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HTML Essential Training 2012

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A comprehensive overview of the HTML featureset, from the basics of setting up a HTML document to the creation of forms with newer HTML5 inputs. The speaker maintains an even, measured pace throughout the entire series and speaks with a calm, steady voice that should make the material amenable to both those completely new to HTML as well as those looking for a review of HTML's various capabilities.

Although the series touches on some more intermediate intricacies and details, the presentation is targeted mostly towards an audience with very little to no knowledge of HTML. Basic knowledge of development is also not assumed: the basics of text editors and keyboard shortcuts are reviewed in the beginning of the series. Thus, those watching the series as a review of HTML may want to skip some chapters. Despite this focus on beginners, however, the series covers the newest HTML specification, so HTML5 features, such as newer form input types and native video embedding, are also covered.

The speaker demonstrates a high level of knowledge and comfort with the subject matter: he provides a historical context for the HTML specification, describing how it has evolved over time, dispels common myths, including a sobering discussion on over-hyped search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, and also emphasizes the importance of semantics in HTML documents, specially in regards to the newer HTML5 elements.

Some parts of the series are a little uneven: more advanced CSS topics, such as CSS resets and complex pseudoselectors, are introduced with little explanation early in the series. Also, some of the more esoteric aspects of the HTML specification, including ruby and microdata, could have been removed from a purportedly "essential" series. Furthermore, certain techniques and features that are now considered bad practice are unnecessarily introduced, including deprecated HTML attributes used for styling (e.g., align) and image maps. Finally, a few stretches of the series (the first few table videos and the HTML5 data elements videos) would not load for me.

Overall, this is a wonderful series that would be useful for both complete beginners to HTML as well as more experienced developers wanting a refresher.

Note: The series is covering a quickly evolving specification and so certain parts of the series may contain outdated information. For example, the hgroup element is no longer part of the HTML specification.

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