This month MSDN Magazine launches a new online column focused on HTML5 and Web development, called Web Development Report. Penned by Rachel Appel, a Microsoft senior developer evangelist in the New York City area, the new column explores the fast-changing arena of standards-based Web development, with a focus on HTML5 and JavaScript.

Appel's inaugural column focuses on mobile Web development, looking at how HTML5, jQuery Mobile and ASP.NET MVC 4 can be used to target multiple mobile platforms from a single codebase.

Appel is hardly new to Web development. She's been working in Web programming since the days of Classic ASP, and was an early adopter of the .NET Framework, wrangling with the initial alpha versions of the platform. Of late she's been busying supporting Microsoft's efforts with ASP.NET and Web programming in general, and has been engaged with HTML5 as it emerges as an important target for Web development.

Here at MSDN Magazine we're seeing strong reader interest in HTML5 development and related topics, and Appel for one says she isn't surprised. She notes that many developers want to create online games using Canvas, while others are focused on business features such as HTML forms. But all these audiences share a common ground. "The common questions and concerns are cross platform development and Web standards," she says, "and rightfully so, since standards make it easier for everyone."

The Web Development Report will appear on the MSDN Magazine Web site on the 15th of each month (or the first business day after the 15th). Do you have a topic your want Rachel to cover? Email Appel at rachel.appel@microsoft.com, or leave a comment here.