Before you decide to learn HTML you need to know what you can do with it. HTML stands for “Hyper Text Markup Lanugage” and it is the language of the World Wide Web. So, in short, you use HTML to build web pages. But there is more to it than that.

HTML Helps Format Your Page Contents

With HTML, you can add:

  • paragraphs of text
  • lists (both numbered and buletted)
  • tables
  • quotations
  • headlines

You can also add links in your documents to lead readers to other web pages. And add images to make your pages more visually interesting. Plus, HTML provides form elements you can use to add interactivity to your website.

HTML Lets You Describe the Page Contents

Beyond just formatting, HTML describes the contents of a web page so that both humans and computers can read it. You can define text as emphasized or as a unit of time or even legal small print. Some of these descriptions will result in appearance changes as well. For instance, most emphasized text is bold and most small print is small. But with HTML you have defined that text as semantically small print, and so a program could later come along and collect all the small print on your documents and compile it into a whole new document.

Why Write HTML by Hand Instead of With an Editor?

There are many good web editors available that will let you write web pages without ever even looking at the HTML. So why is it a good idea to learn HTML?

  • By knowing the HTML you can fix problems more readily, because you know what can cause various problems on a web page.
  • Knowing HTML means you can use almost any editor, you are not limited to ones that don’t show you HTML.
  • Knowing HTML is a skill that you can use in your job.
  • Knowing HTML makes it easier to learn other web languages like CSS and JavaScript.

What to Do with HTML?—Anything You Want To!

After you’ve started learning HTML, you will find that it is a very flexible language. You can build web pages that do many different things.There are web pages on almost anything you can think of. Your only limit is your imagination. And they are all written in HTML.

Many websites also use PHP which is Hypertext Preprocessor which is a scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML.  There is a lot of popular web-based programs that us PHP, such as WordPress.

HTML and PHP work hand in hand and if you are going to take the tie to learn HTML I suggest you learn PHP as well.  The best thing about using PHP is that it is extremely simple for a newcomer, but offers many advanced features for a professional programmer.

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