HTML4 and XHTML1 have served us well for years. But like anything man-made, these technologies also have their weaknesses. However, it is now hoped that HTML5 will resolve many of these.
Some of us may still remember the flashy, colorful sites of the good old nineties. Incredibly, some of these sites have survived, with their frames (which infuriate all users and programmers) and their inability to adapt to different screen sizes. Flash intros were the next big thing – for a long time, ‘Skip Intro’ was the most clicked term on the web. But these are also a dying breed, especially since Apple decided its iOS would limit Flash technology or not support it at all. Right, so we know these issues can now be resolved easily with HTML5. But there are a few more things to consider.
Responsiveness: a major concern
From a 27-inch monitor in the office to a little smartphone screen – to display sites attractively on all possible devices, new specifications are essential. Developers have been working toward this for years and, in the form of HTML5, look to have found a long-term solution. It will allow more people to access web content from any device.
XHTML2 or HTML5?
Two versions were in the race to succeed the old version of HTML: XHTML2.0 and X/HTML5. The problem with XHTML2 is that it was defined according to how developers envisioned markup language should be – not in line with how markup languages are now used in reality. This means that the programming in XHTML2 must be absolutely clean – meticulous attention to detail is key. In contrast, HTML5 is just a small step forward – but an efficient one. In principle, it sways within the borders of HTML4 and XHTML1 but provides good solutions to the various problems of markup languages. It is heavily based on current web browser technologies without deviating from how markup languages were used until now. This brings several advantages: more precise semantics, new ways to communicate with the server (connectivity), the ability to store data locally on the client side, better efficiency when working offline, easier integration of multimedia content, and new and creative graphics and effects, which opens up new ways to create more sophisticated designs.
What’s new in HTML5?
Advantages of HTML5
More information about HTML5 can be found at www.w3.org or