would have had very little to read for two years.

. . . Read the full post at BlogHer.