1. A Brief History of HTML

HTML history has a long way back when the internet was invented after the 90s to create HTML5 documents. The founder of HTML language, Tim Berners Lee developed the HTML at CERN Labs in 1991. The notion got popular because he proposed the idea of sharing the documents between researchers and scientists comprising a hypertext system. Also, the medium to share the documents with each other was the internet. Therefore, the history of HTML markup began to develop in this simplest manner and the passage of time evolved it into modern HTML5.

Tutorial Contents:

  1. A Brief History of HTML5
  2. Background History of HTML5
  3. History of Browsers
  4. HTML Versions History

Following is the compact information concerning the History of HTML:

Website: www.w3.org/
Founder: Tim Berners-Lee
Opensource: Yes
File Extension: .html or .htm
Developed By: W3C and WHATWG
Initial Release: 1991
Latest Release: December 2017
Extended From: SGML
Extended To: XHTML

2. Background of HTML

The HTML markup language came into existence gradually with trials and tests. There are three basic phases that took part in evolving the HTML5 language.

  1. Concept Behind Release
  2. Initial Release
  3. Initial Usage

2.1. Concept Behind HTML Release

  • Importantly, there were numerous markup languages at that time.
  • But the concept behind HTML was to make it universally adaptable and acceptable.
  • Also, making it accessible for every browser and every user.
  • Moreover, the markup was initially designed to manipulate simple static web pages.
  • Later, it revolutionized into providing some more vibrant, meaningful, and styled content.

2.2. Initial HTML Release

  • Initially, the HTML founder Tim Berners Lee initially published its description as "HTML TAGS in 1991 over the internet.
  • Originally, that description included 18 tags and got a strong influence from SGML.
  • Therefore, HTML is said to be extended from SGML.
  • Later, that description set the foundation of modernized HTML.
  • Moreover, the most advanced and stable version of HTML is HTML5.
  • Its creation began by WHATWG in 2004.
  • Later, it became the partner with W3C in its delivery and was completed on 28 October 2014.
  • Although there are rumors about the HTML6 release date, it is not affirmed.

2.3. Initial HTML Use

  • Moving further, the HTML history reveals that it was the official language of world-wide-web.
  • It helped the scientists to produce their research and journals.
  • Further, it enabled them to share their documents.
  • Also, the features of HTML include the facility to link documents with each other with the use of hyperlinks.

3. History of Browsers

Soon after the invention of this super cool markup language, many companies began to create web browsers. The intention was to display the markup correctly and this created a war-like scene between the corporations. Thus, incorporating new HTML features in their browser day by day. This is the thrilling portion to learn and study in the HTML history chapter. The browser formation has two distinct stages.

  1. Proprietary Tags
  2. Standardization of the Tags

3.1. Proprietary HTML Tags

  • At this stage, some companies developed their proprietary HTML tags besides browser creation and upgrading similar to webkit proprietary extensions.
  • Also, these HTML tags served as their proprietary tags since they worked only in their browsers.
  • For instance, the <marquee>Some Text</marquee> tag would only work in Internet explorer.
  • Likewise, the <blink>Some Text</blink> would work for the Firefox browser merely.
  • Resultantly, the markup developers got a new problem relating to their markup.
  • Because their HTML code would work for one browser accurately and produce odd results for another because of proprietary tags.

3.2. Standardization of HTML Tags

  • In order to cope with the proprietary tags, an organization W3C worked hard to standardize the markup.
  • Thus, it released several HTML versions to help the web developer and coders to get out of this mess.
  • Therefore, W3C timely released HTML 2.0, HTML 3.0, HTML 4.01 and now most latest version HTML5 and hope so, soon it will release HTML6.
  • Perhaps, HTML6 may come with many cool features and certainly, the markup will be minimalistic.
  • This is how the history of HTML versions is progressing.
  • Additionally, this standardized markup practice makes it adaptable to all browsers defeating the problem of proprietary tags.

3.3. Popular Browsers

The following are some of the most popular browsers that entirely adapt to the HTML5 standards.

Browser Company Description
WorldWideWeb(Nexus) CERN This is the first browser in the history of the internet. Tim Berners Lee developed it as an open-source project to assist the scientists at Cern laboratories and discontinued it in 1994.
Internet Explorer Microsoft Inc Microsoft created this graphical interfaced browser in 1995. It has a series of browsers and is incorporated into the Windows operating system as the default browser. Moreover, it has the latest form as Microsoft Edge.
Google Chrome Google Inc This is the most popular browser that came into existence in 2008. Google Chrome has a huge community of users. Also, its popularity is due to its fast speed, sleek interface, countless extensions, add-ons, and malware filtering.
Mozilla Firefox Mozilla Foundation This foundation developed it as Firefox later named Mozilla Firefox. Mozilla Firefox has various features that give flexibility to the user to perform various tasks. Also, it gives a huge add-on platform to assist the users. Further, the browser also provides malware filtering. It is also one of the most popular browsers today.
Opera Opera Softwares It was originally developed by Telenor as a research assistant in 1994. It is one of the top browsers and most popular on mobiles due to its speed and performance.
Safari Apple Inc The users of the iPhone and Mac get in touch mostly with the safari browser. It has fast speed and the best content delivery system. Apple developed it in 2003.
UC Browser Alibaba Group As of 2018, the UC browser is the most popular mobile browser. Developed in 2004 and covered a large marketplace speedily. It provides the best performance for mobile users. It is best known for its speed and usability.

Do you know?

In 1995, the Netscape browser spread all over the internet and was the most popular browser.

4. HTML Versions History

Following is the list of different HTML versions that we witnessed throughout the History of HTML5. This timeline covers all HTML versions along with their release date till HTML5. Lastly, the HTML6 release date is yet not confirmed.

HTML Versions Timeline


Coming soon...


December 14, 2017


November 1, 2016


October 28, 2014


December 24, 1999


December 18, 1997


January 14, 1997


November 24, 1995



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