HTML 4.0

HTML 4.0 was the final version of the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) before the Extensible Markup Language (XHTML) and remains the set of markup on which most large Web sites today are based.

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HTML 4.0 was the final version of the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) before the Extensible Markup Language (XHTML) and remains the set of markup on which most large Web sites today are based. Like all HTML levels, HTML 4.0 was the official "recommendation" of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), the group that suggests industry standards for the Web.

Among new features introduced in HTML 4.0 were:

  • The cascading style sheet, the ability to control Web page content at multiple levels
  • The ability to create richer forms
  • Support for frames (which is already supported by the major browsers)
  • Enhancements for tables that make it possible to use captions to provide table content for Braille or speech users
  • The capability to manage pages so that they can be distributed in different languages

In practice, the two leading browsers, Netscape and Internet Explorer, support HTML 4.0 somewhat differently or offer non-standard approaches. These require Web developers that use more advanced features to create pages for each browser and send the appropriate pages to the user.

This was first published in April 2005

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