I want RSS to disappear. The question was posed, “What do users want from RSS”? I thought long and hard about this and here’s where I come out.
Speaking strictly as a user, what I care about are RSS applications. I care about reading, scanning, writing, absorbing, learning from, contributing, and sharing. So what I want from RSS is to disappear into the plumbing, and in every way possible enable and encourage great applications to be designed and built.
All kinds of wonderful new stuff that is yet to be invented. Authoring tools, reading tools, syndication applications, content applications, distribution servers, mass political blogging platforms, search engines and indexes, rating systems, and zagat’s guides, catalogs and taxonomies, categorizations schemes and services, content crawling services – summarizers – delegators, translators, linkers, transmitters and receivers. This is still just the beginning, in my opinion.
So while I could list (and I will) a set of more prosaic wishes for the protocols and technologies which will enable these wonderful applications, I think at the core, I wish that the users never had the need to know the word Are-Ess-Ess.
By the way, lest anyone misunderstand. I think RSS has been and is an absolutely seminal invention and has enabled and will continue to enable a whole new class of communication with an impact that we can still not fully measure. It’s just that, like TCP/IP and SS7 and Jet Engines and GPS Satelites, the people who use it don’t want to know that it even exists.)
(More prosaic list follows: I wish trackback worked reliably; I wish permalinks always worked; I wish that when I moved my blog from one home to another, all my hard won traffic didn’t get lost because no-one knew where I had gone; I wish I could use a richer editor to create my posts; I wish… I wish …; I wish)