HTML and CSS Reference
In-Depth Information
This code is ugly and ungainly. Worse than that is the fact that
the browser has to pass the video off to a third-party plugin;
hope that the user has the correct version of that plugin (or has
the rights to download and install it, or the knowledge of how
to); and then hope that the plugin is keyboard accessible—along
with all the other unknowns involved in handing the content to a
third-party application.
Plugins can also be a signifi cant cause of browser instability
and can create worry in less technical users when they are
prompted to download and install newer versions.
Whenever you include a plugin in your pages, you're reserving
a certain drawing area that the browser delegates to the plugin.
As far as the browser is concerned, the plugin's area remains a
black box—the browser does not process or interpret anything
that is happening there.
Normally, this is not a problem, but issues can arise when your
layout overlaps the plugin's drawing area. Imagine, for example,
a site that contains a movie but also has JavaScript or CSS-based
dropdown menus that need to unfold over the movie. By default,
the plugin's drawing area sits on top of the web page, meaning
that these menus will strangely appear behind the movie.
Problems and quirks can also arise if your page has dynamic
layout changes. If the dimensions of the plugin's drawing area
are resized, this can sometimes have unforeseen effects—a
movie playing in the plugin may not resize, but instead simply
be cropped or display extra white space. HTML5 provides a
standardised way to play video directly in the browser, with no
plugins required.
One of the major advantages of the HTML5 video element is
that, fi nally, video is a full-fl edged citizen on the Web. It's no lon-
ger shunted of to the hinterland of <object> or the non-validat-
ing <embed> element.
So now, <video> elements can be styled with CSS; they can be
resized on hover using CSS transitions, for example. They can
be tweaked and redisplayed onto <canvas> with JavaScript. Best
of all, the innate hackability that open web standards provide
is opened up. Previously, all your video data was locked away;
your bits were trapped in a box. With HTML5 multimedia, your
bits are free to be manipulated however you want.
NOTE <embed> is fi nally
standardised in HTML5; it
was never part of any previous
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