Through Fathom framework, Mozilla is trying to make browsers more intelligent. Its future implementations could be in more browsers, browser extensions, and server-side software. The framework will help browser to understand the meaningful parts of the web page like previous/next buttons, address forms, and the main textual content.
Erik Rose gave the look of how Firefox could understand web pages in the same way as a human. The browser can identify a login link and provide hotkeys to dismiss popovers. Hiding the superfluous navigation or header sections on small screens or windows, stylesheets are not required for printing.
Erik also says, “Over the decades, there have been many attempts to make this easier. But microformats, semantic tags, RDF, and link/rel header elements have failed to take over the world, due both to sites’ incentive to remain unscrapable and to the extra work they represent."
Fathom is inspired from data flow languages like Prolog. DOM nodes are scored and extracted on the conditions specified by the user. Its system is based on types and annotations. It expresses dependencies between scoring steps and controls state. The existing set of scoring rules can be extended without editing them directly, encouraging multiple third party refinements to be mixed together.