Back during the RSS wars, there was heated disagreement about the format for RSS - among the disagreements was whether RSS should be RDF-based or not. The history is sordid, but from the point of view of someone building a linked data hub like the TopBraid Suite, we could be agnostic about this. Sure, it was great that RSS 1.0 was formatted as good RDF, so that any RDF reader could read it. But the formats aren't that different - at the time, I found a rosetta stone (Yahoo! was publishing identical feeds in four formats; RSS 0.9x, 1.0, 2.0 and Atom), and gave it to one of my programmers, asking him to create an RSS importer for the TopBraid Suite that would turn all of them into the same triples. It took him less than a week to turn this out, then a bit longer to test it against lots of feeds. For years now, TopBraid Suite has been able to read feeds in all these formats.
When the recent announcement of schema.org and microdata came out, the obvious knee-jerk reaction was that the Big Three had rejected RFDa, and this was a knife-in-the-back to Semantic markup efforts. There are some good arguments out there that microdata could do with some adjustment, but again, from the viewpoint of a hub vendor, I figured we could afford to be agnostic. I said as much in response to questions during my OWLED keynote yesterday.
Since that time (i.e., in the past 24 hours), Holger has done the same thing for microdata that we did years ago for RSS - he's made TopBraid Composer into what he calls "a full-blown Microdata web site editor." So far, it hasn't been documented or even rolled out to the rest of us, but he does have a screenshot:
He might get around to blogging more details himself as they develop. Here's a bit of a preview of the functionality as he describes it:
"[it] will scan the Microdata triples from all HTML files inside of the same project or folder, including sub-folders. The triples can then be viewed in any of TopBraid's features, e.g. forms, graphs and SPARQL queries. The editing is done on the integrated Eclipse HTML editors, and changes are automatically applied to the RDF graph whenever an HTML file is saved."
This doesn't mean I'm ready to endorse microdata (as if anyone cares if I do or not), but we can read it and manage it as linked data anyway.