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Re: WANTED: Design for documentation (Photoshop power users!)

From: Alexander Kobel
Subject: Re: WANTED: Design for documentation (Photoshop power users!)
Date: Tue, 07 Oct 2008 11:22:17 +0200
User-agent: Thunderbird (Macintosh/20080914)

Sebastian Menge wrote:
> [...]
>> For the long lines: I heard this stuff - 40 to 80 characters, best
>> between 50 and 60, serifs (although not on the screen, depending on
>> whom you ask), microtypographically fitted hyphens and dots at the
> Just looked up a research article on this. I dont understand it really,
> but it seems to be not that easy.

Hm. They mention similar ideas as we did in their "discussion" part.
But, sadly, I think this is the only thing you can take serious in this
Twenty (!) students? And they want to get representative results?
All experienced screen readers? Well, this might fit the LilyPond user
community, but I'm not absolutely sure about it.

Paging, but /no scrolling/ allowed? WTF? I use scrolling all the time...
At second thought, sometimes I even seem not to jump to the next line by
my eye but by scrolling a line. I prefer to either read near the very
top or the very bottom of the screen.
May be this habit comes from large line lengths on web pages where the
designers didn't think about ergonomy... But it's something I subsume
under print vs. screen design differences.
In school, I learned reading using a ruler to fix concentration on one
line. This is a reasoned method and works really well. Now, you don't
want to tinker around with a ruler reading the news during breakfast,
but a web browser offers a very similar feature for free - scrolling
near the margins of the view.

By the way, the line length of their article (fixed to 620px @ 11pt)
matches about 110 characters. In contrast, a line of the current version
of the LilyPond manual is about 140 characters at a width of 73% x
1280px = 934px, here. It's not that much more, and it's clearly the
better readable of the two: I don't have sight problems, but I zoomed
into the research article, and I can read the LilyPond site without
problems. (All font sizes etc. the Firefox default on Mac.)


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