HTML5: The Platform vs. the Specification

HTML5 is a specification that describes some new tags and markup, as well as some wonderful JavaScript APIs, but it’s getting caught up in a whirlwind of hype and promises. Unfortunately, HTML5 the standard has evolved into HTML5 the platform, creating an awful lot of confusion among developers, customers, and even authors. In some cases, pieces from the CSS3 specification such as shadows, gradients, and transformations are being called “HTML.” Browser makers are trying to one-up each other with how much “HTML5” they support. People are starting to make strange requests like “My site will be in HTML5, right?”

For the majority of the book, we’ll focus on the HTML5 and CSS3 specifications themselves and how you can use the techniques they describe. In the last part of the book, we’ll look into a suite of closely related specifications that were once part of HTML5 but are in use right now on multiple platforms. These include Web SQL Databases, Geolocation,
and Web Sockets. Although these things aren’t technically HTML5, they can help you build incredible things when combined with HTML5 and CSS3.