“Connection, connection, connection.”, pretty much sums up Brett McLaughlin’s long – in fact if copied to Word exactly the 15 pages of the research papers that he tells us used to plague the Web – but definitely worthwhile (and very readable) article on HTML5.
As Brett notes, Tim Berners-Lee dreamed up HTML to re-cast never-ending articles as individual, connected pages and this function as an interconnection enabler has always been at the core of the programming language. “It is called the Internet, remember?”
HTML5 then is just this connecting ability taken to new extremes in a Web-environment – and physical world – where there’s little that isn’t connected. But, as Brett writes, it’s now about connecting “a lot more than hypertext with static images”. Audio and video may be making the headlines, but they are only the first of a possible “20 or 25 elements” which will go “well beyond” them. “The important thing here is that multiple pieces in multiple places can all be wired together in a meaningful way”.
As a programmer, this ability to connect excites him most in terms of the collaboration it can/should generate between web people and content people. Instead of seeing websites as a walled garden of content that you or your organisation owns, he argues for one big shared jungle where the fertility of the soil makes for ever richer, more interesting things. This may not appeal so much to publishers and other content creator organisations, who are understandably concerned about who gets the credit for the products of all this collaboration, but it is probably the direction the Internet will take.
The interconnection theme continues with HTML5 and mobile. HTML5 is touted as the big mobile solution but, “the story really isn’t that HTML5 has great mobile support; rather it’s that mobile is no longer a problem child.” What HTML5 does is make content work, full stop, via whatever medium you’re using. And as well as connecting bits of content Brett hazards that “HTML5 has a really good shot at interconnecting all the devices floating around” which is of course for publishers one of its the biggest selling points.
Read the full article here: http://radar.oreilly.com/2011/07/what-is-html5.html