HTML and CSS Reference
Table A.1. WHATWG and W3C compared
Mostly paid members with
Anyone can join the mailing list.
Editor is subject to strictures
of W3C's feedback and re-
Editor is “benevolent dictator.”
8 (derived from WHATWG's
Lots (e.g., CSS, DOM, SVG,
Rolling release, constantly updated.
The real-life interactions of thousands of smart people are, of course, more complex than
can be described in a simple table, especially when you remember that many of these
people are in both W3C and WHATWG. But this section has given you some useful con-
text if you ever have to dive into a debate on the WHATWG mailing list or the W3C bug
tracker over some detail of one of the specs when you're just trying to figure out which
browser is “doing the right thing.”
A.1.2. So ... what is HTML5 anyway?
We consider a technology an official part of HTML5 if it's part of the WHATWG Living
Standard or it's one of W3C's specifications derived from that standard. But many of
the technologies, such as CSS3, Geolocation, and the Storage APIs, that partake of the
buzzword HTML5 aren't part of this official definition. In the next section, you'll have a
quick review of the HTML5 technologies that are officially HTML5, and in the following
section, those that are not.
Does it really matter what is or isn't HTML5?
The short answer is no! When you're building web apps, you need to pick and choose
technologies in the modern web platform based not on which spec they appear in but on
whether they do something you need and they work in browsers. Although you may end up
in some heated social network debates, you'll receive no explicit punishment for claiming
things like Geolocation as a key part of your HTML5 app. As you'll see, even the authors