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Editing the W3C HTML5 spec

On 3 November, the Queen and Uncle Timbo (Sir Tim Berners-Lee to you) came round to Lawson Towers to threaten me with a punch in the face and a karate chop if I didn’t co-edit the W3C HTML5 spec. So I said yes — they look pretty frightening, I think you’ll agree. There’s a pretty […]

On HTML5 vs Living Standard, W3C vs WHATWG

That nice Stephen Shankland just published a news report HTML5 is done, but two groups still wrestle over Web’s future on CNET, quoting me a couple of times. As I’m occasionally asked questions about how I see the two different organisations working together (or not), here are the full questions that Steve asked me, and […]

Should you use HTML5 header and footer?

Matt Wilcox asked “I still don’t bother with <header> <footer> etc. I assume all widely used browsers support them now. But, do they do anything more than div?”. It’s a good question. The answer I gave is “yes”. These two elements (and <nav> and <main>) give value to users of some assistive technologies on some […]

HTML5 app manifests – are we emulating failure?

There’s a good article by groovecoder called Packaged HTML5 Apps: Are we emulating failure? which argues that “URLs delivered a better experience than native desktop apps; they can do the same for mobile apps”. groovecoder shows the shortcomings of app stores and installation processes, and suggests that a manifest/ packaging format for HTML apps would […]

More on DRM in HTML5

(This is a personal blogpost; it doesn’t represent the opinion of my employer, my wife or my hamster.) Until now, I hadn’t paid much attention to the details of the DRM extension to HTML (which is actually called “Encrypted Media Extensions” in the same way as some people call a “fart” a “trouser cough”). This […]


This week, I went to speak at Apps World, a great big “Global Developer Event, Mobile Marketing Conference” (according to its site). It was at Earls Court, full of people in suits (6000 attendees) and there was an average of 9.6 synergies per square meter. As I was waiting for my panel, I listened to […]

Scooby Doo and the proposed HTML5 <content> element

Note: Since writing this, I’ve continued vacillating and now support a <main> element. Why I changed my mind about the <main> element. Trigger warning: contains disagreement about accessibility. I’ve been vacillating (ooh err, missus) for two weeks from one opinion to the other regarding a proposed (and rejected) <content> element. This weekend, The Mighty Steve […]

Credit card, bank account numbers in HTML5 forms

It’s not appropriate to use input type=”number” for strings of digits such as bank account numbers or credit card numbers. input type=”number” is really for quantities, or real numbers. It’s implemented by Opera, Chrome and Safari as a spinner field (see the “shoesize” field in my HTML5 Forms Demo) – which isn’t a terribly good […]

Why HTML5 urgently needs an HTML adaptive images mechanism

After the recent kerfuffle about the draft HTML specification for a mechanism for adaptive images, and an excellent compromise suggestion by Florian Rivoal (Opera’s CSS WG rep), the mailing lists have gone quiet again. (If you don’t know why we need such a mechanism, read Matt “Grrr” Wilcox‘s article Responsive images: what’s the problem, and […]

Introducing HTML5 Second edition

Yay! The first, the original, the sexiest, the motherflippin’ brownest book on HTML5, Introducing HTML5 is out in second edition! What’s new? It’s bigger, baby – having swollen from 223 pages to a tumescent 295 pages – for less than the cover price of the original. Apart from a photo of the snogtabulous uberhunks™ that […]