[thelist] page width trend - 800 or 1024 or other?

Bob Meetin bobm at dottedi.biz
Thu Dec 11 10:28:18 CST 2008

Barry Woolgar wrote:
> Hello
>> Usability-wise, I don't know how people surf the web with larger
>> monitors.  Do they resize windows? (I'm talking about PC users.)
> I have a 20" monitor which runs at 1680x1050 and mostly browse full screen.
> If I'm reading a wall of text I'll just use Opera's - and now Firefox et
> al's - zoom function (ctrl+mousewheel) to make the fixed width site fit
> snugly without affecting the original layout. I can then lean back in my
> comfy chair, and read at a far more comfortable distance. I barely notice
> I'm doing it now!
> When I have to use a Mac at work I quickly get frustrated as OS X is geared
> more towards lots of layered windows so full screen use could be rarer. Not
> because of the frustration, but just due to the way the OS tends to work.
> Barry

I grant that there is an ample supply of monitors/devices out there capable of a minimum of 1024x768.  I took a look at the display resolution stats at: 
http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/default.asp . This is data but does not talk to smart design/development.  I'm probably rare these days in that I don't use 
mobile devices, they hurt my eyes, but I understand that other do and need to keep this in mind.

With my widescreen monitor I could up the resolution substantially, but again, eye strain rules (for me).  I've read many threads which talk to minimum font 
size and some suggesting not set a minimum size, let the visitor choose and this sounds fine.

However when you have to go back/forth and keep changing the zoom level in order to read site A vs site B this is a challenge. I am comfy with fluid design and 
letting the text flow as it may; not aesthetically pleasing, well I see.  Yes you can do a survey of the client's vision of his/her user community, your target 
audience. However for the small business client with little budget you need to make some educated guesses on their behalf.

To reiterate, general guidelines?


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