Decoding HTML5

Jeffrey Way delivers a simple guide to understanding HTML5 for the every day designer or developer.

Hi, I’m Jeffrey, the author of Decoding HTML5. I’m a web developer who has been diving into the HTML5 spec for years. Toying with new JavaScript APIs is like Christmas for me!

When I set out to write this book, I had one goal in mind: decipher that incredibly confusing spec into something that any John Q. designer or developer can understand. It’s what I wish I had in the beginning.
—Jeffrey Way

Decoding HTML5

This book focuses less on the politics of HTML5 (though it does touch on this), and more on the ways to immediately integrate HTML5 – and its friends – into your web projects.
If you’re in need of a book that will get you up and running with many of the new tags, form elements, and JavaScript APIs as quickly as possible, then this is the book for you.
Jeffrey Way is one of the most popular web development teachers on the net. He is the editor of Nettuts+, author of two top-selling books, and is the Head of Web Development Courses at Tuts+ Premium.

The History of HTML5

Learn how HTML5 came to be…HTML5! You’ll learn about the politics and history, as well as the difference between all of those confusing acronyms, like W3C, WHAT WG, and HTML WG.

The State of HTML5

You’ve likely heard various reports that HTML5 won’t be “ready” until 2022. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, HTML5 is ready to use…right now!

Semantic Markup

Before we can learn about the semantic new tags that are available, we must first learn what to remove, and how to ensure that Internet Explorer 8 and below still get to play with the cool kids. Once we’ve stripped all unnecessary content and attributes, we can shift our focus to the new elements.

Easy Queries with the Selectors API

The Selectors API introduces two new ways to query the DOM. Now we can use the CSS selectors that we’re already familiar with to dive into the DOM. JavaScript library users will feel right at home!

Custom Data Attributes

In the past, we often resorted to random element attributes for the purposes of containing, or storing data. It wouldn’t be uncommon to “communicate” with a script, via a class attribute. A smarter solution is to take advantage of HTML5 custom attributes.

Perhaps a bit ironically titled, this chapter will focus on all of the new HTML5 elements and attributes that are available to us. I know, I know; forms are boring. Luckily, HTML5 makes them — not fun — but less boring! If you’ve ever found yourself setting default placeholder text, performing client-side validation, or using date picker plugins, you’ve no doubt had first-hand experience with the limitations of the browser. Though it’s taking a bit longer than we might hope, browsers are beginning to come around, with Opera and Webkit leading the pack.
The Essentials of Feature Detection

While ultimately I will recommend that you use a tool called Modernizr to perform feature tests, it’s certainly important to understand how it’s done manually. Abstractions are fantastic — just as long as you have a modest idea what’s going on behind the scenes. This chapter details the essentials of manually performing feature detection.


  • Andrew
    May 20, 2012 11:46:50 am

    About the author
    Jeffrey Way

    Jeffrey Way is a developer evangelist and instructor who works for Envato.

    When not managing one of the most popular web development blogs in the world, Nettuts+, or creating courses for Tuts+ Premium, he enjoys playing with cutting edge web technologies, and finding new ways to teach complicated subjects and concepts, so that anyone can understand.

    He is also the author of several Rockable Press books, and can typically be found scanning Twitter when he should really be getting back to work.

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