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Re: LYNX-DEV Lynx & Tables
Re: LYNX-DEV Lynx & Tables
Thu, 19 Dec 1996 21:01:35 -0600 (CST)
+ Date: Thu, 19 Dec 1996 14:58:44 -0700 (MST)
+ From: "Benjamin C. W. Sittler" <address@hidden>
+ X-Sender: address@hidden
+ Subject: Re: LYNX-DEV Lynx & Tables
+ This question is related to formatting tables for ASCII or PRE...
+ does anybody know what the optimum line length (in characters) is for
+ purposes of readability? Does this vary by language? (Sorry, only 8-bit
+ character statistics are useful right now)
language is not particularly relevant. discounting ones that are written
vertically, that is. :)
Horizontal scrolling of the display is to be avoided -- this *DRAMATICALLY*
impairs readability of text blocks, and for 'tabular data', results in a
need to 'skip back and forth' to see both 'row titles' and right-side
+ I would like to know because I'm experimenting with a cost-based rendering
+ of tables into ASCII, and I'd like to determine the relative costs of
+ breaking lines versus making lines very wide, in terms of readability.
+ Any help is appreciated.
"human factors" data: region of 'peak visual acuity' is about 3 degrees
wide. this translates to approx size of a newspaper column, at the distance
a newspaper is usually read at. 'full page width' on a book is about 3x,
and people have to move their eyes 2-3 times to read each line. which
slows reading speed somewhat.
Less of an issue with regards to a CRT, due to the limited number of lines
displayed, and the 'batch mode' nature of presentation on a simple 'character
cell' device. There is no real justification for making things signficiantly
shorter than the capabilities of an 80 column display. In _my_ experience,
132 col tends to be 'awkwardly wide' for 'body text', somewhere around 80-100
cols max works better. Tabular stuff is clearly ok at 132 cols, even up to
160 or so. *HOWEVER* visual 'cues' for horizontal alignment become -very-
important (e.g., white-space every 5 rows) -- viewers _must_ be able to
**'at a glance'** match row headers with columns that are 'far away'. The
value of this is -very- noticable at 'widths' beyond 100-120 characters, and
can be of significant benefit as width exceeds 60 characters.
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Re: LYNX-DEV Lynx & Tables, Brian Exelbierd, 1996/12/19
- Re: LYNX-DEV Lynx & Tables,
Robert Bonomi <=