HTML 5 Spec Released, Warts and All

    Matthew Magain

    The W3C released the first draft of the HTML5 spec yesterday — warts and all. As far as technical specifications go, it’s pretty interesting reading.

    A large part of what is interesting is what is new in everybody’s favourite markup language:

    • header, nav, article, dialog, section, aside, and footer elements
    • The canvas element (shameless plug: there’s an awesome chapter about it in our latest book)
    • Inclusion of the video and audio elements
    • Support for persistent client-side data storage
    • Support for users to edit documents and parts of documents interactively
    • RSS feeds as part of the page’s markup

    It’s just as interesting noting what’s missing:

    • frame and frameset (hooray!)
    • font (cheer!)
    • applet, among others

    Rumour has it that one faction of the HTML working group were lobbying hard to have the meta tag removed in order to prevent Microsoft from hijacking it, but they were clearly unsuccessful.

    Check out the list of differences between HTML4 and HTML5 if you find the thought of tackling the entire spec a little daunting.

    For me, what really makes the spec an entertaining read, however, is the fact that so many of the review comments for areas that are still problematic, are still in place. There is obviously still a fair amount of work ahead, though, if the following is anything to go by: