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Author Topic: Larger Font Please  (Read 25370 times)
Mark D Segal
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« Reply #20 on: September 19, 2005, 07:37:13 AM »
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Helvetica, Ariel and their relatives I believe are also fine - and you are right - likely more universally available on peoples' computers. I must emphasise though that whichever of these, if any, gets adopted - the critical issue here isn't only the font - it is the font STYLE: size, blackness and letter spacing. Any of these fonts can be useless or very effective depending on how they are specified.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
Graham Welland
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« Reply #21 on: September 19, 2005, 08:46:30 AM »
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I wonder what percentage of Forum readers are reading L-L on a Mac laptop using Safari?
I would venture that the number of Mac users here on these forums is a LOT more than you suppose. As regards Safari, it's the default for OS X these days and the idiot board font size is the same under Firefox too which just about includes 99.99% of all Mac users. The presentation doesn't change between my laptops and desktop Macs either - that's one of the beauties of having a platform that is built from the ground up using the elements of excellent visual design. What looks bad on the laptop looks just as bad on my desktop - I just have a desktop that's twice as big that's all.

The other issue, other than font size alone, is that the leading seems to be too large too. The font that I see in front of me while creating this message in the edit box is just about ideal. The font displayed in the forum headings is ok too. However the actual text of the forum messages seems about two points too large. Ironically, the signature is displayed about two points too small.

From a design perspective I'm sure that anybody with basic typographical skills and experience is whincing when they see this board at the moment. It shows a Frankenstein of different font sizes and weights and lacks consistency. If it's all going to be large font for the Windows visually impaired then fine but let's at least make the site consistent.

 
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jani
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« Reply #22 on: September 19, 2005, 09:20:32 AM »
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Helvetica, Ariel and their relatives I believe are also fine - and you are right - likely more universally available on peoples' computers. I must emphasise though that whichever of these, if any, gets adopted - the critical issue here isn't only the font - it is the font STYLE: size, blackness and letter spacing. Any of these fonts can be useless or very effective depending on how they are specified.
The point is that if the font is available, it's easier to configure the web browser to correct for font size etc.

But yes, I agree, it's important that these sizes are set to sensible values.

Sensible values are usually the browser default (since these are configured by the user), not giving any font size specifics. The exception is those rare cases where you need a font to be smaller or greater. Then it's optimal to give a relative size rather than an absolute in points or pixels.
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Jan
Graham Welland
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« Reply #23 on: September 19, 2005, 09:37:41 AM »
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Since my last post on font sizes it seems to have changed ... it's much better now.

At least one board member is happier now

I like the rest of the changes to the gui btw.
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Graham
Quentin
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« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2005, 09:39:12 AM »
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Give me Firefox any day over IE.   I hate IE - slow, cumbersome.  If IE 7 is better that IE 6, it's down to some real competition at last from Firefox.

Quentin
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Quentin Bargate, ARPS, Author, photographer entrepreneur and senior partner of Bargate Murray, Law Firm of the Year 2013
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« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2005, 09:42:43 AM »
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From a design perspective I'm sure that anybody with basic typographical skills and experience is whincing when they see this board at the moment. It shows a Frankenstein of different font sizes and weights and lacks consistency. If it's all going to be large font for the Windows visually impaired then fine but let's at least make the site consistent.

Gwelland,

Seems your problem is isolated to your machines.  I'd suggest you setup your browsers to use thier own CSS and overide the board if you don't like it, or maybe that's what is creating your problems in the first place.  Otherwise hold your overzealous and pejoritive comments to yourself.
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« Reply #26 on: September 19, 2005, 09:46:33 AM »
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Sensible values are usually the browser default (since these are configured by the user), not giving any font size specifics.

And that's why the style sheet reads with only tahoma, if you don't have it it will be the default font that you've specified so its a blend.
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jani
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« Reply #27 on: September 19, 2005, 09:57:19 AM »
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And that's why the style sheet reads with only tahoma, if you don't have it it will be the default font that you've specified so its a blend.
Nopes, it still says:

Code:
TABLE, TR, TD     { font: 11pt Tahoma; color:#404040 }

BODY      { font: 11pt Tahoma; color:#404040; background-color: #FFFFFF }

But:

Code:
.forminput    { font-size: 8pt; background-color: #E8E8E8; font-family: verdana, helvetica, sans-serif; vertical-align:middle }

.textinput    { font-size: 10pt; font-family: verdana, helvetica, sans-serif;vertical-align:middle; background-color: #e8e8e8 }

See what I mean?
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Jan
61Dynamic
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« Reply #28 on: September 19, 2005, 10:26:33 AM »
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Quote from: jani,Sep. 19 2005,05:03
Quote from: MarkDS,Sep. 19 2005,07:54
Nopes, Verdana is yet another of those fonts that are only available in a select number of Windows versions, unless you've installed it specially. It's possible that it comes with recent versions of MacOS X, but I don't use that.

That's why I suggested Helvetica and the more general "Sans-Serif".

Arial is another possibility, since this font has been available since Windows 95, at least, and has made its way to most other platforms, if I recall correctly.
Verdana should be on any modern system. It was created by Microsoft for use as a system font in Windows 95. Any Mac with the mac version of IE or MS Office installed also got this font and the font continues to appear in OSX Tiger today. Basically a vast majority of Macs have it available.

And since a vast majority of IBM-compatable PCs are Win95 and above, it's safe to say it's a standard and readily available font.

Helvetica on the other hand was designed in '57 and is a default font used on the Mac. It does not appear on any Windows system unless it was installed by software or bought by the user.

And this is why in CSS font families are used. This lets the designer choose what the fallback font should be n case the primary choise is not available.

An example of a non-serif family could be:
Code:
font-family: Verdana, Tahoma, lucida, Geneva, Arial, sans-serif;
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #29 on: September 19, 2005, 11:16:50 AM »
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gwelland,

when I said "I wonder", I really meant <I wonder>, nothing else implied or intended.

Niel,

taking a real close second look at this, at least as far as my 19 inch Dell/Sony monitor show using crummy, old IE  Cheesy (in truth and in fact it is neither crummy nor old - works just fine), I think the only real problem with the font is that the letters are too close together. Interestingly, there is a difference in the font when in "posting" mode, compared with "posted" mode. In posting mode (i.e. the window I am now in while writing this post), the text is much more easily readable than it turns out to be once posted. In posting mode the letters are further apart. Not clear to me whether the font is the same or not, or whether it is a style spec difference for the same basic font.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
Graham Welland
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« Reply #30 on: September 19, 2005, 11:36:25 AM »
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Quote
From a design perspective I'm sure that anybody with basic typographical skills and experience is whincing when they see this board at the moment. It shows a Frankenstein of different font sizes and weights and lacks consistency. If it's all going to be large font for the Windows visually impaired then fine but let's at least make the site consistent.

Gwelland,

Seems your problem is isolated to your machines.  I'd suggest you setup your browsers to use thier own CSS and overide the board if you don't like it, or maybe that's what is creating your problems in the first place.  Otherwise hold your overzealous and pejoritive comments to yourself.
Well, I'm sorry you feel this way but as of this morning, until a change was made, the main fonts used in these forums was rendering at least two points larger than it currently is and was similarly residing side by side with other much smaller fonts.

As regards the browser settings - sure I can change my style sheets but the simple fact of the matter is that all five of my Macs running the same OS versions and no custom changes rendered the forum text in the same manner. The presentation irregularities were isolated purely to the forums here and no other sites that I visit.

Perhaps I can suggest that a test of the site be carried out against the two main platforms out there, i.e. Windows/IE and Mac/Safari before committing changes. That's the stuff I have to do in my life as a web software developer because as we all know the supposed standards for web presentation aren't.

p.s. I did say it got better ...
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Graham
jani
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« Reply #31 on: September 19, 2005, 11:52:00 AM »
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Verdana should be on any modern system. It was created by Microsoft for use as a system font in Windows 95.
Verdana was introduced with Windows 98. Arial was the one that was introduced with Windows 95 (if you don't believe that, I can send you one of my Windows 95 install media, but see also this list of standard Windows fonts). While Verdana may have been designed for use with Windows 95, it certainly wasn't shipped with the system. However, I think you got it if you downloaded an upgrade of Internet Explorer sometime later.

But hopefully, either system is out of use real soon now, and I'm inclined to say that neither Windows 95 nor Windows 98 are "modern systems".

Quote
Helvetica on the other hand was designed in '57 and is a default font used on the Mac. It does not appear on any Windows system unless it was installed by software or bought by the user.
Sorry, I was so used to it appearing in Windows 3.x (I think), that I forgot about that.

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And this is why in CSS font families are used. This lets the designer choose what the fallback font should be n case the primary choise is not available.
Exactly.
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Jan
kaelaria
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« Reply #32 on: September 23, 2005, 10:33:02 PM »
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This font sucks, period.

Forums are all about reading information, not looking fancy and trendy.  Out of the dozen daily forums I participate in, this is the ONLY one that is actually HARD to read, and makes you concentrate just to see it.

Why this site continues it's blunders is beyond me.  It's such a simple thing, to set up a server and forum.  After a year+ of critisism and suggestions they finally are forced to correct the setup problems - and now it's all blown on the simple, SIMPLE execution of the forum look.

I just don't get it.

ADMINS - FIX YOUR TERRIBLE SETUP!

Set all your forum fonts to Verdana or Arial and BE DONE WITH THE COMPLAINTS!  Tahoma is one of the WORST fonts to use for easy reading on a forum, period!
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61Dynamic
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« Reply #33 on: September 23, 2005, 11:55:02 PM »
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Bad day?

While I agree with your sedements, a more civil mannor of convaying them would be more productive.

That said, I noticed something odd. In Safari, the font displayed is Verdana but in FF it's Times New Roman. Just a passing observation.

**

There are only two calls for Tahoma in the first couple lines of the ikonboard.css file. Changing them to Verdana removes all instances of tahoma.

Actually, the second one is redundant...
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Graham Welland
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« Reply #34 on: September 24, 2005, 12:54:57 AM »
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This font sucks, period.

Forums are all about reading information, not looking fancy and trendy.  Out of the dozen daily forums I participate in, this is the ONLY one that is actually HARD to read, and makes you concentrate just to see it.

Why this site continues it's blunders is beyond me.  It's such a simple thing, to set up a server and forum.  After a year+ of critisism and suggestions they finally are forced to correct the setup problems - and now it's all blown on the simple, SIMPLE execution of the forum look.

I just don't get it.

ADMINS - FIX YOUR TERRIBLE SETUP!

Set all your forum fonts to Verdana or Arial and BE DONE WITH THE COMPLAINTS!  Tahoma is one of the WORST fonts to use for easy reading on a forum, period!
Now don't you go criticising the presentation of these forums - I'm supposed to the be the overzealous and prejorative one here so no stealing that crown ... lest the wrath of a miffed admin come your way!  

For what it's worth, the presentation in both Safari & Firefox, on the Mac platform at least, is consistent and looks fine. You could argue that the signature line font is too small, is inconsistent with an http link in the signature, and introduces another different font size on the forum display to add to the heading/body and modified entry fonts, but hey, what do I know ...

61Dynamic: I assume you've checked that you're not overriding the presentation with your own fonts? (I assume not, but FF displays the sans serif font here on my setup with absolutlely no overrides specified).
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Graham
Mark D Segal
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« Reply #35 on: September 24, 2005, 07:41:46 AM »
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Guys, I don't think we need to get intemperate. The world won't come to an end tomorrow - at least not over this issue. I fully agree that reading Tahoma 11 on these posts is an eyestrain, and it does not need to be that way. Therefore I prepared an MSWord doc with samples of Tahoma 11 and Verdana 11 and sent them to the "powers to be" with a suggestion that they seriously consider changing the font to Verdana. The difference is quite remarkable - especially the letter spacing, which is the key problem here.

I have also seen that on a large Mac display the Tahoma font actually reads not too badly. However on a 19 inch Dell/Sony Trinitron monitor using Internet Explorer in Windows XP, which I believe is a very common set-up for vast numbers of people, Tahoma 11 is cramped and tough to read.  

Let us see what happens. They also have other things to do, so give them a chance to get to it - remember - this is a free service and every time we ask for something to be changed, we are making requests on Michael or Neil to devote more of their valuable time to servicing these requests.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
Graham Welland
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« Reply #36 on: September 24, 2005, 01:35:48 PM »
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If it helps to have an example of a similar style of forum with sans serif fonts and very comparable layout style to here that works well on all browsers & resolutions & platforms then take a look at the Rob Galbraith forum site. The css is at Style sheet. The style sheets have a more graceful fall back on alternative fonts if the native fonts aren't available.

I think we're pretty close here and it seems to work well on normal resolutions of 1200x1024 (Mac & PC) and at 1600x1280+ it's still pretty hard to read on the Mac platform at least. Given a choice between the huge forum font we had a few days back and the fixed version we have now I'll have the current one and select larger fonts in my browser on the larger screens if Ineed to.
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Graham
61Dynamic
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« Reply #37 on: September 24, 2005, 01:45:49 PM »
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I'm almost done cleaning up the CSS used on this forum. The alterations I'm making make the fonts much more legible and consistent, cleans up some redundant code and makes it resolution independent via the use of pt instead of px sizes. I was intending on having it just auto-load in my browser but I'll send a copy to Michael and Neil in case they would like to implement it.
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61Dynamic
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« Reply #38 on: September 24, 2005, 02:35:14 PM »
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Before I e-mail them the CSS I'll get some public opinion on it.

Here s a screenshot of what it'll look like in Safari:
:

Yays or Nays?
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #39 on: September 24, 2005, 02:40:12 PM »
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Daniel,

Your screen shot comes out loud and clear on my IE Windows machine. If it will look like that or a bit thinner, it will be a true relief and improvement. Thanks for taking the trouble to do this.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
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