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  1. #1
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    HTML 5 Differences from HTML 4


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    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Now that is a useful article, it is nice to see the W3C trying to help simplify things!

    PS: I know this is probably silly but I worry about the doctype not needing to reference a DTD. If HTML5 only requires a doctype to render in standards mode and has no other purpose (for that language), I guess if you wanted to use a custom DTD, it no longer qualifies as HTML (5 at least) with extensions?

    Rant time:
    Why have they allowed the use of color inside input's, surely that violates the intent to seperate style and structure.
    And I guess iframes are no longer depreciated as they are now being used to "sandbox" content, which in all fairness I can see some benefits.
    And why they removed acronym I do not understand, an acronym and an abbreviation are completely different, of course using abbr will reduce the confusion but surely for the benefit of semantic correctness they should rename the abbr to something like <sh> (short hand).
    Also: removing profile in the head? well that is going to do some damage to microformats which make use of the profile element such as XFN.
    And the removal of accesskeys when usability studies show they do have a beneficial role? Talk about removing useful functionality.

    There is clearly a lot of work to be done before this should be allowed to be made final.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    I know this is probably silly but I worry about the doctype not needing to reference a DTD.
    HTML5 is not an application of SGML, unlike HTML 2.0 through 4.01. It just looks vaguely similar.
    Birnam wood is come to Dunsinane

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    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy C. Ankerstjerne's Avatar
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    I see that the HTML 5 draft still has a series of extremely critical errors:
    • Numbers must use a decimal point, ignoring the use of the decimal comma. Since most countries use the decimal comma, it is not possible to write documents in most languages using HTML 5.
    • Dates must tentatively follow the ISO 8601-format, which does not allow for dates prior to year 1 or after year 9999 without prior agreement between the parties reading the document. Therefore, it is impossible to write documents about Julius Cesar, Moses or dinosaurs using HTML 5, unless the articles are accessed through a form requiring such agreement. Forthermore, the HTML 5 representation of ISO 8601 is broken, as the hyphens in ISO 8601-compliant dates must be non-breaking.
    • It is still not possible to transscribe certain physical documents in HTML 5, as tt, strike, u and other such elements with presentational-semantic meaning are removed. It was possible to use these elements with HTML 4.01 Transitional (as they were only deprecated) or HTML 3.2, but as of HTML 5, these elements are dropped.


    Until HTML 5 re-consider these decisions, HTML 5 is a joke.
    Christian Ankerstjerne
    <p<strong<abbr/HTML/ 4 teh win</>
    <>In Soviet Russia, website codes you!

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    Theoretical Physics Student bronze trophy Jake Arkinstall's Avatar
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    I don't agree with your last point - again, underlining is just a presentational thing.

    But what I don't agree with it the dialog tag. Looks like tables all over again. Rather than:
    Code html:
    <dialog>
     <dt> Costello
     <dd> Look, you gotta first baseman?
     <dt> Abbott
     <dd> Certainly.
     <dt> Costello
     <dd> Who's playing first?
     <dt> Abbott
     <dd> That's right.
     <dt> Costello
     <dd> When you pay off the first baseman every month, who gets the money?
     <dt> Abbott
     <dd> Every dollar of it. 
    </dialog>
    Code html:
    <dialog>
        <message from="Costello">Look, you gotta first baseman?</message>
        <message from="Abbott">Certainly.</message>
        <message from="Costello">Who's playing first?</message>
        <message from="Abbott">That's right.</message>
        <message from="Costello">When you pay off the first baseman every month, who gets the money?</message>
        <message from="Abbott">Every dollar of it.</message>
    </dialog>
    Jake Arkinstall
    "Sometimes you don't need to reinvent the wheel;
    Sometimes its enough to make that wheel more rounded"-Molona

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    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy C. Ankerstjerne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arkinstall View Post
    I don't agree with your last point - again, underlining is just a presentational thing.
    No it isn't. If I need to transscribe a historical document, then every part of that document has to by transscribed as close to the original as possible. If a part of the original document is underlined, then that is an important part of the semantics of the transscribed document, not the presentation.

    But what I don't agree with it the dialog tag. Looks like tables all over again. Rather than:
    Your suggesting (using attributes to mark up dialog) makes no sense, in that it won't be possible to see who'd saying what. All you'll be able to see is the dialog itself. Also, I don't see what it has to do with tables, as it is clearly intended to be displayed like a definition list by default.
    Christian Ankerstjerne
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    om nom nom nom Stomme poes's Avatar
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    I think I understand the tables comment: some people have noticed lists popping up everywhere and someone said, are lists the new tables? Using them just because they work when really we could shoehorn any content into any element and style it however we want.

    Numbers must use a decimal point, ignoring the use of the decimal comma. Since most countries use the decimal comma, it is not possible to write documents in most languages using HTML 5.
    Another reason added to my list. I needs teh commaz. There's a pretty big difference in a car premium being €346,00 and €346.00!!!

    I don't agree with your last point - again, underlining is just a presentational thing.
    You're missing typography and the fact that the "Web Writing" hasn't been able to eradicate it. You cannot write for some scientific paper and get away with saying "Homo sapiens has opposable thumbs." heck, even Natl Geo will laugh you out and tell you "get thee an editor".

    You need to say "Homo sapiens has opposable thumbs." It's just typography, that species names are italicised, not emphasis... that's just one example. I remember being taught in school that my bibliography needed to underline titles. I can't do that anymore now that <u> is deprecated... and CSS is not to the rescue, because the typograhpy is part of the content, not the presentation (no, I'm not fully sure WHY that is... )

    I have noticed the working groups on HTML5 seem to want to leave out accessibility stuff, but after everyone complains loudly enough, they add them back in. Remember when they left the headers table attribute out, saying "nobody needs them, there's no such thing as irregular tables, and web authors don't use it correctly anyway, and the software out there doesn't use it right anyway"? Everyone got pretty hot about that one, and one day, there it was, in the specs. So, I'm pretty sure someone will get access keys (or some good replacement) in there eventually.

  8. #8
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    HTML5 is not an application of SGML, unlike HTML 2.0 through 4.01. It just looks vaguely similar.
    That is a really good reason why HTML5 will never amount to anything. All the professionals will stick to a professional SGML markup language.

    Anyway iframe etc were deprecated for a reason and that reason hasn't changed so bringing back unnecessary tags will just make for a bigger mess in people's markup.
    Stephen J Chapman

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    Quote Originally Posted by felgall View Post
    That is a really good reason why HTML5 will never amount to anything. All the professionals will stick to a professional SGML markup language.
    That'll be you and me and … anyone else?

    The rest will be tremendously exalted and rejoice because they can now write <nav> instead of <ul id="nav">, which will obviously save mankind. And they'll get away with <a><h2>Clickable</h2></a>. The fact that <p> can now denote 'a part of a form' or 'an address' won't be allowed to spoil the party.
    Birnam wood is come to Dunsinane

  10. #10
    Theoretical Physics Student bronze trophy Jake Arkinstall's Avatar
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    To be honest, I don't like this spec one bit.

    I agree with the underlining thing, now I can see what you mean and why it's important.

    The dialog tag... there's no real reason for it. How often do you use dialog in a site?! And the suggested syntax is terrible. The least they can do is have a link between dialog and name, so maybe:
    Code html:
    <dialog>
        <message>
            <from>Robert</from>
            <body>Hey Dave</from>
        </message>
        <message>
            <from>David</from>
            <body>Hey Bob</from>
        </message>
    </dialog>

    But I cant see much use for dialog in the real web world.


    Datagrid element!? So that means table is deprecated, right? Oh, no.

    IFrame is deprecated and yet they're adding features.

    And what happened to href being applied to any element?


    This specification is a mess.
    Jake Arkinstall
    "Sometimes you don't need to reinvent the wheel;
    Sometimes its enough to make that wheel more rounded"-Molona

  11. #11
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy C. Ankerstjerne's Avatar
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    Stommes
    Another good example of semantic application of the so-called purely presentational elements. Yet another one would be the title of a cited reference, which according to ISO 690 should be italic. By writing <cite>Author. <i>Title</i>. Place : Publisher, year. Pp., the title can be easily extracted.

    arkinstall
    That would be a better approach. I don't particularly dislike the current suggestion, though. The HTML 4.01 definition list was both implicitly and explicitly designed for dialog, and while it may not make much sense to define it as a list, it was by far the best of the existing elements.

    And yes, datagrid doesn't make any sense. It's called a table. Datagrid seems to be some word they've invented, because about half of all coders equal tables to layout, and about half equal tables to evil. This is akin to re-naming knifes to zaszorfs, to prevent assailants from using knifes in assaults.
    Christian Ankerstjerne
    <p<strong<abbr/HTML/ 4 teh win</>
    <>In Soviet Russia, website codes you!

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    A nice article but i would say that there is an error in HTML 5 that the numbers must use a decimal point, ignoring the use of the decimal comma. Since most countries use the decimal comma, it is not possible to write documents in most languages using HTML 5.

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    om nom nom nom Stomme poes's Avatar
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    Now, I wouldn't say Most Countries use the decimal comma... not only the new world uses a decimal point, but I thought also the Asian countries (possibly excepting Japan, not sure if they got that much influence, and Hong-Kong/Macau might). I also thought Oz/nz used decimal points?

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    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    That'll be you and me and … anyone else?
    I sure as heckfire will not be recommending HTML5 anytime soon, the benefits of the new version are questionable in many respects and in my eyes, once XHTML is compatible in all browsers there will be no reason why anyone would want to drop back to a non SGML language when all the extensibility you could require can be provided through XHTML. Currently, there are quite a few things I am not really that happy about in terms of where they are trying to take the language.

  15. #15
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy C. Ankerstjerne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stomme poes View Post
    Now, I wouldn't say Most Countries use the decimal comma... not only the new world uses a decimal point, but I thought also the Asian countries (possibly excepting Japan, not sure if they got that much influence, and Hong-Kong/Macau might). I also thought Oz/nz used decimal points?
    According to Wikipedia, the decimal comma is the most common (the list is longer, at least - we can then begin to look into the number of people with internet access which use either version, but I'll leave that up to someone else ): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decimal..._decimal_point
    Christian Ankerstjerne
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    <>In Soviet Russia, website codes you!

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    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy
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    Interesting read if you haven't already seen:
    http://xhtml.com/en/future/x-html-5-versus-xhtml-2/

  17. #17
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Wow, No I had not seen that before, compared to the mess that is HTML5, XHTML2 actually has some extremly beneficial and very worthwhile changes, all credit for this fantastic upgrade for when it sppears (and is supported of course).

  18. #18
    Mazel tov! bronze trophy kohoutek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    That'll be you and me and anyone else?
    Yes, me. I'm having a hard enough time explaining to some clients who know a thing or two about the web that XHTML is not used on the web. If we have another incompatible markup language to choose from (I know that we currently only have one), everyone will want that because they heard it's the latest and greatest just like with XHTML. It'll be an infinite loop.
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    Wow, No I had not seen that before, compared to the mess that is HTML5, XHTML2 actually has some extremly beneficial and very worthwhile changes, all credit for this fantastic upgrade for when it sppears (and is supported of course).
    Yeah XHTML 2 is quite nice. Have you looked into how HTML 5 will effect Microformats?

    http://microformats.org/wiki/html5

    Edit... You stated one earlier on in this thread...

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    IMO, the deprecation of <u> is a smart move that relates to the majority of sites. No one should be using underlines on a webpage, as they're equivalent visually to a link. I sympathize with your attempt to transcribe documents faithfully, but I can safely assume you're in a tiny minority when it comes to using the web for that purpose.

    Hands up: who tried to click on one of those?

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    Rant time:
    Why have they allowed the use of color inside input's, surely that violates the intent to seperate style and structure.
    How so? Let's say you want to choose the color of your car. You can enter your color of choise in a text field using #RRGGBB syntax. Or you can use the <input type="color"> color picker which sends the color using #RRGGBB syntax to the server. Doesn't have anything to do with style, does it?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    And I guess iframes are no longer depreciated as they are now being used to "sandbox" content, which in all fairness I can see some benefits.
    iframe was not deprecated (nor depreciated) in HTML5 before the sandbox features were proposed.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    And why they removed acronym I do not understand, an acronym and an abbreviation are completely different, of course using abbr will reduce the confusion but surely for the benefit of semantic correctness they should rename the abbr to something like <sh> (short hand).
    Reducing confusion is the reason. Renaming it seems pointless.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    Also: removing profile in the head? well that is going to do some damage to microformats which make use of the profile element such as XFN.
    Microformats don't actually make use of the profile attribute. Implementations ignore the profile, some microformats don't even have a profile and people often don't specify a profile.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    And the removal of accesskeys when usability studies show they do have a beneficial role?
    Usability studies have also shown that they have a harmful role.

    Accesskeys have not yet received proper research and consideration, which is why they are not in the spec.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    There is clearly a lot of work to be done before this should be allowed to be made final.
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    I see that the HTML 5 draft still has a series of extremely critical errors:
    • Numbers must use a decimal point, ignoring the use of the decimal comma. Since most countries use the decimal comma, it is not possible to write documents in most languages using HTML 5.
    Sure you can. In the case of e.g. <progress>, just use the value attribute:
    Code:
    <progress value="0.5">0,5</progress>
    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    Dates must tentatively follow the ISO 8601-format, which does not allow for dates prior to year 1 or after year 9999 without prior agreement between the parties reading the document.
    Dates for the <time> element (which is intended for adding events to the user's calendar or adding reminders about people's birthdays) allow dates from year 1 to infinity.
    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    Therefore, it is impossible to write documents about Julius Cesar, Moses or dinosaurs using HTML 5, unless the articles are accessed through a form requiring such agreement.
    No, it's just as possible as it is using HTML4. Just don't use the <time> element for those use cases because it wasn't intended for them and is not designed to support them.

    http://www.quirksmode.org/blog/archi..._time_saf.html

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    Forthermore, the HTML 5 representation of ISO 8601 is broken, as the hyphens in ISO 8601-compliant dates must be non-breaking.
    Not sure what you mean... But if it's broken then speak up.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    It is still not possible to transscribe certain physical documents in HTML 5, as tt, strike, u and other such elements with presentational-semantic meaning are removed. It was possible to use these elements with HTML 4.01 Transitional (as they were only deprecated) or HTML 3.2, but as of HTML 5, these elements are dropped.
    Indeed. Either you could use HTML 4.01 Transitional (or PDF or other) for that use case, or you could extend HTML5 by using <span class="underlined"> or <span data-format="underlined">. Or you could try to convince the WG that <u> should be allowed -- I know some people in the WG think it should.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stomme poes View Post
    I have noticed the working groups on HTML5 seem to want to leave out accessibility stuff,
    That seems to be a misunderstanding. Being in the WG, I don't know anyone who wants to leave out accessibility stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stomme poes View Post
    but after everyone complains loudly enough, they add them back in.
    No, rather, after having researched and carefully considered feature X, it gets specified. Of course there was much noise generated from the fact that pet feature X was lacking in the specification but that did not really affect the result.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stomme poes View Post
    Remember when they left the headers table attribute out, saying "nobody needs them, there's no such thing as irregular tables, and web authors don't use it correctly anyway, and the software out there doesn't use it right anyway"? Everyone got pretty hot about that one, and one day, there it was, in the specs. So, I'm pretty sure someone will get access keys (or some good replacement) in there eventually.
    headers="" is a perfect example. As I said above, accesskeys still haven't got the treatment that headers have got to date.

    Quote Originally Posted by arkinstall View Post
    The dialog tag... there's no real reason for it. How often do you use dialog in a site?! And the suggested syntax is terrible.
    Personally, I think <dl> (or other general markup) could be used for dialogues.

    Quote Originally Posted by arkinstall View Post
    The least they can do is have a link between dialog and name,
    There is a link between DT and DD.

    Quote Originally Posted by arkinstall View Post
    Datagrid element!? So that means table is deprecated, right? Oh, no.
    I don't follow.

    Quote Originally Posted by arkinstall View Post
    IFrame is deprecated and yet they're adding features.
    It's not deprecated in HTML5.

    Quote Originally Posted by arkinstall View Post
    And what happened to href being applied to any element?
    It led to <a> being allowed to contain block elements.

    http://wiki.whatwg.org/wiki/FAQ#HTML...any_element.21

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    Stommes
    Another good example of semantic application of the so-called purely presentational elements. Yet another one would be the title of a cited reference, which according to ISO 690 should be italic. By writing <cite>Author. <i>Title</i>. Place : Publisher, year. Pp., the title can be easily extracted.
    In HTML5, <cite> means "title of work", so the above would be
    Code:
    Author. <cite>Title</cite>. Place : Publisher, year. Pp.
    ...which makes it at least just as easy to extract the title.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Ankerstjerne View Post
    And yes, datagrid doesn't make any sense. It's called a table. Datagrid seems to be some word they've invented, because about half of all coders equal tables to layout, and about half equal tables to evil. This is akin to re-naming knifes to zaszorfs, to prevent assailants from using knifes in assaults.
    Datagrid doesn't make much sense to me, either. <datagrid> is not a renamed <table>, though -- you can nest a <table> inside a <datagrid>. I think datagrid is intended to support things like spreadsheets and sortable columns.
    Last edited by zcorpan; Apr 15, 2009 at 01:31. Reason: typo
    Simon Pieters

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    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy C. Ankerstjerne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vanishdesign View Post
    I sympathize with your attempt to transcribe documents faithfully, but I can safely assume you're in a tiny minority when it comes to using the web for that purpose.
    Perhaps, but users which can't see images are a small minority too. That doesn't mean the alt attribute should be deprecated.
    Christian Ankerstjerne
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    Theoretical Physics Student bronze trophy Jake Arkinstall's Avatar
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    Alt is deprecated, but replaced by:
    Code html:
    <img src="img.gif">Alternative Text</img>

    Personally I think that XHTML 2 spec looks much, much better than the HTML 5 spec. I hope that browsers will end up supporting it.
    Jake Arkinstall
    "Sometimes you don't need to reinvent the wheel;
    Sometimes its enough to make that wheel more rounded"-Molona

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    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    The XHTML 2 spec is way better than the HTML 5 spec. XHTML 2 is SGML. XHTML 2 is XML. HTML 5 is neither.
    Stephen J Chapman

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    <input name="html5" type="text" required pattern="^$">

  25. #25
    Theoretical Physics Student bronze trophy Jake Arkinstall's Avatar
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    I think the XHTML 2 spec has been written in the eye of a strict semantic developer, with elements which will be of real use.

    This doesn't seem to be the case with HTML5.
    Jake Arkinstall
    "Sometimes you don't need to reinvent the wheel;
    Sometimes its enough to make that wheel more rounded"-Molona


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