For years, there have been two protocols in the works at W3C. XHTML 2.0 and HTML 5.
Looking at the fact that most modern browsers have started supporting HTML 5 while nothing concrete came out on the XHTML 2.0 front, it was quite obvious where the support was from all the major companies.
I first got an inkling when I read the following article – http://stuffandnonsense.co.uk/blog/about/keep_calm_and_carry_on_with_html5/
So I googled a bit and found the following:
A more detailed understanding can be taken from http://www.w3.org/MarkUp/Activity
Of course, even the HTML 5 has been given the signal to be the upcoming standard, it does not mean that it is without its deficiencies. However, things had stagnated on the HTML standards front in the last 2-3 years and at least that part of things will get better!
You can learn more about HTML 5 from http://www.w3schools.com/html5/html5_reference.asp
Of course, despite all this euphoria, IE users will have to wait till IE 9 comes out – http://digg.com/d31AaBH