Building a Better Website with HTML5 & CSS3
HTML5 and CSS3 are the newest web languages designed to help you create elegant and efficient websites easily. HTML5 elements are related to page structure, while CSS3 is concerned with presentation. While they are both still in the developmental phase, both are beginning to be successfully experimented with all over the web. Take some time to become familiar with the major changes now. You’ll be ahead of the game and your website will benefit immediately from your new knowledge.
HTML5 is the latest, most advanced version of traditional HTML. It is not intended to replace the existing language, but to introduce improvements and new features that will increase the functionality and accessibility of websites. This means you can easily experiment with the new features within your existing framework. HTML5 remains under development, with only a few browsers actively supporting it. However, its improvements have already begun to be implemented successfully by developers, and it is expected to become fully supported and widely used across the web.
HTML5 was developed to help keep pages consistent and easily readable by search engines and devices such as screen readers. It allows for a much better organized and accessible page structure, which means that your website is more likely to be indexed quickly and categorized properly in SERPs. Many HTML5 features are intended to improve SEO methods and results. This will help bring in more of the targeted traffic you need. It also improves support for multimedia applications. It will allow pages to load more quickly than ever before. Many of these features are available now to help you become acquainted with the changes and begin improving your website.
Some of the most basic improvements with HTML5 include the use of semantic tags for the inclusion of most common content and elements. These tags reduce clutter and clarify meaning. The traditional collection of div tags will be replaced by specific markups including aside and nav. Older elements like font and center have been removed, and frames have been eliminated. It also improves native support for form elements and actions, simplifying server side processing.
The most highly anticipated feature of HTML5 may be the simple, browser-based video element. Most mobile devices cannot currently access Flash or other similar media content. HTML5 introduces the inclusion of video and other media through browser-based components, eliminating the need for plugins. This will make it easy for you to develop mobile-friendly websites and applications that are accessible by any device. It will no longer be necessary to create a different app for each brand of device.
Some browsers are not yet supporting some HTML5 functions. For this reason, you need to be fully knowledgeable about the discrepancies when you begin to integrate new features on your website. Different browsers are expected to begin supporting HTML5 in different capacities. As the language becomes more widely used, its results are expected to improve.
It is up to you to understand and recognize the differences, and provide alternative solutions to possible issues. However, you can be fairly sure that this upgrade will become popular and widely supported over the next few years. Google recently began creating a YouTube version based on HTML5 features, and many other developers are beginning to understand the importance of the changes.
The first change to be aware of is the simplification of the doctype. HTML5 has just one tag: !DOCTYPE html.
The Content Editable feature lets you specify areas of text that you can allow your users to edit. Just add contenteditable=”true” to the element. Any text placed between the tags will be easily editable.
The Canvas element allows you to create and place two dimensional images and vector graphics directly within your code. This eliminates the need in many cases for image editing software.
Video and other media support is one of the most significant changes of HTML5. It allows simplified inclusion of media to your website without the use of plugins. It also allows the actual content of the media to be accessible by search engines, screen readers, and mobile devices. Once the language is fully supported, you will be able to easily add video, audio, and other media directly into your code with the use of a simple element.
Application caching is a significant improvement in the offline navigation of web pages and applications. This development will allow the creation and widespread use of rich Internet apps with the ability to be used as powerful desktop applications without an Internet connection.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) provide a wide variety of options for displaying your content. CSS simplifies and streamlines loading of structural components while sharing formatting across multiple pages. Aside from enhancing loading speed, many CSS features aren’t absolutely necessary for website functionality. However, CSS3 offers designers a new range of creative opportunities. It is a great way to ensure an aesthetically pleasing, fast-loading presentation.
CSS3 features are actually a component of the new HTML5 umbrella, and not a separate entity. The improvements being introduced by CSS3 make changes easier and more convenient. It will split development up into modules. It allows updates and testing of individual modules, simplifying the integration and maintenance of a website.
It also incorporates some exciting new features to further improve the visual appeal and empower the functionality of your website. It offers new classes, selectors and properties, making it easy to set up an aesthetically pleasing layout very quickly. The idea is to continue reducing clutter while encouraging visitors to spend time enjoying the website. One new user-friendly feature is the option to preview a page before loading it in its entirety. Visitors will surely appreciate this ability.
One current issue with CSS is that some browsers require filters to display content properly. CSS can be misread by Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome. A number of CSS3 codes have been developed for different browsers to provide the proper delivery of CSS.
RGBA Coloring: Does away with the need for hex colors; you can now easily specify the opacity and the amount of red, green, and blue in your designs. RGBA determines the value of opacity for only a single declaration. Conveniently eliminates the use of browser extensions.
Levels of opacity: To change opacity of an image, just input the opacity level of the desired effect. An opacity of “1” means the element will be completely opaque, while an opacity of “0” means the element is solid. Opacity determines the value for an element including all children. No more filters or image manipulation.
Easy-to-add Fonts: Simply upload font file to your server, link it to a CSS file, and make a new font family.
Multiple Columns: Easily divide your text into columns by specifying number of columns, column width, spacing, and separators.
Resize: Available when working with Safari, allows easy one-click resizing of any element.
Transform: Allows you to specify the alternate image or content and size during hover.
Border Images: Gives you the ability to use any image as a border.
Multiple Backgrounds: Apply multiple backgrounds to any area.
Rounded Corners: This has been a difficult issue in the past. CSS3 lets you do it with no problem and no need to use images to achieve the effect.
Future of HTML5 and CSS3