Markup Language

Example: "HTML is a markup language used to define the content of webpages."

A markup language is a type of syntax used for defining elements within a document, such as a webpage or data file. It uses tags to define the beginning and end of each element. Since markup files are saved as plain text files, the code can be viewed and edited in a text editor.

Popular markup languages include HTML, SGML, and XML. HTML, which is a subset of SGML (the Standard Generalized Markup Language), is used to define the layout of webpages, as well as the elements within each page. A typical HTML page starts with a <head> section, which may include a title, metadata, and references to one or more CSS files. The <body> section of an HTML page defines the content, which may include text, references to image files, and links to other pages.

XML files contain custom tags that are used to define elements and sub-elements within a document. While HTML files are used to format how information is displayed, XML files are generally used to store data in a structured format. For example, an <employee> tag could be used to define an employee element within an XML data file. The tags <name> and <title> could be used as sub-elements to define the employee's name and position. The simplicity and flexibility of XML has made it a popular choice for sharing structured data between programs.

Updated: May 23, 2011

Definition from the PC Glossary