Hypertext Markup Language, a W3C recommendation.
The lingua franca for publishing hypertext on the World Wide Web.
A non-proprietary format based upon SGML (XHTML is based on , XML).
The only SGML
document type that is currently universally understood by all Web browsers.
A common target for XML output transforms created using XSLT
- Enables universal access (via Web browses) to formatted information content.
- Useful as a simple document type for information that does not benefit from more task-specific markup.
- Well understood and supported.
- Large pool of skilled HTML developers and programmers.
How HTML Works:
To publish information for global distribution, one needs a universally understood language, a kind of publishing mother tongue that all computers may potentially understand. The publishing language used by the World Wide Web is HTML.
HTML gives authors the means to:
- Publish online documents with headings, text, tables, lists, photos, etc.
- Retrieve online information via hypertext links, at the click of a button.
- Design forms for conducting transactions with remote services, for use in searching for information, making reservations, ordering products, etc.
- Include spread-sheets, video clips, sound clips, and other applications directly in their documents.
There are a number of flavors of HTML in use and with various levels of support in Web browsers. HTML 4.01 is the latest (and probably last) version of the SGML form of HTML. XHTML is the XML-conforming refinement of HTML. As an SGML application, HTML allows a number of syntactic shortcuts that makes it easy to create but that complicate its parsing and processing.
XHTML does not change the basic semantics of the original HTML document type but makes available all the new XML facilities that are not available to the original HTML, such as using name spaces to integrate elements from different documents in a controlled and meaningful way. For example, the W3C has developed an XHTML profile that defines the appropriate combination of XHTML, the Mathematics markup language (MathML), and SVG.