Considering myself something of a web and WordPress developer, of course I looked into using HTML5 in all its much vaunted and promised glory of cutting edge yet backward compatible technology, and see what it was all about.
I was quickly confused, and somewhat put-off.
Confused about what?
Mostly the confusion was to do with all of the new elements and replacements for the good old div tag. I thought I was never going to be able to wrap my head around when to use head, article, aside, em versus italics and so on.
I knew that I was not ready to dive headlong into canvas and video elements, but my main concern was getting the document structure correct and if I was having issues with that, well, why would I want to exacerbate the problem by adding in shiny newer features that I didn’t yet fully understand?
Besides, I quite liked having different levels of header in my code, and it made sense to me.
Sitting in limbo
So I put my journey into HTML5 (or now as it is called, simply HTML) on hold.
It didn’t mean I wouldn’t stop trying to learn about some new features and look into where it was all heading, but I no longer felt comfortable in diving in and trying to get a site pass HTML5 compliance (and therefore wasn’t particularly comfortable in offering it to my clients).
My HTML5 revelation
Then, almost by chance, I came across a book that I must credit as changing my view and re-inspiring me to work more closely with HTML5 and look at converting my own backyard, as it were.
That book was: The Truth About HTML5.
Rather than be a mere poster-child for all good things to do with the evolving HTML standard, this book also goes to some length to explain what is bad about HTML5. How I was gladdened to see that some of the new elements made the list of “cons”. To the point of recommending not using them (done). The book also goes to great lengths to explain why some of the new options in HTML5 shouldn’t be used (rather than just dissing them).
It was certainly a compelling read and one that I could hardly put down once started, causing me to almost miss my train stop on the way to work on more than one occasion!
It gave me enough ammunition to go ahead and make my own site HTML5 compliant.
The Truth About HTML5 is littered with useful links and further reading should you be so inclined, but in itself has enough information (without being an HTML5 tutorial) to get you started along the long, yet now not quite as dark, path of the latest in web technologies.
A must read for anyone interested in venturing into HTML5.