The first draft of HTML version 5 is now available. This is a working draft and is probably a long way from true implementation. However, it does give us an idea of where HTML is headed. There is also a document which defines the differences between versions 4 and 5. It is an excellent document and even a scan of it would give you an idea of their direction.
Some of the major changes that might be in the final version include:
- Different, and shorter, DOCTYPE statement
- New elements that identify more specific structure of a document, e.g., section, article, header, footer, nav, audio, video
- New attributes that work with existing elements like form elements
- Elements that have different meanings, e.g., a without href is a placeholder, b is a span of text that is offset stylistically, i is a span of text in an alternate voice or mood
- Elements not to be used, e.g., center, font, frame, acronym
- Attributes not to be used include those that deal with presentation, as CSS is preferred
- Some APIs are included, e.g., playing video/audio, drag and drop
Neat stuff — I’m looking forward to the next draft to see how much of this stays and how much more is coming!