HTML is one of the most popular languages across the Internet. Every web page that you browse (including this one) was built with HTML, along with many other programming languages. While it may not have glitz of some more popular programming languages, HTML is a base skill that every programmer will learn. In fact, many beginning coders will end up using HTML during their first projects. But what is HTML used for?
History of HTML
Before we can dive into the uses of HTML, it’s only fair that we explain how this all started.
HTML or Hypertext Markup Language was first developed in 1989 by Tim Berners-Lee. As a worker at CERN, Berners-Lee’s first major breakthrough came nine years earlier in 1980. That year, he proposed and prototyped ENQUIRE, a hypertext program that would allow CERN researchers to use and share documents electronically.
After years of adopting his first idea, Berners-Lee developed HTML and wrote the software for the browser and server in 1990.
It’s important to mention that HTML draws from the standards of SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language), which was developed back in the 1960s. HTML has come a long way since the 90s, with many updates being made to the original language. Currently, the standard for the HTML language is HTML 5.2, which was developed in 2017.
What Is HTML Used For?
While we’ve referenced this already, it’s important to understand the scope of HTML. Without it, web pages wouldn’t work the way that they do. In short, HTML code formats the text, images, and other media that make up a web page. The language communicates with the computer using a series of attributes and elements inside opening tags (<>) and closing tags that use angle brackets and a forward slash (</>). As mentioned above, HTML has evolved over time. The language now enables web pages to host videos, sound, and more.
Now that you’ve gotten to know the history of HTML and all of its important uses, you’re probably wondering how you can learn it. Thankfully, HTML is a very straightforward and simple language to learn. HTML is known as one of the “gateway” languages to coding. Once prospective coders have mastered the simplicity of HTML, many go on to learn more complex programming languages.