HTML and CSS Reference
old HTML that didn't meet the rules enforced by XHTML. Neither web-page developers nor browser
companies stopped their support for traditional HTML markup in favor of the new XHTML standards. As a
result, web pages became a mix of old HTML and XHTML. There were efforts to evolve XHTML further, but
the browser and developer community simply refused to give up support for plain old HTML markup. The
XHTML rules, although good from a theoretical point of view, weren't compelling enough to make the web
community abandon support for traditional HTML.
In 2004, a group of people, mostly from browser manufacturing companies (such as Apple, Mozilla,
and Opera), formed the Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group (WHATWG). The newly
formed group began looking at HTML from a different perspective. Instead of talking in terms of rules,
standards, and strictness, they brainstormed about features that, if added to HTML, would add value for
web designers and developers. Traditional HTML (official version 4.01) coupled with these additional
features became HTML5. This initiative got support from the community, developed momentum, and was
taken over by W3C for standardization in 2007. In January 2008, W3C published a working draft of HTML5.
In addition, XHTML5 (a set of standards for HTML5 documents) was introduced; it's essentially an update
to XHTML and is being defined alongside the HTML5 specifications.
The past showed that it's impossible to abandon HTML and replace it with something else. So, HTML
is considered a current standard: although it's called HTML5 to refer to its new capabilities, from the
browser and specifications point of view it's just HTML. The next section makes this clear when you learn
the basic layout of an HTML5 page.
n Note Although XHTML could never replace HTML, it had a positive impact on web developers and designers.
Due to XHTML's strict rules, web page developers and designers became more conscious of improving the structure
of their web pages. The web-design tools also improved by highlighting markup-level errors caused by improper
nesting and missing end tags.
HTML5 Page Structure
Now that you know the brief history of HTML5, let's see a simple HTML5 web page in action. Open any text
editor, such as Windows Notepad, TextPad, or Visual Studio's default text editor, and key in the markup
shown in Listing 1-1.
Listing 1-1. A Simple HTML5 Page
<title>Welcome to HTML5</title>
Save the file as Hello.htm , and double-click it to open in your default browser. Figure 1-1 shows a
sample run of Hello.htm in Internet Explorer 9 (IE9).