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What is HTML?
HTML is an acronym for HyperText Markup Language. It is a markup language that web developers use to create documents to display them in web browsers. In simple terms, it is the standard markup language for creating web pages. It lets you design and organize paragraphs, sections, and links using HTML elements, tags, and attributes.
Many people refer to HTML as a programming language. However, it is not true because it is a markup language and cannot create any dynamic functionality. Another important thing to note is that HTML is an official web standard, and W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) is responsible for maintaining and updating its specifications.
Tim Berners-Lee, in 1990, designed HTML. His idea was to create a system so it would be easier for the researchers at CERN to store and share documents. These documents would be stored on a server, and it would be possible for researchers to access them through a web browser.
After a long time, in 1989, he proposed a memo that described the internet-based hypertext system. Later, he specified HTML and created a server and software for the same in 1990.
Along with Tim Berners-Lee, there was another data systems engineer Robert Cailliau at CERN who requested funding at CERN for creating a hypertext system. However, CERN rejected it at that time.
Later in 1991, Tim Berners-Lee publicly released the description of HTML through a document named ‘HTML Tags’. This document included 18 elements, out of which 11 are still present in HTML 4.
HTML 2.0 and 3.2
The year 1995 witnessed the release of HTML 2.0, which included all the features of HTML 1.0 and some additional features. In 1997, HTML 3.2 was released as a W3C recommendation. It was the first version of HTML standardized by W3C. Also, HTML started supporting CSS from this version.
HTML 4.0 and 5.0
HTML 4.0 was also a W3C recommendation and was released in 1998 in three different variations, namely Strict, Transitional, and Frameset. The latest version, i.e., HTML 5, is also a W3C recommendation, released in 2014. Later, the years 2016 and 2018 witnessed the releases of HTML 5.1 and HTML 5.2, respectively.
The following are the remarkable features of HTML:
- HTML describes the structure of websites.
- It comes with a wide range of formatting tags through which you can make an effective presentation.
- Being a markup language, HTML provides an easy way to handle the structure and design of a website, along with content.
- The HTML anchor tag enables you to add links to the web pages.
- It is a platform-independent markup language.
- HTML allows you to add graphics, images, text, audio, and videos to web pages.
- It is a case-sensitive language.
Some of the notable upsides of HTML are as follows:
- HTML is a fairly simple language to learn and use.
- Since it is a popular markup language, it has detailed and comprehensive documentation. Also, you will find various resources on the internet in case you get stuck while developing websites using HTML.
- It is open-source, and anyone can use it freely.
- It works with almost every modern browser.
- It provides templates for everything, and you can use them when you don’t want to write code from scratch.
Here are the significant downsides of HTML:
- HTML is a static language, and hence, you cannot generate dynamic output.
- To create just a simple web page, you need to write a lot of HTML code.
- It offers limited security features.
- You need to program each page of your website separately since it is not a centralized language.
- When your website has multiple web pages, it becomes pretty difficult to handle them.
- It can only create basic web pages since it comes with limited features.
In the initial stages of the Web, since its inception, the web pages were only static. They would not have dynamic behavior. As a result, it was necessary to make web pages dynamic. In 1995, Netscape decided to introduce a scripting language for the Netscape Navigator , a web browser developed by the Netscape Corporation.
To do so, Netscape had only two options. One was to collaborate with Sun Microsystems to incorporate the Java language, and the other was to hire ??Brendan Eich to create a new language. They decided to go with the second one, where they hired Eich to design a new language whose syntax would be similar to Java and less like other scripting languages.
- Dynamically-Typed: There is no need to define the data type of a variable while declaring. Based on the value of the variable, the interpreter will automatically assign the data type during runtime.
- Lightweight Scripting Language: It is a lightweight scripting language because it has low memory usage and simple syntax. It is not a general-purpose language; rather, it is developed for data handling in the browser only.
- It supports all the modern web browsers, including Microsoft Edge, Safari, Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome . As a result, it is present everywhere.
- It works well with other programming languages. You can embed it into web pages or inside the script of other programming languages.
- This language does not support multiple inheritance.
It is a markup language that provides structure and design to websites.
It is a scripting language that makes web pages more dynamic and interactive.
The primary purpose of HTML is to provide websites with their basic structure and layout.
HTML is a static language, and hence, it cannot manipulate web content.
It is cross-browser compatible. This means that all the features of HTML work well in every version of a browser.
An HTML file uses the .html extension.
A web server is responsible for rendering the HTML code. This means that the web server processes the HTML code before sending them to a client (a web browser).
HTML is very easy to understand and implement.
HTML is maintained by W3C and WHATWG.
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