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Part I: Applying Dynamic HTML > The State of the Art

Chapter 1. The State of the Art

It wasn't all that long ago that becoming a web page authoring wizard required little more than an understanding of a few dozen Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) tags, and perhaps modest experience with a scanner and a graphics program to generate a corporate logo image file. Armed with that knowledge, you could start an Internet design business or become the online content guru at a Fortune 500 company. Ah, those were the good old days...about two years ago.

The stakes are much higher now. The hobby phase is over. The Internet is big business. Competition for visitor "hits" is enormous, as it becomes more and more difficult to get your site noticed, much less bookmarked. Sensing that the authoring world wanted more out of HTML than a poor imitation of the printed page, the web browser makers and the Internet standards bodies have been expanding the capabilities of web pages at a feverish pace. These changes are allowing us to make our pages more dynamic—pages that can "think and do" on their own, without much help from the server once they have been loaded in the browser. But at the same time, what we authors have to do to make our new, fancy content play on all the browsers is constantly changing.


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