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Tapajyoti Bose
Tapajyoti Bose

Posted on • Updated on

7 Cool HTML Elements Nobody Uses

Searching for cool HTML elements, especially if you don't know what you're looking for, is often like being thrown into a pile of garbage

thrown-into-garbage

Don't worry, I did the dirty work for you!

After scavenging through the seemingly endless pile of HTML elements, I dug up a few of the rarely used gems!

1. meter & progress

The progress element is the semantically correct way of displaying progress bars.

The meter element is progress on steroids. Apart from displaying a scalar measurement within a known range, it allows you to specify the value's low, high & optimum range.

<meter
  min="0"
  max="100"
  low="25"
  high="75"
  optimum="80"
  value="50"
></meter>
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meter

2. sup & sub

You can add superscripts (like ) with sup and subscripts (like x₀) using sub to your document.

superscript

subscript

3. datalist

datalist allows you to add an autocomplete suggestions to your input elements.

datalist

NOTE

  1. The suggestions are NOT LIMITED to text inputs, but can be used with color, date, time, and even range inputs.
  2. The default styling of the suggestions is unpleasant to look at, to say the least. But, you can always style it using CSS.

4. map & area

map and area allow you to create image maps, which is a fancy term for images with clickable areas.

<img
  src="workplace.jpg"
  alt="Workplace"
  usemap="#workmap"
  width="400"
  height="379"
/>

<map name="workmap">
  <area
    shape="rect"
    coords="34,44,270,350"
    alt="Computer"
    href="computer.html"
  />
  <area
    shape="rect"
    coords="290,172,333,250"
    alt="Phone"
    href="phone.html"
  />
  <area
    shape="circle"
    coords="337,300,44"
    alt="Cup of coffee"
    href="coffee.html"
  />
</map>
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map-and-area

4. details & summary

details and summary are used to create collapsible content without using any JavaScript. It's the semantic method of creating dropdowns.

details

6. object

Pulling your hair out to embed files on your website? Look no further!

object allows you to embed a wide range of files like PDFs, images, videos, audio and even Youtube videos.

object

7. abbr

The abbr element allows you to add abbreviations to your document. When the user hovers over the abbreviation, the full form is displayed. Moreover, screen readers can also be configured to read out the full form when an abbreviation is encountered.

abbriviation

That's all folks! 🎉

Reference

  1. W3Schools
  2. MDN

Thanks for reading

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Latest comments (40)

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javico11 profile image
El Náufrago ॐ • Edited on

Thanks for sharing!

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ashleyjsheridan profile image
Ashley Sheridan

There are a lot more tags in HTML that are rarely used. MDN lists a total of 114 current (not deprecated) tags. I'd say in general we probably only use a third of those at most.

To help, I made a tool to pick the most suitable HTML tag for any given purpose, all based off of a (quite complex) flowchart.

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sajedsoliman profile image
sajedsoliman

Thank you so much for doing the dirty work for us ❤
This really helpful

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dlillard0 profile image
DLillard0

awesome

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tbm206 profile image
Taha Ben Masaud

A great post and really useful. Thanks

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dannystyleart profile image
Dániel Sebestyén

I have just refactored an app component that used infinite amount of divs and spans for displaying interactive elements on a map like image.
Using map and areas was a piece of cake and it became instantly accessible just by using semantically correct elements 🤘
The end result: removal of 800 lines of code and avoided using 2 libraries (gzipped ~210kb) just to solve a problem that is already solved 😁

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anirseven profile image
Anirban Majumdar

Amazing thanks for sharing

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thisismatt profile image
this-is-matt

Very nice! It was a great reminder.

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julie_lewis_11d5eeebeddf7 profile image
Julie Lewis • Edited on

<map> and <area> are never used for a reason. They are horrible for accessibility, and I would think difficult to make responsive. I don't think I have used an image map this century.

I'll be checking out <object> though.

Another one that people forget about is definition lists. <dl>,<dt>,<dd>. If you've ever wished you could nest block elements in a bulleted list - like when your content creators looove multi-sentence bullets - definition lists are for you.

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modelhusband01 profile image
Model Husband 👑

Thanks for sharing, they are useful 💯

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nda profile image
Dmitry

Very helpful article. Thanks, Tapajyoti

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roelroel profile image
Roel de Brouwer

Why use images to demo html elements on a html-page?

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damienpirsy profile image
Matteo Vignoli

They are used so little that not even him uses them

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efecollins profile image
Efosa Collins EVBOWE

That datalist element would be my saviour

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mobarakali profile image
Mobarak Ali

Nice Article!

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francoisaudic profile image
francoisaudic

What's about the accessibility of those elements ? How do they work with keyboard and screenreaders ?

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