HTML5 Logo Animated…in Flash


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A friend of mine put together this animation of the new HTML5 logo animated — with irony — in Flash. It got a lot of chuckles on Twitter so I thought I’d link to it here for good measure. (Anecdotally, it’s apparently crashed more than one user’s Web browser out there. Perfect.) See the animation here.

Thinking more about the logo itself, I’ve become increasingly perplexed about why the W3C and its designers, Ocupop, decided to make the “HTML” and the “5” two distinct elements, rather than joining them together. To date, the people behind this specification have gone through reasonably significant efforts to make it clear that the proper style for citing it is as a single unit, sans space. It’s “HTML5,” not “HTML 5,” right? Am I missing something? (I’ll admit, I’m not as fascinated by the narrative around these specifications as a lot of designers are.) Anyway, if that singularity is what they’re going for, it seems like an error in judgment to design a logo that doesn’t acknowledge it, that even suggests that the two elements can be broken apart.

  1. Great point, I have been wondering the same thing. If they could improve the aged w3c logo, that would be awesome.

  2. Chris: If only. My semantic complaints here aside, I was just happy to see that the HTML5 logo is a genuinely good piece of graphic design. The W3C, for all the good they have done, has not been known for that.

  3. I think the “HTML5” version pertains to circumstances where it is written out as text. This version of HTML is indeed the fifth one, and there are no rules about bringing attention to that. Speaking theoretically, one could say that the logo is written out as “HTML5”, only communicated differently.

  4. You’re probably right that the HTML & the 5 should be together, even more so because there used to be a spec called HTML 5 (with space), that no longer exists.

    But this logo has plenty of other, bigger problems:

    First, the logo’s license allows anyone to modify it however they want. I’m all for openness, but this seems to defeat the point of a logo, i.e. a unified identity.

    More importantly, the logo actually confuses new developers about what HTML5 is and how it relates to other technologies. HTML5 is a markup language, like HTML4—nothing more. Yet the HTML5 logo site uses the term as an umbrella for a whole host of standards, including SVG (a vector image format), CSS3 (a styling language), WOFF (a font format), and a bunch of Javascript APIs. This confusion has already prompted one group involved in making HTML5 to rename it simply “HTML” on their site.

    Finally, do we really think this logo will do any good? Users will probably just take it to mean that the site is “better” somehow, but they won’t know how unless you bother to describe it to them—which makes for bad UX. So marketers may latch onto the term and that’s about it. And even that will probably go out of fashion quickly because, if it ever caught on, every site would simply make itself “HTML5” by adding one line of code that satisfies the ridiculously broad definition but doesn’t change a thing about the user’s actual experience.

  5. @ ethan
    Does HTML’s logo license actually defeats the point of the logo, if the idea is to communicate the company’s objectives and brand? Since HTML’s goal is to create an open web, I would think the logo’s license brings the logo one step further. It reminds me of how Google treats their logo with many creative variations. Not many companies go this route and is considered a sin. Very curious on its impact across its usage on other websites, even between marketeers. However I think HTML5 is suitable against HTJCSML (hypertext javascript cascading stylesheet markup language)?

    @ Mike Mai
    I’ve seen the darkside of HTML5 here: Link

  6. @Jeff Well, the difference between Google’s logo and the HTML5 logo is that Google’s efforts are centralized—the company has complete control over the logo’s variation; for the HTML5 logo, it’s the wild west. Whether one can build a strong brand with less central control is an interesting question (and one Khoi’s written about). To me, it’s still a dubious proposition and the best the HTML5 logo can hope for is that most people just take it as is.

    And yes, as a marketing buzzword, HTML5 is probably better than HTJCSML, but I don’t think we really need either.

  7. @mike Mai
    Though it’s clearly a throwback to the 80s style decepticon symbol while playfully spoofing the new HTML5 logo, it brought back and reminded me of that young child that once played with these robots. While the HTML4 logo tries but fails.

  8. Well the HTML5 version of the logo only worked in Chrome. It crippled my CPU. I guess this was also intended as irony.

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