It finally looks like the HTML working group will publish the First Public Working Draft of HTML 5 on 2008-01-22, . Mike Smith, the group’s W3C Staff Contact, just made the announcement on the mailing list. It’s been 9½ months since the HTMLWG was formed at the W3C and many of us have been becoming frustrated with the delays, so it is nice to finally have a publication schedule.
The HTML 4.0 Recommendation was first published on 1997-12-18 (though it was updated a couple of times since then). It’s been just over a decade; the anniversary was just a few days ago. It would have been nice to get the FPWD published close to this anniversary, or to at least publish before the end of the year, but alas, that can’t happen. However, publishing in January is still great news!