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An introduction to HTML

Most of the businesses in today’s world have an online presence and a decent website. HTML is used in order to make and display those web applications and web pages. First developed by Tim Berners-Lee in 1990, HTML is short form for Hyper Text Markup Language.  HTML forms the structural layer of web pages.

HTML is used by 76.6% of all websites. HTML5 is used by 84.6% of all websites who use HTML.(Source: https://w3techs.com/technologies/details/ml-html/all/all)

Popular sites using HTML:

  • google.com
  • facebook.com
  • youtube.com
  • wikipedia.com

There are different elements in a webpage like a paragraph, list, heading, link, image, multimedia player, form, etc. HTML determines which one your web content should be recognised, from these elements.

What is Markup?

HTML markup consists of several key components. Some are mentioned below:

  • tags(and their attributes): Mostly tags come in pairs <p> which is a start tag and </p> which is an end tags which is also referred as closing tag.
  • character-based data types
  • character references
  • entity references

Features supported by HTML:

  1. Text which consist of paragraphs, headings, quotes, etc.
  2. Multimedia: images, audio, and video,
  3. Canvas: It allows drawing on the Web page using JavaScript code.

To develop a website, we need to learn CSS ( “Cascading Style Sheet”) as well as JavaScript along with HTML. These three languages create the base for web applications.

Versions of HTML:

There are different versions of HTML.

HTML1.0 (1989-1994): This was the first version of HTML which supported inline images and text controls. HTML 1.0 had very limited options for styling and presentation of content.

HTML 2.0: launched in 1995 supported more browsers, change of page background & use of tables

HTML 3.2: launched in 1997 supported creating tables and expanded options for form elements. This version also allowed web pages to include complex mathematical equations.

HTML 4.01: launched in 1999 added support for style sheets and scripting ability for multimedia elements. In HTML 4.0 with the use of style sheets, it is now possible to change the appearance/look of the website by changing just the style sheet (s) itself.

XHTML: launched in 2000, XHTML stands for EXtensible Hyper Text Markup Language. XHTML is almost identical to HTML 4.01 with only few differences. This is a cleaner and stricter version of HTML 4.01. XHTML was developed by World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to help web developers make the transition from HTML to XML.

HTML5: launched in 2014, HTML5 is the latest and most enhanced version of HTML.HTML5 along with CSS is also used to create responsive websites. Responsive websites provide a number of site layouts adapted to various screen widths. It uses CSS and HTML to resize, hide, shrink, enlarge, or move the content to make it look good on all devices like desktops, tablets, and phones.

DHTML: Dynamic HTML is a collective term for a combination of Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) tags and options that can make Web pages more animated and interactive than previous versions of HTML. For example, colour of a text heading changes as a user hovers over it.

XML: Extensible Markup Language, used for documentation and creating layout files during Android development.

Use of HTML in creating a Web Document

To create a web document, we have to write a set of codes and insert into a plain text file to format the content. We have to insert HTML tags, or commands, before and after sentences to indicate their format and location on the page. HTML tags are also needed to add tables, lists, images, videos and other elements to a webpage.

There are three main parts of web documents the head, title, and body. The head consists of identifying information about the website, including the website’s title and important keywords. The site’s title appears in the browser’s tab. The body is the main section that includes the text as well as graphics. Apart from these tags there are meta tags which link keywords associated with the webpage to search engines.

A WYSIWYG (What You See is What You Get) HTML editor is a software program with an interface similar to a word processing program which can be used   to write and format text and position graphics as they will appear on the webpage.

How HTML is used to Navigate the Internet

Hypertext is text that references other web pages allowing the user to access the referenced text or webpage on a click. HTML is used to embed hyperlinks within web pages. Hyperlinks allow the user to access web pages and websites stored on different servers.

These are just some of the uses and basics of HTML. To get detailed information and knowledge about HTML do join the course on HTML (https://www.millionlights.org/Course/AboutCourse?id=105&type=&pe=1) on Millionlights website and enhance your markup skills.