The thing that I’ve not seen any one, on either side of the .RSS/Echo issue mention is that whatever flaws .RSS may (or may not) have, it’s understandable by ordinary mortals, even Medievalists. Looking at the specs, especially the sample files, and a few people’s feeds, was enough for me to kind of figure out how it worked, and even create a feed by hand. SOAP as far as I’m concerned, is not humanly parseable. Looking at a SOAP file doesn’t really tell me anything.
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