Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Width and readability

I've just switched the "theme" of this blog to a fixed width theme. As screens get wider, it can be awkward if lines of text are too long because it's too easy to lose your place when your eyes flick back to find the start of the next line.

Related odd thought: I remember reading (I forget where -- I think somewhere in the documentation for the LaTeX publishing system) that the Times font was designed specifically for narrow columns of text, as you get in the Times newspaper, and there was a warning that it could look awkward for documents with much wider single-column formats. However, it's been the default in Word for a decade (though they changed it in Word 2007), and probably most of the documents any of us have printed have used it, without it seeming awkward. Anything else looks unusual. So does that mean that the warning was wrong, or just that we've got so used to it we don't notice any more?

No comments: