Will HTML5 replace all client-side languages?

The rise of HTML5 over the last few years has really shaken up the traditional (and fragmented) world of client-side languages. We’re seeing the decline of traditional code-based languages in favour of a simpler and faster framework. We’re seeing the end of IT departments and software teams and the rise of fast-deployment development platforms such as WordPress.

But who really cares?

You might argue it doesn’t matter … and on the face of it that might be true. After all, unless you’re a techy why should it matter?

But is does

In fact, it’s really important. The move to HTML5 has far reaching effects on almost everything we use in the computing world.

  • Mobile development. The move from dedicated apps to native HTML5 or hybrid applications will drive down the cost of developing in the mobile space and increase the reach of the applications developed. More for less is difficult to counteract.
  • Content management. This used to be a category, a type of web-site build – it’s now the de-rigeur way to approach all new web development. The rise and domination of the sector by WordPress has made this a one-horse race – for good or evil.
  • Modern Marketing. To get and stay ahead requires an agile approach and ultra-short development cycles with many iterations. HTML5 is faster and easier to prototype due to a wider skillbase and lower cost of resourcing.
  • Democratisation of coding. A grandiose way of saying that traditional programming is dead and the new creative advances are coming from non-programmers, who typically know a little bit of HTML. Learning the HTML environment takes weeks, not years as it did to learn heavyweight languages.
  • Death of legacy. The old world (pre-2009) relied on client-side languages such as Flash, Java and Silverlight. They are falling away quickly, as organisations move to remove them all together (grown 50%), kill flash (down by 25%) and reducing the reliance on bespoke Javascript.

Its fair to say that WordPress development plays a major part in a lot of these trends but that’s no reason to ignore it, in fact it’s arguable that the rise of WordPress is driven by these trends. HTML5 is also becoming the norm for web developers as they are driven to support a wider range of devices and browsers.

Want to get involved? You don’t need to pay thousands and pounds and take evening classes for years. Start with the excellent Code Academy and focus on a simple web development framework such as WordPress.