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HTML4 <--> HTML5 Question


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I post regularly on forums and blogs that allow HTML in the post but of course there is no access to CSS and anything "fancy" (inline CSS type things) is stripped. Things like border widths, coloring, object with, _blank are allowed and so on. Sometimes I forget the sytax or even wording of formatting I have used in the past and try to look it up. So many sites that I have used in the past now say, "not used for HTML 5" and then do not give any reference to the old command.


Is this to say that documents using HTML4 will not be recognized? Most recently I was doing a post on a closed WordPress blog. I wanted buffering around a photo using the traditional table method, line widths and colors, and cell background coloring. Everything I researched gave me how to do with CSS. I'm not going to tear apart a WordPress site that regularly switches themes and each post and some pages have custom elements just to hard code the CSS. To top it off, this is a multisite which, if you are not familiar with WordPress, means one base set of web instructions and database form the foundation for many "web sites" (in my case) each of a different theme and design elements. Some are out of the box, some highly tweaked. And yes, I know how to make child themes.


So, does the use of HTML5 mean all the posts on blogs and forums will need to be updated and what happens to those that happily use old-style formatting which does exactly what is needed and desired and not have the more modern inline scripting that is not allowed sometimes. (or, for old fogeys as I, harder to remember)



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You're allowed to use whichever HTML version you like when you build a website. The version of HTML that you are using is decided by which <!DOCTYPE> declaration you're using. HTML 4 will continue to be supported for a very long time. I would estimate no less than 10 years.


Using tables for layout and HTML presentational attributes was already discouraged long before HTML 5 was out. It's just best practices, which are just suggestions to make your site accessible to everybody. Failure to follow best practices doesn't mean browsers will reject your page, it just means you may be alienating some of your site visitors by making the page difficult or impossible for them to view it.


If a content management system like Wordpress is preventing you from using HTML in blog posts and comments it's only to prevent you from messing up a website that could possibly belong to somebody else.

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