W3C develops technical specifications and guidelines through a process designed to maximize consensus about the content of a technical report, to ensure high technical and editorial quality, and to earn endorsement by W3C and the broader community.
W3C provides a number of views of its specifications, including:
If you are learning about Web technology, you may wish to start with the introduction below, and follow links for more and more detail.
Web Design and Applications involve the standards for building and rendering Web pages, including HTML5, CSS, SVG, Ajax, and other technologies for Web Applications (“WebApps”). This section also includes information on how make pages accessible to people with disabilities (WCAG), internationalized, and work on mobile devices.
Web Architecture focuses on the foundation technologies and principles which sustain the Web, including URIs and HTTP.
In addition to the classic “Web of documents” W3C is helping to build a technology stack to support a “Web of data”, the sort of data you find in databases. The ultimate goal of the Web of data is to enable computers to do more useful work and to develop systems that can support trusted interactions over the network. The term “Semantic Web” refers to W3C’s vision of the Web of linked data. Semantic Web technologies enable people to create data stores on the Web, build vocabularies, and write rules for handling data. Linked data are empowered by technologies such as RDF, SPARQL, OWL, and SKOS.
XML Technologies including XML, XQuery, XML Schema, XSLT, XSL-FO, Efficient XML Interchange (EXI), and other related standards.
Web of Services refers to message-based design frequently found on the Web and in enterprise software. The Web of Services is based on technologies such as HTTP, XML, SOAP, WSDL, SPARQL, and others.
W3C is focusing on technologies to enable Web access anywhere, anytime, using any device. This includes Web access from mobile phones and other mobile devices as well as use of Web technology in consumer electronics, printers, interactive television, and even automobiles.
Web agents are intended to serve users. In this section you will find information useful when designing browsers and authoring tools, as well as search engine bots, aggregators, and inference engines.