The Different Kinds of HTML
on March 27, 2012
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Most anyone who has been in the web design industry for more than a few minutes knows what HTML is, or has at least heard of it. It’s a language that people throw around a bit loosely these days and some people might not even realize there are slight variations of HTML, such as XHTML, CHTML, and DHTML
C-HTML, or Compact Hyper Text Markup Language, was a language used on first generation smart phones and PDAs. C-HTML was a simpler form of HTML required to work with devices containing hardware restrictions like no keyboard or mouse, low memory, and low powered CPUs with little to no storage.
XHTML is a less flexible version of HTML, which is an application of the Standard Generalized Markup Language, or SGML. However, XHTML is an application of XML, which is a more restricted version of SGML and are able to be parsed with XML. HTML uses a HTML-specific parser that is much less restrictive than the XML version.
There are a few syntax differences between HTML and XHTML. XML requires that all elements are closed, either by a self closing tag or a separate closing tag that follows the content within the element. For example <img src=”image.jpg” /> would be a self closing tag and <h1>This is my header</h2> would be a separate closing tag. XML is also case-sensitive when it comes to the names of attributes and elements, unlike HTML. Along with syntactical differences there are also behavioral differences, most notably being that an incorrect tag structure in XML will cause the processing of a document to abort.
DHTML allows a developer to embed a news ticker in their site that will automatically keep itself up to date with the most recent news headlines without requiring the viewer to refresh the page. You may also use Dynamic HTML in the navigation of your site to create drop-down menus and rollover buttons.
Below is an example of how to create this very basic drop-down menu with DHTML
<h3>Drop down menu</h3>
<td onmouseover=”showmenu(‘contact’)” onmouseout=”hidemenu(‘contact’)”>
<a href=”#”>Contact</a><br />
<table id=”contact” width=”120″>
<tr><td class=”menu”><a href=”#”>Phone</a></td></tr>
<tr><td class=”menu”><a href=”#”>Email</a></td></tr>
<tr><td class=”menu”><a href=”#”>Mailing Address</a></td></tr>
<tr><td class=”menu”><a href=”#”>Office Address</a></td></tr>