Changes Implemented for HTML5

Most changes made to the HTML practices for HTML5 are primarily due to the new objectives for the language that were planned over years. The objectives include:

Decreasing JavaScript, CSS, and HTML overlap Creating a barrier between design and content Encouraging semantic markup The Elimination of Plugins with the support of Rich media experiences Instigating design and accessibility responsiveness

Leaning HTML5 can often be described as figuring out which CSS features replace HTML features. This is a misconception because to truly learn HTML5, you must understand how these new objectives affected the development of the language.

Decreasing the JavaScript, CSS, and HTML Overlap

Three languages define front-end website development. These languages are JavaScript, CSS, and HTML. Each of these languages has evolved to create its advanced useful forms. Their evolutions did not occur separately. These evaluations occurred in parallel to each other and have caused an overlap of scope and functionality. While functionality may overlap, each of these languages does gravitate toward its purpose. Each is described below:

JavaScript → Interactivity CSS → Design HTML → Content

There has been a focus on either limiting or expanding on the specific purposes of each of these languages. Understanding what these specific languages are meant to do can help to know how to use them to effectively close the gap of language overlap. Since CSS is mainly used for design, you may think that this is the language that you would use to change color. This is true, but you may want to change color as a result of user input with JavaScript.

Creating the Barrier Between Design and Content

The HTML5 specification discourages non-meaningful markup. Non-meaningful markup can be described as markup that is meant to inform the browser how to display content. Non-meaningful markup may include:

The declaration of text colors and fonts Text alignment setting & justification Table settings like borders Defining text wrapping for images

Most of the features of HTML that support these functions have been depreciated completely. Some are still available, but these come with a warning that their use is not a recommended practice. The separation is supported by two valid reasons:

The process of redesigning and maintaining a site is easier when style declarations are confined strictly to CSS. Users view content on laptops, desktops, RSS readers, and more. Design and style decisions may make sense in one environment but may not in another. It’s better to provide semantic information to allow content to adapt to any context.

Encouraging Semantic Markup

Semantic markup can be described as markup with meaning. For instance, the tag

gives you the impression that the content is a headline or title of the document. Without the use of the

tag, you could just make the text large with bold. All previous versions of HTML had some form of semantic markup available. Such markup could be related to document metadata, headings tags, and the link rel attribute. In previous versions of the language, there are elements that are part of a common structure. This includes navigation menus, headers, and more. These were all indicated with the
tag in HTML. Newer semantic elements give a page its basic structure. These basic structure elements can be seen below: