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HTML5 for Web Designers

(A Book Apart #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  3,157 ratings  ·  178 reviews
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 the power of HTML5 in today’s browsers?

In this brilliant and entertaining user’s guide, Jeremy Keith cuts to the chase, with
Paperback, 87 pages
Published May 4th 2010 by A Book Apart
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Don't Make Me Think by Steve KrugHTML5 for Web Designers by Jeremy KeithJavaScript by David FlanaganThe Art and Science of CSS by Cameron AdamsDesigning with Web Standards by Jeffrey Zeldman
Web Development
76 books — 55 voters
Responsive Web Design by Ethan MarcotteDesigning for Emotion by Aarron WalterHTML5 for Web Designers by Jeremy KeithMobile First by Luke WroblewskiCSS3 For Web Designers by Dan Cederholm
A Book Apart
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Community Reviews

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 ·  3,157 ratings  ·  178 reviews

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Graham Herrli
Jan 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: design-related
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 HTML5.

The book is the f
Jul 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
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) through 6 (Web F
Oct 19, 2010 rated it it was ok
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
Caitlin (Ayashi)
Jul 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
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 :) ...more
Yevgeniy Kravtsov
May 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: web-development, html
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 with SGML up
Mar 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
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 experienced web des
Kara 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 ...more
Sep 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
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
Jul 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
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
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
May 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: web-programming
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. ...more
Fabrício Silva
Jul 13, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tech
A good introductory book about HTML5.
Grant Baker
Aug 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
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. ...more
Danny de Vries
Aug 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
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.
Matthew Donaldson
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Outdated by now but still enjoyable and a good history of html.
Dominic Scott
Aug 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
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.
Mar 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Nice work
Anna Kieu
Mar 24, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This book does an excellent job of explaining the fundamentals and theory of web design. See more:
Chad Warner
Mar 13, 2013 rated it liked it
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 back
Jeff Porter
Oct 19, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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 interesting
Mar 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
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, Jeremy intr
Jun 27, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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 sma ...more
Corey Vilhauer
Aug 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
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.

David Hall
Feb 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
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 users will get out of it,
Mar 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
Muhammed Mustafa
Jan 16, 2016 rated it liked it
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 are already have k
G. Jason
Jul 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
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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