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HTML5 Project Brings Tablet Reading Experience to Any Browser

On Tuesday the Center for Public Integrity, a non-profit research organization based in Washington, D.C., debuted its first HTML5 project, designed to make lengthier stories more palatable for readers using desktop and mobile browsers.

The Center has fashioned a template that mimics the in-app reading experience of newspapers like The Washington Post and magazines like Travel + Leisure — minus, of course, some of the interactive capabilities, such as swiping, offered by touchscreen devices — in a web browser. Content is displayed in a horizontal, widescreen format devoid of distracting banner ads and links to other content. Users can pull up a left-hand navigation bar to navigate between story sections, and click on arrows to tab between individual pages. The size and amount of text on display adjusts according to the size of the browser.

Since the template (created in conjunction with digital reading platform Treesaver) is rendered in HTML5, the format is entirely mobile-friendly, bringing the app experience not only to desktops, but to any mobile device with an up-to-date web browser as well.

It’s also significantly cheaper to produce than a mobile app for a complex operating system like iOS or Android, meaning that more news organizations will be able to render digital, app-like experiences without hiring a developer.

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