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handling multi browser font sizes

P: n/a
J
I've run CSSCheck on my style sheets and I always get a warning
similar to this:

"font: bold 9pt/100% sans-serif

Warning: Absolute length units should not generally be used on the Web ..."

Yet if I use 'x-small' instead of 9pt, I get bigger type on IE6 and smaller
type on
Mozilla. My choices seem to be:

1. keep the absolute 9pt setting in order to maintain a much more consistent
display between browsers (and break the spirit of the stylesheets)

2. use 'x-small' and live with the different display results (yet be
compatible with
user defined stylesheets, and other output media).

Is that it?


Jul 20 '05
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115 Replies


P: n/a
Quoth the raven named CW.:
The masses have dictated that 80% seems to be the right size for
'normal' therefore since I'm catering for the masses I will take 80% as
'normal'.


What a bunch of malarkey. Masses?

80% is 20% smaller than the default. My default. Your default. Joe
Smith's default. Grandma Moses' default. Why are you having trouble
understanding this? Are you using Verdana, the too-big-to-start-with font?

Fix your own browser and stop bothering us.

--
-bts
-This space intentionally left blank.
Jul 20 '05 #101

P: n/a
On Mon, 26 Jan 2004 15:22:02 -0600, CW.
<Gu**********@mail.forum4designers.com> wrote:

Er ok so given your analogy I guess you don't drive (if of course you
can drive) on the same side of the road as everyone else since that
would be following the 'sheep' right!
No, it would be protecting oneself from danger. Doing tabular page layout
instead of buckling down and actually learning CSS, that would be
following sheep.
The masses have dictated that 80% seems to be the right size for
'normal' therefore since I'm catering for the masses I will take 80% as
'normal'.
Why would 80% be normal? That's like saying, "All my students think
angrade of 80% should be an A, so I'll assign an A to anyone with an 80."
80% means less than the default. And default is set by the user agent, and
adjusted by the user, to be what the user wants.
If you want to make the average user adjust their browser to view your
site correctly that's up to you.


I want the user to adjust their browser to their overall browsing
satisfaction. No use cursing at the wind when you can just as well go
inside. If the fonts on the web are too big for you set your default
smaller.
Jul 20 '05 #102

P: n/a
"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote:
Yeah, I do, because your response is to a supposed stance on my part
that one point less than default is still readable by everyone, when
I'm talking about one point (for the sake of argument) below
*optimal*. Yes, it started off with my suggesting

body { font-size: 80% }


Too small for me. A web page at 100% is the size that I can maximize the
usable space on my desktop AND be readable.
but since, as at least a couple of people here have insisted,
EVERYBODY IN THE WORLD RESETS HIS BROWSER FOR AN OPTIMAL DISPLAY, this
doesn't mean 80% of the factory default, it means 80% of the user's
optimal. And I absolutely don't believe anybody's *optimal* is the
same as his *minimal* because--well, a person's optimal type size is
simply not the one where he can barely make it out! Unless one doesn't
know what "optimal" means, that is. In summary, I believe that if
someone simply can't read 80% of the default, then that person isn't
*using* the default, he's set his browser for a larger display. (And
anyone who says I'm wrong is disagreeing with the person who--sorry,
I'm not keeping track of who's making which argument--I got this
from.)


Optimal to ME is the smallest font I can use while the page is still
readable.


I do that too, sometimes. If I think that the type size on some page
is larger than I need and I want a bigger-picture view or I want to
refer to my browser and something else at the same time, I downshift
the size setting in the browser. Then if I go to another site that
doesn't use an inflated type size, so now the text *is* too small, I
adjust my setting back up again. Sorry, but I don't consider this a
major imposition. I don't consider it any different from changing the
volume on the TV from show to show or channel to channel.

--
Harlan Messinger
Remove the first dot from my e-mail address.
Veuillez ôter le premier point de mon adresse de courriel.
Jul 20 '05 #103

P: n/a
"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote:

"Harlan Messinger" <h.*********@comcast.net> wrote in message
news:bu************@ID-114100.news.uni-berlin.de...

"Tim" <Ti*@mail.localhost> wrote in message
news:89********************************@4ax.com...
> "Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote
>
> >> Leave my fonts ALONE!
>
>
> "Harlan Messinger" <h.*********@comcast.net> wrote:
>
> > I take it you refuse to read any book, magazine, or newspaper that is
> > printed in other than your one and only and immutable font size,

without
any
> > tolerance for even the most minute deviation.
>
> You do realise, that if a book is published with fonts that are too
> small for someone to read, that they're not likely to read it? Only
> some people are willing to sit there with a magnifying glass.


I'm not going to repeat myself any more. You and others are obviously
responding without paying attention to the details of what I have said.

One
would think that I had written something like "I like to set my body text

in
fixed 4-point type"?


And you do know that I can't read 8 point fonts on my system either, right?


Yet another irrelevant response. Did you see anywhere where I said, "I
like to set my body text in *8*-point type"? I was giving an example
of the type of outrageous position one would *normally* have to take
in order to incur the level of opprobrium that I've been receiving.

--
Harlan Messinger
Remove the first dot from my e-mail address.
Veuillez ôter le premier point de mon adresse de courriel.
Jul 20 '05 #104

P: n/a

"Harlan Messinger" <hm*******************@comcast.net> wrote in message
news:k5********************************@4ax.com...
"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote:
Yeah, I do, because your response is to a supposed stance on my part
that one point less than default is still readable by everyone, when
I'm talking about one point (for the sake of argument) below
*optimal*. Yes, it started off with my suggesting

body { font-size: 80% }


Too small for me. A web page at 100% is the size that I can maximize the
usable space on my desktop AND be readable.
but since, as at least a couple of people here have insisted,
EVERYBODY IN THE WORLD RESETS HIS BROWSER FOR AN OPTIMAL DISPLAY, this
doesn't mean 80% of the factory default, it means 80% of the user's
optimal. And I absolutely don't believe anybody's *optimal* is the
same as his *minimal* because--well, a person's optimal type size is
simply not the one where he can barely make it out! Unless one doesn't
know what "optimal" means, that is. In summary, I believe that if
someone simply can't read 80% of the default, then that person isn't
*using* the default, he's set his browser for a larger display. (And
anyone who says I'm wrong is disagreeing with the person who--sorry,
I'm not keeping track of who's making which argument--I got this
from.)


Optimal to ME is the smallest font I can use while the page is still
readable.


I do that too, sometimes. If I think that the type size on some page
is larger than I need and I want a bigger-picture view or I want to
refer to my browser and something else at the same time, I downshift
the size setting in the browser. Then if I go to another site that
doesn't use an inflated type size, so now the text *is* too small, I
adjust my setting back up again. Sorry, but I don't consider this a
major imposition. I don't consider it any different from changing the
volume on the TV from show to show or channel to channel.


If all the websites were using 100% and NOT 80%, etc. then it wouldn't be an
issue.

And, yes, I DO expect TV shows and stations to adhere to a standard volume
setting. I've got a few stations blocked out because the are always too loud
when I switch to that channel.

Jul 20 '05 #105

P: n/a
On Tue, 27 Jan 2004 04:51:49 GMT, Noozer <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote:

And, yes, I DO expect TV shows and stations to adhere to a standard
volume
setting. I've got a few stations blocked out because the are always too
loud
when I switch to that channel.


This is a great analogy you've set up.

Let's assume you have your volume set on your TV to a "default" setting,
one that's loud enough to hear but not so loud you get deafened. (For this
example, let's also assume you listen thruough headphones, so no matter
how loud the sound is, the person in the next room has no idea.)

Imagine if you were flipping channels and you got to a channel where the
sound was too loud. You'd be annoyed and turn down the volume. Annoying,
yes, but you can adjust the sound to be tolerable.

Later, you turn to a channel where, no matter how high you put the volume,
it's too soft to make out. (Yes, I've observed this in real life. Normally
a problem with the broadcaster's equipment.) This is more than annoying,
it's impossible to hear the sound with the program.

Now, imagine there's no video, just sound - it's basically radio. Without
video, that second channel is totally useless. Maybe the sound can be
turned all the way up to make it audible, but the viewer knows that
they'll forget to turn down the volume when they change channels, and BAM
there goes the eardrums.

Now, imagine you have hearing problems. You need more volume, and that
station which is simply annoyingly soft to your brother is completely
inaudible to you. Sure, the broadcast engineer might have great hearing,
and he might hate those channels (we've all encountered them) which are
TOO LOUD. But by overcompensating and sending too soft a signal, he's
disenfranchising a chunk of his audience - perhaps among them Viewers Like
You.

Now - imagine that instead of amplitude of sound, we're talking size of
text.

Think about that for a moment.

It's up to the broadcaster (web author) to set a volume (font size) which
is as close to the normal volume (size) the viewer will normally use as
possible. Too loud (big) will be annoying but manageable, but too soft
(small) will be impossible to work with for some viewers. They will turn
instead to another channel (website) and see their advertising
(advertising) and buy their products (products).

The only flaw in this analogy? Too loud can cause physical injury, but too
large text can do no real harm (besides "annoying" someone). In either
case, extremes in smallness make the end result worthless to a particular
segment of the viewership.

Therefore, it is far better to make the mistake of having your text size
too large than too small on a webpage.
Jul 20 '05 #106

P: n/a
"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote:

"Harlan Messinger" <hm*******************@comcast.net> wrote in message
news:k5********************************@4ax.com.. .
"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote:
>Optimal to ME is the smallest font I can use while the page is still
>readable.


I do that too, sometimes. If I think that the type size on some page
is larger than I need and I want a bigger-picture view or I want to
refer to my browser and something else at the same time, I downshift
the size setting in the browser. Then if I go to another site that
doesn't use an inflated type size, so now the text *is* too small, I
adjust my setting back up again. Sorry, but I don't consider this a
major imposition. I don't consider it any different from changing the
volume on the TV from show to show or channel to channel.


If all the websites were using 100% and NOT 80%, etc. then it wouldn't be an
issue.

And, yes, I DO expect TV shows and stations to adhere to a standard volume
setting. I've got a few stations blocked out because the are always too loud
when I switch to that channel.


Suppose there *was* a standard volume. You'd still have to deal with
the fact that if you set your box for what you considered optimal
volume for normal conversations, if you switched to a channel where a
war film was being shown, it would be louder, and if it was *too* loud
for you to tolerate, then you'd have to turn down your volume a
little. Or if you turned to a channel showing a pair of lovers
whispering to each other in romantic tones, you *just* might need to
raise the volume a little to make out what they're saying. And if you
found *that* intolerable, then I'd say you're asking for just a bit
more than it's reasonable for you to expect.

--
Harlan Messinger
Remove the first dot from my e-mail address.
Veuillez ôter le premier point de mon adresse de courriel.
Jul 20 '05 #107

P: n/a
Harlan Messinger wrote:

[re tv audio]
Suppose there *was* a standard volume.
Actually, there is a standard range. TV commercials sometimes try to
flout it or find other ways to increase perceived volume/impact, or so
I've been told.
You'd still have to deal with the fact that if you set your box for
what you considered optimal volume for normal conversations, if you
switched to a channel where a war film was being shown, it would be
louder, and if it was *too* loud for you to tolerate, then you'd have
to turn down your volume a little. Or if you turned to a channel
showing a pair of lovers whispering to each other in romantic tones,
you *just* might need to raise the volume a little to make out what
they're saying. And if you found *that* intolerable, then I'd say
you're asking for just a bit more than it's reasonable for you to
expect.


I'm afraid you lose with this analogy too. Although correct to a limited
extent, broadcast tv does compress the volume range of audio. If you
watch many DVDs you'll notice the much greater more cinematic volume
range; some DVD players even have an audio compander option which
reduces this for use in shared environments to cause less disturbance.

Mostly by the by, though it does illustrate the concern shown for
standards & acceptable parameter ranges.

--
Michael
m r o z a t u k g a t e w a y d o t n e t
Jul 20 '05 #108

P: n/a
Tim
On Tue, 27 Jan 2004 09:01:17 -0500,
Harlan Messinger <hm*******************@comcast.net> wrote:
Suppose there *was* a standard volume. You'd still have to deal with
the fact that if you set your box for what you considered optimal
volume for normal conversations, if you switched to a channel where a
war film was being shown, it would be louder, and if it was *too* loud
for you to tolerate, then you'd have to turn down your volume a
little. Or if you turned to a channel showing a pair of lovers
whispering to each other in romantic tones, you *just* might need to
raise the volume a little to make out what they're saying. And if you
found *that* intolerable, then I'd say you're asking for just a bit
more than it's reasonable for you to expect.


And when we go from one website to another, we don't expect the fonts to
change sizes without good reason. Usually, there isn't a good reason.

--
My "from" address is totally fake. The reply-to address is real, but
may be only temporary. Reply to usenet postings in the same place as
you read the message you're replying to.

This message was sent without a virus, please delete some files yourself.
Jul 20 '05 #109

P: n/a
Tim <Ti*@mail.localhost> wrote:
On Tue, 27 Jan 2004 09:01:17 -0500,
Harlan Messinger <hm*******************@comcast.net> wrote:
Suppose there *was* a standard volume. You'd still have to deal with
the fact that if you set your box for what you considered optimal
volume for normal conversations, if you switched to a channel where a
war film was being shown, it would be louder, and if it was *too* loud
for you to tolerate, then you'd have to turn down your volume a
little. Or if you turned to a channel showing a pair of lovers
whispering to each other in romantic tones, you *just* might need to
raise the volume a little to make out what they're saying. And if you
found *that* intolerable, then I'd say you're asking for just a bit
more than it's reasonable for you to expect.


And when we go from one website to another, we don't expect the fonts to
change sizes without good reason. Usually, there isn't a good reason.


I've already explained what the reasons are.
--
Harlan Messinger
Remove the first dot from my e-mail address.
Veuillez ôter le premier point de mon adresse de courriel.
Jul 20 '05 #110

P: n/a
<snip>

And when we go from one website to another, we don't expect the fonts to
change sizes without good reason. Usually, there isn't a good reason.


I've already explained what the reasons are.


You haven't given any GOOD reason at all.
Jul 20 '05 #111

P: n/a

"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote in message
news:1fWRb.320825$ts4.188890@pd7tw3no...
<snip>

And when we go from one website to another, we don't expect the fonts tochange sizes without good reason. Usually, there isn't a good reason.


I've already explained what the reasons are.


You haven't given any GOOD reason at all.


"Good reason" does not mean "reason that supports my preferred outcome".
Otherwise, by *definition* there would be no such thing as a "good reason"
for anything that you don't agree with, and that's really just too much of a
"the world revolves around me" attitude to bear.

If you reach your preferred outcome first, and then divide all possible
considerations into "good" and "bad" according to whether they support your
outcome or not, rather than beginning by recognizing the respective, real
merits of the factors on both sides and netting out the bottom line, then
you are not reasoning, you are reacting.

Jul 20 '05 #112

P: n/a
Tim
Tim wrote:
And when we go from one website to another, we don't expect the fonts to
change sizes without good reason. Usually, there isn't a good reason.

Harlan wrote:
I've already explained what the reasons are.


"Noozer" <po********@127.0.0.1> wrote
You haven't given any GOOD reason at all.

That was my impression, too.
"Harlan Messinger" <h.*********@comcast.net> wrote:
"Good reason" does not mean "reason that supports my preferred outcome".
Otherwise, by *definition* there would be no such thing as a "good reason"
for anything that you don't agree with, and that's really just too much of a
"the world revolves around me" attitude to bear.
"Good reason" would be that it's significantly more beneficial to do it
than not to do it. I haven't seen any evidence of that. I haven't even
seen something that suggests that it might even be slightly beneficial
to do it. But I have seen plenty of examples where people's various
ideas about what might be good to do, is actually quite annoying to a
significantly large number of people.

If you don't play silly games with fonts, it's very unlikely that you'll
make a page difficult or annoying for a person to read. If you do play
games with fonts, it's quite difficult to ensure that you don't (make it
difficult), and quite likely that you will.
If you reach your preferred outcome first, and then divide all possible
considerations into "good" and "bad" according to whether they support your
outcome or not, rather than beginning by recognizing the respective, real
merits of the factors on both sides and netting out the bottom line, then
you are not reasoning, you are reacting.


I see someone blathering trying to defend the indefensible, I don't see
sensible justifications.

--
My "from" address is totally fake. The reply-to address is real, but
may be only temporary. Reply to usenet postings in the same place as
you read the message you're replying to.

This message was sent without a virus, please delete some files yourself.
Jul 20 '05 #113

P: n/a
Tim <Ti*@mail.localhost> wrote:

"Good reason" would be that it's significantly more beneficial to do it
than not to do it. I haven't seen any evidence of that.
Again, whether a reason good or bad is determined by assessing its
merits on its own, NOT after netting out opposing factors. As for your
not having seen any evidence of it--I didn't just make this up from
scratch, awaiting a first round of personal opinions from random
posters on this newsgroup to validate it. I've brought it up here as a
well-established concept.
I haven't even
seen something that suggests that it might even be slightly beneficial
to do it. But I have seen plenty of examples where people's various
ideas about what might be good to do, is actually quite annoying to a
significantly large number of people.
You're confusing "people's various ideas" with "established design
principles".

If you don't play silly games with fonts, it's very unlikely that you'll
make a page difficult or annoying for a person to read. If you do play
games with fonts, it's quite difficult to ensure that you don't (make it
difficult), and quite likely that you will.
If you reach your preferred outcome first, and then divide all possible
considerations into "good" and "bad" according to whether they support your
outcome or not, rather than beginning by recognizing the respective, real
merits of the factors on both sides and netting out the bottom line, then
you are not reasoning, you are reacting.


I see someone blathering trying to defend the indefensible, I don't see
sensible justifications.


I see somebody who thinks his opinion overrides an established design
principle.
--
Harlan Messinger
Remove the first dot from my e-mail address.
Veuillez ôter le premier point de mon adresse de courriel.
Jul 20 '05 #114

P: n/a
Tim
On Thu, 29 Jan 2004 08:20:58 -0500,
Harlan Messinger <hm*******************@comcast.net> wrote:
You're confusing "people's various ideas" with "established design
principles".


You're confusing established practises with useful ones. There's a lot
of common design practises which are just plain bad, with more designers
coming into the game just blindly copying what was done before.

--
My "from" address is totally fake. The reply-to address is real, but
may be only temporary. Reply to usenet postings in the same place as
you read the message you're replying to.

This message was sent without a virus, please delete some files yourself.
Jul 20 '05 #115

P: n/a
Neal wrote:
On Tue, 27 Jan 2004, Noozer wrote:
And, yes, I DO expect TV shows and stations to adhere to a
standard volume setting. I've got a few stations blocked out
because the are always too loud when I switch to that channel.


This is a great analogy you've set up.


No, it isn't. :-p

TV/radio broadcasting cannot set a standard volume in db due to
technical limitations. If, in flipping around the dial, or changing
channels, the volume changes, that is inherent in the medium.

On the web, there is no such limitation. Setting font-size to 100%
gives users their preferred size. And *every* properly authored site
will return the same results with respect to text size.

--
Brian (follow directions in my address to email me)
http://www.tsmchughs.com/

Jul 20 '05 #116

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