I recently attended a HTML5 master class at Hull School of Art & Design delivered by James Field, this was very interesting and it left me realising that to keep up to date or even stay ahead of the game in my professional field, a good knowledge of HTML5 would not only be useful but essential.  To enhance the knowledge I gained from the HSAD master class, I started and have just completed the course HTML5 First Look by James Williamson on, see certificate below:

Phillip Shakesby








I believe that having a working understanding of HTML5 will be very useful to my project, as it offers new possibilities for my supporting website and possibly an option for my application development, although I do not think this will be my direction with application development I will not rule it out until I have done further research.

What is HTML5 and why am I looking at it as part of my MA?  Basically HTML or HyperText Markup Language is the main code used in web pages and HTML5 is the next generation of HTML.

HTML 5 is the next generation or an evolvement of the current html code.  As the internet has grown and developed, third party plug-ins such as Adobe Flash Player and others have been created and used to meet the requirements of users who were demanding an experience that HTML alone could not deliver.  XHTML 2.0 was born in an attempt to meet the changing user needs but it broke the longstanding practice of being backwards compatible and some web professionals were unhappy with this new direction, eventually the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) who are an international community, whose mission is to lead the World Wide Web to its full potential by developing protocols and guidelines that ensure the long-term growth of the Web and the WHATWG (Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group), an unofficial collaboration of Web browser manufacturers and interested parties who are concerned in evolving the Web by focussing the development of HTML and APIs needed for Web applications, combined their efforts in a single direction under the name HTML5.

Together they established some rules for HTML5:

  • New features should be based on HTML, CSS, DOM, and JavaScript
  • Reduce the need for external plug-ins (like Flash)
  • Better error handling
  • More mark-up to replace scripting
  • HTML5 should be device independent
  • The development process should be visible to the public

They also looked at developing some interesting new features including:

  • The canvas element for drawing
  • The video and audio elements for media playback
  • Better support for local offline storage
  • New content specific elements, like article, footer, header, nav, section etc.
  • New form controls, like calendar, date, time, email, url, search etc.

HTML5 is not yet an official standard, and no browsers currently have complete support for HTML5 but the rate at which major browsers, such as:

  • Internet Explorer
  • Firefox
  • Chrome
  • Safari
  • Opera

are adding support for HTML5 features is incredibly impressive.  HTML5 through its new structure and features should help me and my fellow designers and developers to build richer user experiences for websites and mobile applications, there will also be less worry about people using older browsers, as it is designed to retain backwards compatibility to previous versions of HTML.


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