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XML – Web Language of the future?


With XML looking set to be the main web language of the not too distant future, TrainingZONE takes a brief look at the terms - HMTL, XML and XHMTL, what they mean and what are their differences – with links to more detailed websites on each.

Most Internet users are by now familiar with the term HMTL or Hypertext Markup Language in full, even though not everyone understands how to use it. In short it is the Web’s main language. However, although HTML is the most successful electronic-publishing language ever invented, it is superficial: in essence, it describes how a Web browser should arrange text, images and push-buttons on a page. HTML's concern with appearances makes it relatively easy to learn, but it also has its costs.

You may now be frequently encountering the term XML - or Extensible Markup Language, which is the Internet’s ‘second generation’ web language. By all accounts XML looks set to replace HMTL as the most popular electronic language. In layman’s terms, ‘We all know that computers are not always too smart, in that they need to be told what to do’ that is what XML is capable of doing. Even though the Internet has the ability to work ‘at the speed of light’, it often plods – this is due in part to HMTL. XML has the ability to take the Internet beyond information delivery to many other kinds of human activity.

Finally you may also have seen the term XHTML used. XHTML is a ‘bridge’ between HTML and XML. It is a way of connecting the ‘old web’ with the ‘new web’. ‘XHTML 1.0 connects the present Web to the future Web, It provides the bridge to page and site authors for entering the structured data, XML world, while still being able to maintain operability with user agents that support HTML 4’ - Tim Berners-Lee, Director W3C World Wide Web Consortium

This article is a very basic introduction to the terms HMTL, XML and XHMTL, for more detailed information visit suggested websites shown:

Introduction to XHMTL with examples

Introduction to XML with examples

Encyclozine – Introduction to XHTML with examples

Kathleen Hopper
IT Training Editor


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