By David Peterson

Fast Publishing of RDFa with Dreamweaver

By David Peterson

One of the biggest hurdles in adopting any new technology is the availability of good tools to work with. RDFa has suffered from that for too long. So it was with much enthusiasm that I read this morning of the launch of an RDFa extension for Dreamweaver version 8 to CS4. This is great news as it hasn’t been the easiest to publish RDFa by hand. Having an extension available to such a popular developer program will definitely improve the situation.

Martin McEvoy has just released the RDFa Documents extension which will (soon) be available via Adobe Exchange once approved. For now you can grab it directly from Martin’s site: v0.1.

RDFa extension for Dreamweaver

A short feature list:

  • RDFa Documents contains a HTML TagLibrary with RDFa attributes and a XHTML+RDFa 1.0 Document Type Declaration
  • The extension makes RDFa available to any Layout or Template that supports HTML/XHTML
  • It is also possible to convert existing Documents to RDFa using the Dreamweaver conversion utility
  • The extension currently supports inserting RDFa at code level along with predictive text via a drop down

Here is a short step-by-step from Martin:

New File

The easiest way to get going with RDFa in Dreamweaver is to create a new document

  1. File => New
  2. The Page Types you can choose from are HTML, ASP, HTML Template, JSP or PHP
  3. Chose any layout, then from the Doc Type select, XHTML+RDFa 1.0
  4. You are done, carry on in design view but split your view so you can see both Code and Design view and inserting RDFa where necessary.
  5. Alternatively, you can convert your existing web pages by choosing File => Convert => XHTML+RDFa. This inserts the RDFa Document type declaration and converts (if not already) your document to XHTML.
  • I’ve just installed it and from a quick test, it doesn’t seem to be of much use to beginners (like me); when typing out element attributes, you get presented with a long list of possible matches, so you need to already know what the RDFa attributes are. And even then, you need to type out yourself what the values should be; DW doesn’t do it for you.

  • Martin did mention that this is early days. But based on feedback and demand he would speed up development on ver.2.

    Here is what he said:

    Again depending on demand the 0.2 version will have support for inserting RDFa in designer view via the Tag Chooser, also some tool bar items to insert sample RDFa blocks such as FOAF, DC, CC, vCard and vCal. Lastly via The Properties Bar, (when I work out how to achieve this).

    So sounds like he will be addressing the issue for newcomers to RDFa.

    He is welcoming any feedback positive or negative so visit the link just a few lines up to get his email address (don’t want to post it here for obvious reason…)

  • I hope someone does something similar for Aptana! Good modern IDE with RDFa support would be great :)

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