HTML5 is Feature Complete. Hello HTML5.1!

Contributing Editor

HTML5 logoThe world may end on Friday, but at least all web-based doomsday announcements can be coded according to the finalized HTML5 specification!

The W3C HTML5 and Canvas 2D Context Specifications became Candidate Recommendations on December 17, 2012. While there remain a number logistical hoops to jump through before they hit Recommendation status in mid 2014, the specifications can be considered “feature complete”. Nothing more will be added other than fine-tuning owing to interoperability or performance issues.

So how does this affect your day-to-day web development?

It doesn’t — and never has. HTML5 has been viable for several years and the specification status makes little difference to real-world coding practices. HTML4.01 achieved Recommendation status on Christmas Eve 1999, but it doesn’t follow that all browsers support all features. A ‘completed’ specification is no substitute for rigorous browser testing.

HTML5 is more recent and less stable but new elements will usually fallback to something sensible, e.g. <input type="email" /> will render as <input type="text" /> in older browsers.

However, the announcement will break a few psychological barriers. Those who have been avoiding HTML5 because the specification was a draft now have fewer excuses.

HTML5.1 is the Future!

The W3C has provided a couple of shiny new specifications:

You won’t find anything revolutionary just yet, but additional HTML and canvas features will appear in these documents as we move forward.

Fortunately, this means you can claim HTML5.1-compliance for your existing sites and patronize those sticking to the ‘quaint’ HTML5 standard! Place HTML5.1 skills on your résumé and LinkedIn profile — you’ll be inundated with job offers from employers who want a meaningless marketing advantage over their competitors.

Free book: Jump Start HTML5 Basics

Grab a free copy of one our latest ebooks! Packed with hints and tips on HTML5's most powerful new features.

  • http://www.netcentrics.co.uk Pete Wright

    Nice one, Craig! Now does that count as cynicism, or realism? The older I get, the harder it is to tell the difference. :-)

  • http://niteodesign.com Blake Petersen

    LMAO! Great article! Updating my LinkedIn to profile’s 12 HTML5 references to HTML5.1! Recruiters will go nuts! ;]

  • benny

    As a matter of fact, HTML5 is nothing about technology, it’s about the battle around dominant speech right for web, even the whole IT world. That’s why those giants are fighting with each other.

  • Dennis

    Shhh benny, the grown-ups are talking.

  • http://www.gamblingandgaming.com Backrubber

    Crickey…we’re already talking about HTML5.1 – why don’t we just call it HTML because browser support for any particular version of HTML is always a bit hit and miss. As a web developer, I’m only ever interested in the elements, for example, that are supported by browsers rather than the version of HTML that the elements belong to.

  • http://www.devangsolanki.com HTML5 Developer

    Nice informative article.

    it’s not matter of battle or anything. its all concerning leader. HTML5 is leading new era of technology with less efforts, cut of value and a lot of bring home the bacon / achieve.

    Now it count as pessimism or realism, It more durable tell the distinction for freshers

    It is for the certain that Recruiters can go crazy HTML5 references to HTML5.1