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HTML5 for Web Designers

(A Book Apart #1)

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3.98  ·  Rating details ·  3,091 ratings  ·  177 reviews
The HTML5 spec is 900 pages and hard to read. HTML5 for Web Designers is 85 pages and fun to read. Easy choice.

HTML5 is the longest HTML specification ever written. It is also the most powerful, and in some ways, the most confusing. What do accessible, content-focused standards-based web designers and front-end developers need to know? And how can we harness th
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ebook, 87 pages
Published May 4th 2010 by A Book Apart
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Graham Herrli
How often do you laugh out loud while reading about coding standards?
(a) All the time!
(b) Exceedingly rarely, but I'd like to.
(c) Never. I hate laughter.

If you answered a, I'm afraid of you. Please keep away.
If you answered c, I'm afraid for you. Come here; you need a hug.
Otherwise, this book's for you. Jeremy Keith presents a history of the evolution of HTML5 in a terse, satiric tone that makes this book a must-read for anyone hoping to gain a greater familiarity with HT
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Nitya
Jul 09, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had pre-ordered this book and received it yesterday - it took me just over an hour (the duration of my commute into NYC) to zip through it. Based on this, my quick review.

The book is a slim 86 pages. Given the amount of detail in the HTML5 spec, this may seem lightweight. And in fact the author does spend the first 2 (of only 6) chapters discussing the history and process behind the creation of this spec - which further unsettled me. BUT.... once you get to Chap 3 (Rich Media) thro
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Zlatan
Oct 19, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really don't want to be a party pooper, but I must say that I learned more about HTML5 by reading a couple of blog articles on the subject here and there. The only new things I actually learned is that the anchor element can now act as a block-level element, some new form features, the function of the "scoped" attribute, and the new content models.

I would suggest you to save your money, and instead find some online sources on HTML5, or just read Mark Pilgrim's free e-book that covers the same
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Caitlin (Ayashi)
Jul 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: web designers, web developers
Shelves: web-development
Great fast read for someone who wants a quick history and briefing of what the state is of HTML5 today. Good place to look for tips to start to use HTML5 now, too! After finishing the book, I'm pretty excited to give a simple HTML5 website a shot :)
Yevgeniy Kravtsov
Nice primer on HTML5 for those already familiar with previous implementations of hypertext mark-up specs. This is not a tome of thorough reference, nor an introduction for beginners (author lists several resources in the end of the book for those seeking either). This small book (under 90 pages) is designed for experienced developers interested in basic information on what adoption of a new standard would mean for them.

Author starts with brief history of mark-up languages, starting w
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Stephanie
Mar 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful book. It doesn't attempt to teach you HTML from scratch. It's intended for people who've been working with HTML for a long time and just need to know what has changed in HTML5. It's concise, readable, and informative. Best of all, it's funny. Jeremy Keith writes about web design with obvious affection, even when it's exasperating: "Internet Explorer has special needs." "It would be inaccurate to say [the XHTML 2 spec] was going nowhere fast. It was going nowhere very, very sl ...more
Wessam Khalil
Apr 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: computer
I did not spend a lot of time reading this book as it is a very short book. By reading this book, I have revised some of my information regarding HTML5 and its history.

If you are about to read this book, be informed that this book will not teach you how to write HTML mark-ups, and it will not teach you how to write CSS. It will not introduce you to the whole web design world.

This book will give you information around HTML5 history and specification. It is a light reading for experie
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Ben Babcock
I am very excited for HTML5. My experience with web design began in March 2004. I was young(er than I am now), and I decided to make a personal website on GeoCities. It was a gaudy affair that reflected my lack of design skills and made use of notorious elements like . In the years that followed, I learned about web standards and accessibility. Now my websites still reflect a lack of design skills, but at least they're accessible! So I'm happy that HTML5's specifications are being developed with accessibi ...more
Anne
Sep 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: unowned
Note that this is for the original edition; the newest edition is sitting in my shopping cart at A Book Apart.

This book breaks downs a few very important points about HTML5 that other books I've read on the topic do not, and they all involve history. Jeremy Keith explains how we got here, from the beginning with HTML 2.0 through the WHATWG and WC3 kerfuffles to the present (2010) day.

Knowing the history of HTML helps considerably in understanding what decisions were made and why. Understanding
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Jennifer
Jul 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Picking up a coding book, I'm always afraid that I'll hit of boring brick wall of sleep-inducing description and instruction that is impossible to follow. Not only is this book highly readable, and in fact even entertaining, but it also is easy to understand and retain the material. It starts with a background on the birth of HTML5, and uses this description of its history and the philosophy behind it to help explain what HTML5 is doing and why. Along the way it includes suggestions and commenta ...more
Ivy DeWitt
Feb 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: web designers, front end developers, and those interested in learning about accessibility
Shelves: front-end-topics
Version 2 of HTML5 for Web Designers is a short book, but a good overview of the overall changes and improvements HTML5 has made over previous iterations. For those of us interested in diving more into key aspects of HTML5 including the new semantic elements, form validation, etc - this is a great primer to get you up to speed on those topics.

Especially for newer designers and front-end developers who have really only known HTML5, this is a good reference that provides some of the historical ba
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awwsalah
it kind of disappointed me. it's theoretical book but not a practical, not as i expected.
he explain some certain staff in a detailed way, lije like the HTML history.. but when he reached the third chapter he rushed the whole staff quickly, like he's remembering you the script but not to teaching.. maybe this book is not for someone starting web development. i won't recommended this book to newcomers.
Nagham Al Halabi
This book provides a good introduction to html5 and the world of semantics, it's a bit outdated though (this shows mainly in the futuristics tone of the author and the examples given). I liked the short history of HTML5 that was provided at the beginning of the short simple handbook.
Grant Baker
Aug 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A little dated at this point (that's the nature of books on tech) but still an excellent book that encapsulates the purpose of the A Book Apart series—short, descriptive, pragmatic.
Matthew Donaldson
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Outdated by now but still enjoyable and a good history of html.
Fabrício Silva
Jul 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: tech
A good introductory book about HTML5.
Danny de Vries
Aug 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: aba
Especially useful for people who only started developing for the web a couple of years ago. Great primer on how HTML5 came to be.
Dominic Scott
Aug 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written and to the point. A fair amount of prior knowledge is needed to follow well. Looking forward to reading more in the series.
Chad Warner
I found this very short HTML5 primer too shallow. It barely scratches the surface of HTML5, but I suppose that was the intent. I enjoyed the fact that it describes the creation of HTML5 in more detail than other HTML5 books I've read. Keith’s writing style is entertaining, and I laughed out loud a few times. Overall, I preferred Introducing HTML5 (my review) and Teach Yourself Visually HTML5 (I found this very short HTML5 primer too shallow. It barely scratches the surface of HTML5, but I suppose that was the intent. I enjoyed the fact that it describes the creation of HTML5 in more detail than other HTML5 books I've read. Keith’s writing style is entertaining, and I laughed out loud a few times. Overall, I preferred Introducing HTML5 (my review) and Teach Yourself Visually HTML5 (my review).

HTML5 Design Principles
• "Support existing content" and "Do not reinvent the wheel": be backwards compatible with previous versions of HTML
• "Pave the cowpaths": in creating HTML5, WHATWG looked for widespread ways web designers accomplished tasks and codified them.

HTML Elements
• The datalist element is a combination of input and select. You can associate a list of options with an input field. Users can select an option from the list or type a value.
• An input with a type of search behaves the same as an input with a type of text, but browsers might display a search input differently.
• The article element is designed for syndication. Use it for self-contained related content. Ask yourself if you would syndicate the content in a feed. It’s useful for blog posts, news stories, comments, reviews, forum posts, self-contained widgets.
• In an hgroup element, only the first heading contributes to the outline.
• The HTML5 spec advises starting afresh from h1 within each piece of sectioning content.
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Jeff Porter
Oct 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
A useful introduction to the power and the pitfalls embedded in HTML5. The historical synopsis of HTML5 and its predecessors is both succinct and enlightening, and possibly one of the funniest I’ve read.
While Keith expertly handles where to get started, he’s also quick to point out where to get off. Some aspects of HTML5 are not for every browser. Yet. Some still have hoops to jump through ‘in committee’ and others require fallbacks, which are also covered in light detail.
Beyond the
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Matt
Mar 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
HTML5! The latest and greatest specification! Some browsers support some of the specification some of the time. Others are slow to adopt anything. And it's huge! HTML5 is almost a complete re-vamp of the HTML specification. It's purpose is to simplify markup to better represent how the web is actually used. But it's still in flux, and gargantuan besides. How can we possibly start using HTML5 right now?

Such is the question that Jeremy Keith answers in "HTML5 for Web Designers". In it,
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Andrew
Jun 27, 2011 rated it liked it
This is the first eBook that I've read cover-to-cover. The publishers say that they want the books to be short enough to digest on a plane flight from New York to Chicago. (More on their innovative publishing model here.) Their claim holds up. I plowed through this on my iPad before even getting out of bed for coffee one morning. When I was done, I understood all the important elements of HTML5 that distinguish it from previous web standards. But more than that, I was entertained. Keith is a smart des ...more
Corey Vilhauer
Aug 13, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excerpt from "What I've Been Reading - HTML5 for Web Designers."

"As a Web guy whose exposure to HTML and CSS has come exclusively from the routine hacking of free WordPress templates, HTML5 for Web Designers dives into the subject at my level - highlighting the changes and features of code that could change how the Web is organized and developed. Even better, it does so in a way that's akin to the 'spreading the gospel' model of Web talk - 100% devoted to letting the reader understand the code.

Designers ...more
David Hall
Feb 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: coding
I had previously read 'Introducing HTML5 by Bruce Lawson, so I knew the main details and issues surrounding HTML5 implementation. When I heard Jeremy Keith was writing a book, I was excited, as I found him to be an incredibly engaging writer.

This book is a quick breakdown of the most important features of HTML5. What it isn't, is a thorough reference guide.

It is a great introduction for beginners, as it is brief and concise. I'm not entirely sure how much advanced HTML5 u
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Muhammed Mustafa
After reading Jon Ducket's HTML & CSS book, I felt to get more into HTML5 (and css3) to discover more about its tags and features. I decided to read this book. The book was to the point, it had some humor in it.... unfortunately some I couldn't get. There were some moments where I got confused regarding the phrases and terminologies. Some examples (specially in chapter 5) weren't detailed enough to clarify the concepts which also led me to confusions.

This book is useful if you ar
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Rebecca
Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Picking up a coding book, I'm always afraid that I'll hit of boring brick wall of sleep-inducing description and instruction that is impossible to follow. Not only is this book highly readable, and in fact even entertaining, but it also is easy to understand and retain the material. It starts with a background on the birth of HTML5, and uses this description of its history and the philosophy behind it to help explain what HTML5 is doing and why. Along the way it includes suggestions and commenta ...more
Loren
Mar 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: web-design
"HTML5 For Web Designers" by Jeremy Keith was the first book published by A Book Apart and does a good job at setting the tone for this series of useful books from the folks behind A List Apart. Jeremy does a good job at touching on key information such as obsolete tags, accessibility concerns, form enhancements, and semantics. What I was hoping for more of, was how to best begin using HTML5 today. There's a small section at the end of the book called "Using HTML5 Today", but it didn't provide m ...more
G. Jason
Jul 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really decent, quick overview on what's to come with html5. (Finished it in about 2 hours) Covers much of the basics and what we can and cannot do so far. Billed under A Book Apart, "Brief Books for people who make websites.", this book is exactly that. Enough information to et your feet wet and ready to jump in to learn more.

This is also one of the first books on html5 to make it to the market as well.

Nicely designed, however a big quark that drives me a bit bonkers is the spine on the book.
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Nancy Frishberg
Feb 24, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read most of this book, and can comment that
a) the content is very accessible to non-programmers, though
b) knowing something about markup languages in general and the state of the world prior to HTML5 would be helpful
c) the content is largely about reassuring web designers that HTML5 is our friend, and that it simplifies a lot of things by "paving the cowpaths" - and making smart defaults for various tags.

This is not a comprehensive reference guide, nor is i
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Francois Versepuy
Aug 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is perfect if you want to know everything about the new HTML5 tags. It is clear, concise. The strict necessary is here, no blabla.
I also liked the introduction about the history of HTML norms.
Humour is often present in the book, and I have to say that I liked to see humour in a technical subject.
Also be aware that this book presents HTML5 tags ONLY, you will not read a single line about the previous tags (HTML4) nor considerations about block and inline elements or wh
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