Suppose you think of your data as a list of, well, anything: stock prices or workflow steps or cake ingredients or sports statistics. Atom might be for you. Suppose the things in the list ought to have human-readable labels and have to carry a timestamp and might be re-aggregated into other lists. Atom is almost certainly what you need. And for a data format that didn’t exist a year ago, there’s a whole great big butt-load of software that understands it.
Read the rest in Don’t Invent XML Languages