With all the whizzbangs of canvas and multimedia, the Ooh!s of the History API and the Aah!s of Appcache, the 30 new elements in HTML5 are often overlooked by developers coming to terms with what's new in the HTML Hood.

But semantics aren't the boring old comfortable cardigan in your developer wardrobe - they're the studded leather codpiece around which the rest of your Mighty HTML Warrior's armour is built.

We'll look at how the new HTML elements came about, note problems with their current specifications, then wonder whether those problems are actually features rather than bugs. We'll also consider the WHATWG's penchant for "teleological semantics" and, back in cardigan mode, propose a middle ground.

There will be no Turkish dancing videos.

Slides and transcript available on fronteers.nl/congres/2011/sessions/html5-semantics-bruce-lawson

Loading more stuff…

Hmm…it looks like things are taking a while to load. Try again?

Loading videos…