Internet Explorer Gets Some Oomph

Microformats are supported quite well in Firefox these days thanks to the Operator extension, but the 70-80% of web users still using Internet Explorer might have been wondering what all the fuss is about. Now, thanks to MIX Online, they finally have a chance to find out. Oomph: A Microformats Toolkit was released yesterday and can now be downloaded along with full source code.

There are various parts to the toolkit, some CSS stylesheets and authoring tools, but the main bit I'm interested in is the IE Add-in. The install is a standard MSI but, once installed, the Add-in is quite low profile - no toolbar or other buttons appear in the browser chrome. However, if you browse to a page with some Microformatted content, a little icon appears in the top left corner of the browser window.

Oomph discovers Microformats on the page

Clicking on the icon expands an overlay with an interface into the page's Microformats - it only appears to support hCalendar and hCard and you get a box for each even if there's only one type on the page. Microformats are displayed one at a time with some buttons to scroll through if there are more than one, then there's a toolbar beneath for exporting to Outlook, Yahoo! and others.

Oomph displays the Microformats found on the page

I did run into a few problems on some pages where the next and previous buttons didn't work (on this page, for example, the next and previous buttons transferred me to the blog engine skin folder) and also it seemed to be confused on my CV where I'd used the include pattern for my contact info (it's been a while since I updated it, so I'll have to check I'm doing it correctly before I investigate further). One really neat feature of Oomph is the maps interface, which you get by clicking the little globe symbol near the top left.

Map these Microformats!

As you can see above a map appears, this seems to be based on a search of the address information rather than geo but it worked pretty well for the example pages I tried. Overall, pretty good for a first release and a welcome addition to the range of user tools for Microformats.

A page with both hCalendar and hCard