Tuesday, 13 March 2012

HTML 5, The Next Generation Web Technology

HTML5 is the next generation of HTML.  It includes the fifth revision of HTML, CSS 3 and a series of Javascript APIs.  The major browsers support many of the elements and APIs of HTML 5. 
HTML5 helps developers to create apps and websites with the functionality, speed, performance etc. of a desktop application.   But for a web application there is broader audience and wider array of devices. 

Some rules for HTML5 set by W3c and WHATWG are:
  • New features should be based on HTML, CSS, DOM and Javascript.
  • Reduce the need of external plugins like Flash.
  • Replace scripting by using more markups.
  • Should be device independent.
HTML 5 has only one <doctype> declaration which is <!DOCTYPE html>.  Some of the new features include <canvas> element for 2D drawing, <video> and <audio> elements for media playback, local storage support etc.  Some new content-specific elements are also introduced in HTML5 such as <article> , <footer>, <header>, <nav>, <section> etc.  New form controls like calender, date, time, search, email, url etc. are also introduced.

Before HTML 5  we used <div> tags for any kind of structuring the web pages.  But HTML 5 provides a wide range of tags for structuring the web pages.
HTML 5 includes API for GeoLocation.  This is a very useful functionality to find out the geographical location through a device's user agent like mobile devices.  Now it is very easy to embedding media to web pages.  The video and audio tags are really some cool stuffs in HTML 5.

<video width="600" height="500" src="somevideo.mp4"/>

The form is also upgraded in HTML 5.  See some iput types newly includes in HTML 5.

  • <input type="number">
  • <input type="email">
  • <input type="search">
  • <input type="date">
  • and more...
For an extent  some form validations are also possible in HTML 5.  We can specify the minimum value for an input field just by setting the "min" attribute(eg: min="1").

Mobile development became a revolution by the introduction of HTML5. 

See the anatomy of a HTML 5 mobile app. 

The key features of HTML5 for mobile devices includes:
  • Offline Support.
  • Canvas Drawing.
  • Video and Audio Streaming support.
  • GeoLocation API.
  • Advanced Forms.
Using HTML 5, developers can create modern applications with great user experience which can smoothly cross the platforms.  Since the technology giants such as Apple, Google etc are promoting, HTML 5 mobile development is quickly changing the face of the mobile-market.  All major browsers like Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Internet Explorer continue to add more features of HTML5 in their new versions.

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