KillerSites Blog

HTML

Should web designers be learning HTML 5?

April 15, 2010

html 5

Hi,

I am starting to hear that all too familiar nerd-buzz of premature excitement – this time it’s about HTML 5 and all it’s cool new capabilities.

Yes, HTML 5 does have a lot of cool things it can do, and so it’s tempting to jump in and start learning. But that would largely be a waste of time … at least for now.

What?! Isn’t HTML 5 the future?

It sure is. In fact, I’ve been telling people for years that XHTML was a pipe dream (because IE would not support it) and I advised people to stick to good old HTML … even when it was heresy to say so! Here’s the problem (now) with HTML 5 – most of the browsers being used today don’t support it AND it will take a few years before the majority of people out there will have HTML 5 equipped browsers.

… Man, reality does bite!

Hard-core nerds tend to ignore reality

A time long, long ago, in an Internet that is now far, far away … back in the mid to late 1990’s, CSS was invented and naive nerds such as myself started playing with it, investing precious time that could have been spent playing video games, only to find that most of the browsers being used did not support it … so using CSS was basically useless.

… It took several years before CSS enabled browsers had penetrated enough to use CSS in a serious way. Using CSS prior to wide adoption, only ended with wasted time and disappointment, since you could not actually use it live. The same will be true for much of HTML 5 – unless you start hacking and browser sniffing and all kinds of other nonsense.

Let me conclude by quoting Coder’s Code #36:

The wise web designer shall not waste precious time on learning cutting edge technology … if said nerd wishes to earn a living.

Stefan Mischook
www.killersites.com

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Is HTML a scripting language?

August 24, 2006

I’ve seen this confusion come up from time to time – is HTML a scripting language?

Short answer: no.

Yes a nerd detail, but nonetheless, this is something that should be made clear.

THE DETAILS:

HTML is actually a markup language and not a scripting language.

Scripting implies decision making capabilities (the code can actually evaluate and take an action based on what it finds) – PHP, PERL, Ruby, Javascript are examples of scripting languages.

Markup languages create structure for a document … they only describe data. For example:

  • HTML
  • XHTML
  • XML

… but you knew that already.

[;)]

Stefan Mischook

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Book Review: Web Design in a Nutshell – 3rd edition

August 2, 2006

This book should probably be on any web designers/developers desk.

Web design has changed drastically since this book’s first edition came out … and thankfully Web Design In A Nutshell has been updated accordingly.

As with all of Oreilly’s ‘Nutshell’ books, Web Design In A Nutshell covers each topic in a concise and yet complete manner making it both a great learning title (for people with some web design skills,) and a great reference.

Some of the topics covered:

  • CSS – basics, page layout methods, hacks, tricks etc
  • HTML, XML and XHTML
  • Accessibility
  • Web graphics

… and so much more.

Besides the core coverage of the material itself, this book is also packed with great references to web sites and other good books on web design.

Get the book.

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