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Wireless Markup Languages

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In this article, Paul Wallace outlines the current crop of markup languages that are used for developing i-mode content. He also presents ideas for using simple text and code editors for creating i-mode pages.
This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Compact HTML

Compact HyperText Markup Language (cHTML) is a markup language designed to create Web pages viewable by portable telephone and portable information terminals like PDAs. It was developed by Access, NEC, SONY, Fujitsu, and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., and was proposed to the W3C in 1998.

The cHTML language is a subset HTML version 2.0, 3.2, and 4.0. Since it is based on HTML, developing content for cHTML is very similar to developing for HTML. Compact HTML was designed explicitly for mobile phones and other small appliances that have the following characteristics:

  • Small memory size
  • Low power CPU
  • Reduced display size
  • Restricted color display
  • Limited fonts and text size
  • Restricted input method

In order to accommodate these restricted characteristics, cHTML was designed to be:

  1. Based on W3C Recommendations

    Compact HTML is a subset of HTML, so it is flexible and portable, and there is a large body of developers who can easily jump in and start building applications immediately.

  2. Viewable on a small screen

    Compact HTML takes into account that screen sizes are small and variable; and often limited in the style, size, and type of fonts that are available.

  3. Usable on a mobile handset

    Compact HTML is designed to be used on a device with limited navigation, including four primary keys: Cursor Forward, Cursor Backward, Select, and Back/Stop.

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