Looking Good

The promising layout I mentioned in my previous post is looking good.

I quickly tested it in IE5/Mac, IE5/Win and Safari and it renders exactly as expected under all of them. Opera 7 also has no problems with it.

A quick note to Dave and any other Konq users, I did install Konqueror on my home machine over the weekend and Konqueror seems to render the layout without much problem.

It did bring up a small issue that I may have to target once I get 2 and 3column layouts based off this new design. That problem is fonts. The big problem, at least on the Linux side of things, is that font sizes are very dependent on how the user has setup X. X, the base application used to manage a windowed interface under *nix OSes, has a few different places where a configuration option can have direct influence on how big a 10pt font may render on the user’s screen.

What I may end up doing is setting the base font size in pixels within the body selector of the stylesheet and use percentage values throughout the rest of the layout.

I’ve seen this suggested several times and it seems to work well. Except that IE doesn’t resize pixel-sized fonts. This is a problem for users who need assistance in reading a page by increasing the base font size. Moz and Opera don’t seem to have any problems resizing a pixel-defined font. It’s a real shame because that’s the only reason I don’t use that approach in every layout I put together.

But perhaps the fix for this is to look at stylesheet switchers and either provide one stylesheet which does not have a base font set in pixels OR provide several stylesheets (or via JavaScript) increase the base font size every time a user clicks a “enlarge font” button.

It’s definately a curious problem that I’ll probably spend some time focusing on a few weeks from now.



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