In anticipation of HTML 5

I have a feeling that HTML5 might not get everyone excited but it should.  At least a little bit.  Before I explain why you should get excited, I’ll briefly explain what HTML5 is.  HTML (HyperText Markup Language) in simplest terms is the language behind the webpage, you don’t see it when you view a webpage but it’s there. If you’d like a more detailed understanding of HTML and HTML5 have a browse through the links below:

Now for why you should get excited: HTML5 has a new part of its language which enables video to be shown in browser without any additional software e.g. Flash, Quicktime, Windows Media Player.  There are some details about this still to be thrashed out by the W3 Consortium mainly which format of video will be used as it needs to work across all browsers (e.g. Chrome, Internet Explorer, FireFox, Safari).

But, if this does happen, it will make it easier for video to be included in websites and so in the content that is on websites e.g. OERs (Visit OTTER for more information on Open Educational Resources), teaching and learning material etc.  Rather than having to provide multiple video file formats and video player options, the video will play directly in the browser without the need for the user to download any additional software or to keep updating their software.  While there will still be issues of file size and storage, easily embedded video in a browser will hopefully enable easier addition of creative, open, educational video resources.  

Emma Davies
Learning Technologist

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