In case you missed this while preparing for the Mayan end of the world on Dec. 21, 2012, the W3C announced that the specifications for HTML5 are complete.
This is, as they say, a big deal.
With the recent proliferation of smart phones and tablets, running different flavors of several operating systems, it has of late been difficult to write an interesting piece of code that will run everywhere. Flash was, for a while, the de facto standard for rich content that could run inside the browser, but now even Adobe has announced that Flash is reaching end of life. The burning questions is what would take its place?
The answer, for some time now, has been HTML 5. The problem was, it isn't done.
This all changed on 12/17/12 (no doubt the schedule was governed by the emotional need to complete such a big project before the EOTW so at least in the apocalyptic aftermath we could find some peace). By publishing final specifications, W3C is telling developers all over the world that they can go ahead and start coding HTML5 apps without having to chew their nails wondering if they working against a moving target.
Of course, some notable companies have already jumped on this bandwagon even before the final specs were published. And even though all the bells and whistles haven't been implemented yet, there's enough there there to keep people occupied for quite a while to come.
Why should you care? You can read more here, but in a nutshell, if you migrate an app from, say VB6 to HTML5, which is a more modern platform, that application can run well on a desktop (using a browser), a tablet, or a smart phone. Basically where you have a network and a browser the application can run. And by refactoring the code to take advantage of model view controller achitecture, it can look good and run efficiently on all three platforms without having to redo everything.
If this sounds interesting, click on the button below to get started moving your legacy code to the platform of the future. Since the world didn't end after all, I guess we all have to get back to work.