W3C to Develop New HTML Spec

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2007-03-07 Print this article Print

The group invites browser makers and application developers to help design the next version of the Web standard.

The World Wide Web Consortium has announced plans to create a new HTML standard and to enhance the XHTML specification.

The move to update HTML comes as a nod to the developer and design communities as well as the browser manufacturers. The W3C is issuing a call for participation in the working group that will oversee the new standard, and although the list of participants has yet to be made, browser vendors who are members of the W3C include Apple, Mozilla, Opera and Microsoft. In fact, Chris Wilson, platform architect of the Internet Explorer platform at Microsoft, is the co-chair of the new working group.

And the W3C is inviting not only the browser vendors, but also application developers and content designers to help design the next version of HTML by participating in the new W3C HTML Working Group. The W3C announced its plans on March 7.

"HTML started simply, with structured markup, no licensing requirements, and the ability to link to anything," said Tim Berners-Lee, W3C director and inventor of HTML, in a statement. More than anything, this simplicity and openness has led to its tremendous and continued success. It's time to revisit the standard and see what we can do to meet the current community needs, and to do so effectively with commitments from browser manufacturers in a visible and open way."

Click here to read more about new Web standards for XML.

According to W3C officials, after the publication of HTML 4 in late 1997, and following a 1998 Workshop, W3C intended to turn HTML into an XML-based format, called XHTML (Extensible HTML), because of the benefits of XML formats. But traditional browser vendors were slow to adopt XHTML because of the vast amount of legacy Web content that featured some variant of HTML. And content developers were less inclined to support XHTML as well.

Read the full story on eWEEK.com: W3C to Develop New HTML Spec

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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