Saying stuff about stuff.

What is oEmbed and why is it useful?

From the oEmbed site [1]:

oEmbed is a format for allowing an embedded representation of a URL on third party sites.

Cool… what?

For example Vimeo will return the HTML required to embed one of its videos - oEmbed is particularly useful for videos [2].

http://vimeo.com/api/oembed.xml?url=http://www.vimeo.com/935317

  video
  1.0
  Vimeo
  http://vimeo.com/
  Weird Fishes: Arpeggi
  flight404
  http://vimeo.com/flight404
  1
  <object type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="504" height="348" data="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=935317&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;fullscreen=1&amp;show_title=1&amp;show_byline=1&amp;show_portrait=1&amp;color=00ADEF">
  <param name="quality" value="best" />
  <param name="allowfullscreen" value="true" />
  <param name="scale" value="showAll" />
  <param name="movie" value="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=935317&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;fullscreen=1&amp;show_title=1&amp;show_byline=1&amp;show_portrait=1&amp;color=00ADEF" />
</object>
  504
  348
  318
  http://20.media.vimeo.com/d1/5/57/04/55/thumbnail-57045532.jpg
  160
  120
  935317

Hidden away amongst the cruft you can see that the html element contains their movie player embed code.

Why?

Think bookmarks, tumbles and other such delights. It’s like a rich meta description - though that sounds awfully close to being a cringe-worthy marketing buzzword creating developer cynicism.

Resources

                         __                 __
                        /\ \               /\ \
  ___      __    ___ ___\ \ \____     __   \_\ \
 / __`\  /'__`\/' __` __`\ \ '__`\  /'__`\ /'_` \
/\ \L\ \/\  __//\ \/\ \/\ \ \ \L\ \/\  __//\ \L\ \
\ \____/\ \____\ \_\ \_\ \_\ \_,__/\ \____\ \___,_\
 \/___/  \/____/\/_/\/_/\/_/\/___/  \/____/\/__,_ /

 ===== because 'open embed' sounds too dirty =====

[1] Gotta love their ASCII art:

[2] One could argue that embedding videos is all it’s really useful for at the moment as it seems to be most popular among video services (not YouTube!) but that’s a discussion for another day.

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