There are regular threads asking whether the <applet>
or nested <object>/<embed> elements should be used to
place applets in web pages.
I have searched Sun's site a number of times to find what
Sun themselves advise, and previously failed to locate any
Searching just yesterday (for something not directly
related, of course) I stumbled across the following text, from..
Title 'Using APPLET, OBJECT and EMBED Tags'
Section 'Using the Applet tag'
"Note: The HTML specification states that the applet tag is deprecated,
and that you should use the object tag instead. However, the
specification is vague about how browsers should implement the object
tag to support Java applets, and browser support is currently
inconsistent. Sun therefore recommends that you continue to use the
applet tag as a consistent way to deploy Java applets across browsers on
So there you go. Here, in 2005*, Sun is advocating use of
an HTML 3.2 element to place applets in web pages.
* The document comes from the Java 1.5/5.0 Javadocs and
is dated 26 August 2005.
[ Note that the applet element provides no inbuilt way to
handle Java versioning, which is the main attraction of the
nested object/embed alternative. ]