[Haddock] Stylin' the Haskell universe

Mark Lentczner markl at glyphic.com
Mon Sep 27 23:56:12 EDT 2010

== I'm resending this as it got lost in the Haddock mailing list outage. I realize that
=== some people got copies as they were e-mailed directly, but I wanted to be sure the
=== list saw it as well. - Mark

On Sep 13, 2010, at 8:36 AM, Thomas Schilling wrote:
> Is there a good reason to use pixel-sized fonts (or the equivalent relative sizing hack) other than "Alistapart says so."?

Yes - because practically every major internet site does this - and in turn it affects user behavior. To be clear, Ocean.css doesn't use px sizes, it uses pt sizes and does it in the way deeply tested and endorsed by Yahoo's YUI work. It works well in all browsers, including IE. It normalizes so that an "out-of-the-box" browser displays body text at 13pt. Turns out, users, in droves, don't change the default text size, and the built-in standard of 16pt is just too big. Since the vast majority of frequented web sites[1] do this adjustment, users do not change the font settings. Bucking this trend just makes your text to large to read comfortably.

Sigh. I'm not saying I agree with this state of affairs - it is just the reality of the web these days.

> Most browsers nowadays allow you to zoom in and out and remember the setting per domain, but this scaling actually doesn't just change the font size, but also the scaling of images.

Tru 'nuf. That said, if the user is increasing the size because they find the 13pt text hard to read - both the use and the designer probably want the images to scale as well to keep the relationship of the layout right.

	- Mark

[1] Try this: set your default fonts in your browser's settings to something very large and obvious - say 36pt (from the standard of 16pt). Now browse Google.com, Yahoo.com, cnn.com, twitter.com, facebook.com, youtube.com, etc.... Notice that none of them have doubled the size of the text. I tried it in Chrome and found exactly one line of text in all those sites that resized: The "Change Background Image" link on the google come page!

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