Blog articles

Ask 3: Why you should learn HTML5

By Susan Simkins    |    February 12, 2018

If you’re ready to master a new technology, it pays to hear from someone who knows. In our Ask 3 series, we interview an expert from our worldwide network of authors to help you learn about the most important technologies today. In our last post of the series, web developer Susan Simkins answers 3 questions about HTML5.

HTML is at the core of modern websites and applications, making it essential to master before learning other programming languages like JavaScript, Java or CSS. Languages grow and evolve as needs change, and HTML5 is no exception. Features are continually added to allow for the development of robust websites and applications like offline storage and audio/video.


What's the most important thing happening in HTML5 right now?

The HTML 5.2 specification just reached recommendation level as of December 2017. This means any new HTML5 features in the specification are officially recommended for implementation by both user agents (like web browsers) and web developers. One great thing about the 5.2 specification is its additional features that can improve accessibility. 

For example, creating accessible dialog boxes is always a challenge and the new <dialog> element allows developers to create native dialog boxes. Several features were also added to help web application developers, like the ability to have multiple <main> elements and support for <style> elements outside of a document’s <head>.


What's an adjacent skill/technology that complements HTML5?

CSS is always the butter to HTML’s bread. There are many great things happening in CSS right now, especially in terms of layout. CSS Grid allows for native column-and-row-based layouts, without the need of a framework. Web designers and developers have been wanting this for years, which makes its implementation really exciting.


What's the future of HTML5?

Short term, the W3C plans to release a Recommendation in 2018, meaning we should see some new elements and improvements with 5.3. Following updates to the WHATWG Living Standard is a good way to get a pulse on what is being added and removed. Long term, HTML will need to evolve to meet the modern needs of web application developers and complex technologies like VR

HTML is the best place to start learning if you’re interested in building websites or applications. As one of the most fundamental building blocks of the web, you can’t go wrong with a mastery of the basics. Start by getting your HTML5 IQ, and begin your learning journey. 

About the author

Susan Simkins is a web design tutor for Pluralsight. Growing up, Susan was both a passionate artist as well as a computer tech aficionado. When she discovered the world of web development, she found that she could meld those two passions together into something amazing. Soon after, Susan began devoting herself to building beautiful and functional web content for businesses and nonprofits. It was through those experiences Susan developed a fluency for web coding languages. Since then, Susan has developed a desire to teach others the mysteries of web development. Through her work here at Pluralsight, she aims to build up a deep and expansive library of web development training. If you're just starting out with development or are already comfortable with the essential computing languages, let Susan free your mind to what’s possible in the world of web development. Go ahead, take the red pill and see how deep the rabbit-hole goes.