What the heck is HTML 5?


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A five minute introduction to HTML 5, given at Oxford Geek Night 2 back in April.

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What the heck is HTML 5?

  1. 1. What the heck is HTML 5? Simon Willison Oxford Geek Night 11th April 2007 http://simonwillison.net/
  2. 2. What happened to HTML? • 1997: HTML 4 • 1999: HTML 4.01 • 2000: XHTML 1.0 • 2002: XHTML 1.0, second edition • XHTML 1.1 and XHTML 2.0 - which break backwards compatibility with existing sites and browsers!
  3. 3. XHTML adoption... • ... has been slow • The vast majority of XHTML sites are invalid • They only work because browsers treat them as regular HTML instead • XHTML 1.1 and 2.0 break backwards compatibility! Adoption is almost non- existent
  4. 4. XHTML is not going to replace HTML as the web’s official markup language because it turns out that resilience is more useful than brittleness. - Douglas Crockford
  5. 5. Meanwhile... • The bubble bulged • The bubble burst • Internet Explorer stagnated • Firefox happened • Ajax happened • <canvas> happened • Dare I say it... Web 2.0?
  6. 6. The Web was evolving despite the W3C, not because of it
  7. 7. The WHATWG
  8. 8. ( ) Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group
  9. 9. Håkon Wium Lie Brendan Eich David Baron Maciej Stachowiak Johnny Stenback David Hyatt Ian Hickson
  10. 10. Web Forms 2.0 An incremental improvement of HTML 4.01's forms. Web Applications 1.0 Features for Application Development in HTML
  11. 11. HTML 5 is just a nickname
  12. 12. Specifying real-world HTML
  13. 13. Error handling • The hardest thing about implementing a browser is dealing with bad HTML... • ... because you have to reverse engineer and copy the error routines from the other major browsers • (and Internet Explorer is closed source)
  14. 14. Some things are clearer with hindsight of several years. It is necessary to evolve HTML incrementally. The attempt to get the world to switch to XML, including quotes around attribute values and slashes in empty tags and namespaces all at once didn't work. - Tim Berners-Lee
  15. 15. The W3C restarted the HTML Working Group
  16. 16. This group will maintain and produce incremental revisions to the HTML specification, which includes the series of specifications previously published as XHTML version 1. Both XML and 'classic HTML' syntaxes will be produced.
  17. 17. Chris Wilson on board as a co-chair
  18. 18. WHATWG have offered to donate their past three years of work
  19. 19. HTML lives!
  20. 20. www.whatwg.org www.w3.org/html/wg/ simonwillison.net/talks/