I had pre-ordered this book and received it yesterday – it took me just over an hour (the duration of my commute into NYC) to zip through it. Based on this, my quick review.
The book is a slim 86 pages. Given the amount of detail in the HTML5 spec, this may seem lightweight. In fact the author does spend the first 2 (of only 6) chapters discussing the history and process behind the creation of this spec – which was unsettling. BUT…. once you get to Chap 3 (Rich Media) through 6 (Web Forms 2.0, Semantics and Using HTML 5 Today), you immediately derive a benefit from the brevity.
I view this book as an HTML5 buffet. You get a quick taste of all the different flavors and features that make the spec so compelling to web designers — but with sufficient tools and pointers for those who want a longer ‘dinner’ on the aspects of primary interest.
The key takeways for me:
- HTML5 favors practice over theory and, as the author puts it, “paves the cowpaths” rather than trying to forge a new road that will require a new learning curve from web designers.
- Transparency tops lock-in. This should make rich media content easier to search, index and manipulate by not only making semantics visible but making every interaction with that content observable to the application.
- Adoption is quite risk-free. While browser support is not yet ubiquitous, the author explains a few ways in which designers can get to evolve their web applications while still playing nice with browsers that are yet to catch up.
Summary: Loved the buffet. Ready for a week’s worth of dinners