Liveblogging: HTML5 – Confoo Keynote

What is confoo? It is the sequel to the PHP Quebéc Conference (2003 – 2009). This year PHP Quebec decided to team up with Montreal-Python, W3Quebéc and OWASP Montréal to produce confoo.

And now, on to Mark Pilgrim of Google speaking on HTML5.

1991 – HTML 1
1994 – HTML 2
1995 – Netscape discovers web, ruins it
1996 – CSS1 + JavaScript
1996 – Microsoft discovers web, ruins it
1997 – HTML4 + EMCAScript1
1998 – CSS2 + EMCAScript2 + DOM1
2000 – XHTML1 + EMCAScript3 + DOM2
2001 – XHTML 1.1
[long break!]
2009 – HTML 5 + ECMA5 + CSS 2.1

HTML5 is not a spec, it’s a marketing term. It’s really HTML5 + CSS3 + JavaScript. and are both real websites that give different answers to the question “is HTML 5 ready?”

HTML started as a semantic language (until Netscape came along).

New elements (html tags) that do not do anything – they are for semantic use only:

<header> <footer>
<aside> (pull quotes and such)
<time> (datetime markup)
<mark> (marking up runs of text)
<figure> <figcaption>

Instead of “div class=_____” use these tags….for example:

    <h2>page title</h2>
    <h3>page subtitle</h3>

  <ul> Navigation......


Caveat: This doesn’t work in IE but there is a workaround…..

This can help blind people navigate better….and bots too!

“Google is just another blind web user with 7 million friends”

Web forms 2.0
To make a slider from 0-50:

<input type='range' mix='0' max='50' value='0'></input>

To use autofocus:

<input autofocus>

(works in 3 browsers)

Talking about blind users again: “Focus tracking is VERY important if you can’t see. You really need to know where on the page you are, if you start typing what will happen.”

Placeholder text — in a text box, that light text that goes away when you click:

<input type='text' placeholder='click here and this will disappear'>

(works in 2 browsers)

New input types
These are semantic types, do different things in different browsers

<input type='email'> (on the iphone you get a different keyboard, by default you just get a textfield, so these things degrade gracefully if the browser does not support the feature)
<input type='url'> (a browser like <A HREF="">Opera</A> can validate a URL for you instead of you doing it yourself!)
<input type='datetime'> (and pickers are tedious)
<input type='file' multiple> (multiple files without using flash!)

For all the inputs HTML5 supports and which browsers support them (Opera is leading the way) search for “HTML5 input support”

ARIA = “accessible rich internet applications”. Alt-text is technology that’s long behind. ARIA does stuff like making tree views accessible. For example, right now with a tree view you have to tab through each item, which is a pain. With code like this:

<ul id='tree1' role='tree' tabindex='0' aria-labelledby='label_1'>
  <li role='treeitem' tabindex='-1' aria-expanded='true'>Fruits </li>
    <li role='group'>
      <li role='treeitem' tabindex='-1'>Oranges</li>
      <li role='treeitem' tabindex='-1'>Pineapples</li>

….keyboard users can tab to the treeview itself, then use arrow keys to navigate and spacebar to select. This makes selecting an item at the end of a tree view much easier, and also makes it easy to move beyond the tree view without having to press Tab a million times.

Use your favorite search engine for “ARIA accessibility” to learn more.

Mark threw this image up on the screen:

(image from – on that site you can buy this coffee mug or a T-shirt with the design)

Web fonts finally work in CSS3 – you can use more than Times, Courier, Arial, and occasionally Helvetica. This works EVERYWHERE – Chrome, IE, Firefox, Opera, Safari, etc. Well, it’s true that they all use it, but they all have different fonts they support. Read Bulletproof font face for tips on how to get the font you want no matter what browser is used (yes, even IE).

Opacity is easy [author’s note – it’s just the “opacity” element, see examples at].

Rounded corners are EASY – Mark’s slide passed too fast for me, so I grabbed an example from

.box {
  border-radius: 1.6em;

Gradients are easy [author’s note — looks like you need webkit, there’s examples at]

To test CSS3 stuff, use – “This element will receive inline changes as you edit the CSS rules on the left.”

[Author’s note — while searching I found which is definitely a “must have”.]

A canvas is a blank slate where you can draw whatever you want, use the canvas tag and id, width and height attributes, everything else is javascript. Pretty awesome. [Author’s note — Mark had examples but I did not have time to capture them. I did find a nice tutorial at]

Video with no flash! YouTube has HTML5 integration. Here’s sample code of how to do movies in HTML5:

<video src='movie.ogv' controls></video>
<video src='movie.ogv' loop></video>
<video src='movie.ogv' preload='none'></video>  -- don't preload the movie
<video src='movie.ogv' preload='auto'></video>
<video src='movie.ogv' autoplay></video> -- if you don't have this you don't do evil autoplay....

Multimedia is in the DOM and responds to CSS effects, such as reflection:

<video src='movie.ogv' loop style='webkit-box-reflect: below 1px;'></video>

(this code might be wrong, the slide flipped fast)

Of course the problem — codecs. Right now, .ogv and .mp4 (h264).

Audio inline too, same problem — only .oga and .mp3:

<audio src ='podcast.oga' controls></audio>

Geolocation is a real site, go to it to get the answer.
Geolocation demos — very much the same, find your location and display it. Simple but cool.

Cache manifest
Get everything you need for offline usage…

<html manifest='another-sky.manifest'>


search for “google for mobile HTML5 series” – good series of articles on using this stuff.

HTML 5 has much more
Local storage
Web workers
Web sockets (2way connections, like raw tcp/ip cxns over the web)
3D canvas (webgl)
Microdata (enhanced semantics)
Desktop notifications
Drag and Drop

Learn more:

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