Scobleizer Weblog

Daily Permalink Friday, September 20, 2002

I'd love feedback about how my fonts look. What CSS setting would you recommend? Post in the comments here, or send me email (click on the little envelope on the right to send me email).

This is a good lesson for why CSS is a good thing for Web designers. Let's say that Dave was my boss (he was at one time). Let's say he says "the font looks like shit, fix it or find another job." In CSS, I only need to change one setting in one file and instantly the fonts on every Web page here changes (without needing to reupload and test each page individually). This saves a huge amount of time. Not to mention it hits the server a lot less. And, it might have saved my job, had I been a Web designer working for Dave.

Fonts Broken here? Dave says the text is impossible to read here. Um, try again. I wasn't gonna out him as the guy who has his browser's font size set to small. Hi Dave. Turns out I went and did some research. If I use "ems" in my CSS style sheet, things break, according to Zeldman. He recommends not setting the font size at all (which is what I'm now doing) or using "px's" (pixels). In other words, it's not a problem with using Web standards, but in implementation on both mine, yours, and the browser manufacturer's part. It's the Web, what can I say? Heh.

Ahhh, fonts are such a bitch. I make them look good on my machine and someone writes and tells me they look like shit on his machine. Well, fucking keep your browser on default like everyone else! Heh. Don't you wish you could tell your clients/customers/readers that? Instead, we go off to Google, find Zeldman, who tell us "just give up and use pixels even though it's the wrong way to do it." Well, this isn't a commercial site, so I won't do it "the wrong way." Screw that. Hell, maybe just turning my page into XML would be a good idea. Make everyone apply their own font style sheets to the crap I write. Heh. Only problem with that is my mom doesn't have a clue about what XML is. Urgh. Have a great weekend while I learn about fonts.

OK, the guy who was complaining about his fonts looking weird here had his browser set to "smaller" font size. He says he likes surfing with that setting better. Well, OK. I've made all my fonts here work at "1em" just for him. :-)

I don't like the font size now, though, so I might change them back. The things I do to please my readers. Of course, now that we're in CSS land it's only one setting to change. I hit save. And Radio pushes up the new style sheet and changes the font. It's a whole lot of fun. I wish all the Radio themes were designed to use CSS style sheets.

Ohhh, JD Lasica put up the first PopTech weblog is up with the first interview. Looks great. Hey, both Doc and I won't be there. Hmmm. No lobster for us. I see they are using the same look and feel as me. Hey, there was a reason I've been playing around with this template. It's a good one. I'll make sure the PopTech Weblog gets updated with the standards-based version shortly. Then I'll switch my colors to something different from everyone else. Can't be the same, no-no-no.

Hmm, I'm planning on going to the Harvard Business conference (Halley was asking for help setup WiFi -- as long as there's Internet connectivity on site somewhere we'll figure it out), so I'll help if at all possible. Speaking of which, I won't be going to this year's PopTech conference after all (major bummer) but will be helping with some weblogging and interviewing of speakers beforehand. So that'll be fun.

Rent or buy? That's the question, says Buzz (He's been trying to get me not to get married again). He's not alone among my friends either. They are wondering why I chose to get married again so soon after getting divorced. Well, for the past couple of years I remember saying "I wish I was with xxxxx." Well, guess what, I got my wish.

It really doesn't matter in the long term, does it?

It's all a journey and I see pros and cons to both side of the "rent or buy" aisle. No matter which side of the argument I'm on, the grass always seems greener on the other side of the fence. I think the key to life is to enjoy the grass on your side of the fence, no matter what state of brown it's in. After all, you might get shoved over to the other side of the fence someday and discover that that nice green color is just paint.

Legally, I agree with Buzz. By the way, we're getting married in Nevada. We got our marriage license in Las Vegas. Cost us $50. The courthouse is open 24-hours-a-day on weekends. You fill out a little post card. You pays your money. And you get your license. They didn't even check our IDs. Translation: It's just a scam to get your $50.

By the way, Buzz, it might be lust, but it's a lot better than my first marriage all the way around.

My love is coming home from Orlando. Ever wonder if someone's plane is on time? Now you don't need to wonder anymore. Just visit The Trip's Flight Tracker and enter in their flight number. It's a Java applet that shows you the plane as it flies towards its destination. Most excellent and better than calling the airport to see if someone will be on time.

I just tested it in Netscape 7.0 too. Looks great. Everything looks almost exactly the same in all three browsers. I'm using "ems" to set my font sizes, so if they are too small or too big, you can use your browser's font selection menu to change the sizes. And, I'm not gonna put in a lot of stuff for old browsers anymore. This isn't a commercial site. If you don't like it, you can read my XML. Heh.

It looks great in Opera 6.5. Any other browser tests out there? I'm downloading Netscape 7.0 right now. I really don't care about older browsers anymore. If you're a weblog reader and you are using some old wacko browser, it's time to upgrade. The browsers are all free and you'll have a better experience on the Web. I'm posting this from Opera, by the way. Looks great!

I've had someone say that the fonts here are too small. In IE6 they look great. What do they look like on older browsers? I'm downloading Mozilla right now.

Thanks to everyone who helped me figure out the errors. Everything looks great now. Only a couple of things won't validate. One is a bad tr tag in the calendar that'll be tough for me to fix (I found where in Radio the code is that generates the calendar, but I don't understand it, so it'll take some time to fix it). The other place that doesn't validate is the links for the comments. Those are also generated automatically and I won't be able to fix those. Neither are big errors, so for now I won't worry about them.

I'll be happy to share my templates and CSS style sheet with anyone who asks. Just send me email (click the little envelope over to the right to do that).

My goal now is to simplify the div structure on my templates (I don't wanna be accused of having "weird nested divs" ever again -- I still don't know what's wrong with them, although I'm getting some weird redrawing errors -- occassionally on first load I can't see the bottom of my home page).

The other thing I want to do is make my site more accessible. It's getting there, but I was just reviewing Mark's Accessibility Guidelines and I still have more to do.

As to the font question, my brother says sans serif. Well, I just might do what Zeldman did (give you an alternative style sheet so you can choose your own font).

OK, here's a religious argument. I've gotten a request to change my fonts from a serif font to a sans-serif font. The thesis is that sans serif fonts are easier to read on screen. So, before I change my template (it is really easy to change the font on my site now) I'd like to know what you think.

Hey, I could switch it every day, if you want.

If I were really cool, I'd be like Zeldman and let you choose your font (click the buttons in the top right side of his weblog to see what I mean).

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Robert Scoble works at Microsoft. Everything here, though, is his personal opinion and is not read or approved before it is posted. No warranties or other guarantees will be offered as to the quality of the opinions or anything else offered here.

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© Copyright 2004 Robert Scoble Last updated: 1/3/2004; 1:45:35 AM.