What is HTML5?

By Jay Yaskiw

You may have heard the term “HTML5″ mentioned once or twice and had no idea what people were talking about. However, you should know what this term means as it will be becoming more and more important in the coming years. Steve Jobs even recently said that HTML5 would replace Flash in the future! So what is HTML5? In order to understand this term, let’s take a moment and explore HTML.

The abbreviation “HTML” stands for HyperText Markup Language. It is the formatting language that enables what you see when you surf the web. HTML provides short codes called tags, which are then saved as files. Your browser reads these files along with the accompanying text to present you with what you see on a particular page.

There have been countless markup languages invented, but HTML is by far the most popular to date. HTML is responsible for images, tables and everything in between. If you are looking for a beginner’s tutorial to how to use HTML, you can find one at htmldog.com. (You may have already experimented with basic HTML and not even know it, if you ever created a MySpace page.)

As the internet evolves, HTML is constantly being revised and refined to provide people with a better experience. There is an organization called the W3C, which determines the direction that HTML should be taking in the future. The W3C is concerned with taking the web to the next level and they are the organization behind HTML5.

HTML5 is the next revision of HTML and it will be released in 2012. In 2008, the W3C published its first working draft of HTML5. Currently, we are on HTML 4.01.

The advent of HTML5 is a big deal, as it will provide a variety of upgrades, which will allow the web to function in an improved capacity.

One of the things that HTML5 will focus on improving is the compatibility needed between websites, mobile devices and 3rd party platforms. It is believer that HTML5 will make these connections work more smoothly. Also designers are planning that HTML5 will allow websites to load more quickly. Many people (including Steve Jobs) are currently advising that HTML5 will be replacing Flash in the coming years.

HTML5 will also encompass a wide variety of other changes. For example, it will allow visitors to edit websites that they are visiting. It will also assist with geolocation. The list of improvements that will come along with HTML5 is really quite vast.

So what does all this mean for you? If you are not a web designer, HTML5 likely won’t change your world in any major capacity. The good news is that the current websites that are designed in HTML will still be compatible. This means that in 2012 all of your old favorite websites will still be up and running.

Jay Yaskiw is the author of this article on HTML5. For more information about Jay Yaskiw go to Calgary Web Design. If you would like some information on interactive design JYD| Calgary Web Design.

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