How do you future-proof contact information? It strikes me that, through the years, I migrate from one messaging platform to another, but I’m generally contacting the same people. My Mom is going to be my Mom no matter what email client I’m using. Probably true for my wife, too.
So, when I switch from Outlook to Outlook Express to Mozilla Mail to Thunderbird, I’m having to export and import all my contact information every time, hope I don’t lose anything in translation, and hope that it stays constant even when subject to the quirks and vagaries of each platform.
Should there be a XML schema for archiving contact information, so that it’s always the same? So I could just put people in this XML file, then import to various platforms as I switched (or, if they don’t support the schema, do an XSL transform to something they do support)? So this XML file would be the one, true source for information about the people I know.
(Even taking out the XML angle, is it worthwhile to abstract your contact information away from a particular client? Regardless of what you store it in, is it just good practice to keep it in a vendor-neutral, highly-exportable format rather than a proprietary app?)
It concerns me that, as I wander through various software, I don’t have a “home base” for all my contact information; a format that my mother’s contact information can live in from here to eternity. Is this the point where the mother of invention requires that I invent the schema?