#1 By: Maggie Koerth-Baker, January 22nd, 2014 12:26
#2 By: Geraint Jones, January 22nd, 2014 12:57
Also; some sites still haven't learned lessons regarding background choice - be it texture, contrast or issues that only show up when scrolling/in particular browsers.
Things I've noticed on some blogs/sites - "vibrating" columns, where moving the mouse over the area causes it to judder up and down by a pixel or two. Has an unnerving effect similar to a picture taken deliberately out of focus...
Another is using dithered (I think that's the right word) colours for backrounds... Fine when stationary, but combine with an LCD screen that has a distinct refresh rate and scroll down and all of a sudden you have juddery nastiness again.
Never mind the good old grey text on slightly different grey background.
Or long winded posts written in very ornate fonts. yuck.
Aaaaaah. That was cathartic.
#3 By: Anthony Vicari, January 22nd, 2014 13:27
First, fascinating that ~80 characters per line is actually near-ideal. Historical accident or have we (some of us) known that for a while?
Second, if they're so sure sans serif fonts are better for digital body text, why did they right with a serif font?
#4 By: Cary, January 22nd, 2014 13:56
What font should be used for ?
#5 By: Suzanne, January 22nd, 2014 13:57
#6 By: Paul Renault, January 22nd, 2014 14:12
I suspect that a lot of the rules of thumb that were learned in the few centuries after the invention of the printing press but before the invention of the WWW, were pretty good rules of thumb.
#7 By: CLamb, January 22nd, 2014 15:22
Hmm. 80 characters is also the size settled on for IBM punched cards in 1928.
#8 By: CLamb, January 22nd, 2014 15:23
I wonder how much of this applies to other than Latin fonts?
#9 By: Paul Renault, January 22nd, 2014 16:33
Typefaces, not fonts.
/Sorry, one of my pet peeves.
#10 By: Thorzdad, January 22nd, 2014 17:06
This is all pretty much graphic design 101. At least when I went through school, this aspect of typography was covered extensively.
#11 By: Kaleberg, January 22nd, 2014 17:17
De gustibus non est disputandum. I find Cracked with its tight, busy layout easier to read than Medium with its fat, flabby layout. Maybe it's because I have a neurological condition that quickly fatigues and spazzes my eye muscles. I guess some sites are easier for normal folks, while others are more handicapped friendly.
#12 By: Jonathan Badger, January 22nd, 2014 18:10
Yeah -- I don't really see the problem with the Cracked layout myself. Maybe the ads on the right are annoying, but I wouldn't know -- I use AdBlock.
#13 By: Marja Erwin, January 22nd, 2014 18:38
Maybe it didn't load right, but that site is practically unreadable and worsens my headache.
#14 By: teapot, January 22nd, 2014 21:25
The objective reason to hate Papyrus is that it's one of few script fonts that is shipped with windoze and as such is a classic choice for anyone doing their creative in MS Word.
I've heard that serif fonts are quicker to read as the 'tails' differentiate the letters better.
#15 By: Cowicide, January 23rd, 2014 03:23
Moiré patterns are trippy at least...
#16 By: fuzzyfuzzyfungus, January 23rd, 2014 05:22
LCDs have substantually attenuated the pain (at least for me). Back in the CRT days, there was nothing better to remind you that your monitor geometry settings were slightly shot and it was time to futilely petition the control yoke gods.
Now even the cheapest and nastiest LCDs on the market map every pixel neatly in its place and the effect isn't nearly as obnoxious.
#17 By: Alice Weir, January 23rd, 2014 07:22
It also just happens to be a number that you can see at a glance. I really don't follow that whole scan path idea to well - and I mean, both as an idea, and as an actual practice. I tend to grok 75-100% of each line at a swipe, with longer pauses between Eh - maybe that's why many people don't find reading so enjoyable. That scan path sure makes it look like they're working overtime!
My biggest gripe, by far, is developers pinning sidebars to fixed positions, so that when I expand the page, they stay put. and obscure the article or picture I was trying to see. It's a dumb. There's really nobody on this planet who is so very interesting that I will put up with that for long. There is only just so much blam and pow and clickbait I will countenance. And the smaller the screen real estate I'm looking at? The less of this kind of stuff I will put up with. When it becomes annoying enough? I will begin to dislike whoever and whatever all that junk refers to. So, a developer can easily mess with someone else's street cred and business by being dumb about this.
But I did like the suggestion on spacing and font groupings! Sooo much nicer to read.
#18 By: Celeste Agnes, January 24th, 2014 12:19
Exactly. Papyrus is grossly overused and just screams of grabbing the free 'spiritual nature vegan hippie' typeface off your PC. Once you start noticing Papyrus in business logos, you can't unsee it; it's everywhere (especially vegan, all natural foods, healing crystals or spiritual type stores). If you look down a natural/gluten free/granola aisle, it's 70% Papyrus on the labels.
I don't know why it even bugs me. It's just shitty, lazy branding and it can only hurt their image (even then only mildly because most people probably don't even care). But I can't help being annoyed. It's like an itch: I just want to send every natural-stuff store a list of free, distressed, ancient grains-looking open source fonts; "Please take 5 minutes and pick anything that's not Papyrus".
#19 By: Maggie Koerth-Baker, January 27th, 2014 12:26
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