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Meta Information

Before we can talk too much about what meta information provides for us, it's essential that you fully understand what metadata, as it has pertained to Web documents, actually is. The most simplistic definition of metadata is "data about data." Practically, that means descriptive information about a document or collection of data such as a database or other concentrated store of data. In XHTML, the meta element provides document authors with an opportunity to include this descriptive information.

What Current Techniques Tell Us

The intent of the XHTML meta element is to provide servers and clients a means of retrieving information about the document being served to index it, as in the case of search engines, and identify it or catalog it for other applications.


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