Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) enables you to mark up text so that it canfunction as hypertext on the Web. The term markup comes from printing; editorsmark up manuscript pages with funny-looking symbols that tell the printer how toprint the page. HTML consists of its own set of funny-looking symbols that tell Webbrowsers how to display the page. These symbols, called elements, include the onesneeded to create hyperlinks.
HTML and HTTP were both invented by Tim Berners-Lee, who was then working as acomputer and networking specialist at a Swiss research institute. He wanted to givethe Institute’s researchers a simple markup language, which would enable them toshare their research papers via the Internet. Berners-Lee based HTML on StandardGeneralized Markup Language (SGML), an international standard for marking up text
for presentation on a variety of physical devices.
By 1996, many Web experts were worried that HTML standards were spiraling out of control. The newly founded World Wide Consortium, hoping to keep at least some kind of standard in place, tried to standardize existing practices, including the use of presentation and structure.