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Have a look at this page.

<rant>
This seems to be the thing lately to take fonts in colours that were easy to read and make them lighter so that they look washed out. It may be prettier to look at, but it is certainly not easy to read. I'm 62 and my eyes don't focus as well as they used to and washing out the fonts is not helping in the least.
</rant>

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Last Post by AssertNull
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  • 1
    Dani 1,665   1 Year Ago

    For a long time, it's been a web design no-no to use black fonts on a white background. I don't know the specific reason, but it just looks "off" ... DaniWeb has been using grey fonts for well over a decade. I do agree, though, that the Google example linked … Read More

  • 2
    ddanbe 2,720   1 Year Ago

    @AssertNull: Good old Paint can come to the rescue here. Took a PrintScreen, pasted it in Paint, Zoomed in twice and used the pipette to suck up the color of the quotation mark at the beinning of a quote. I got an RGB value of 51,51,51 (0,0,0 would be completely … Read More

  • 2
    cereal 1,524   1 Year Ago

    Hi, in addition to **Ddanbe's** suggestion: with Google Chrome, right click a word in this post, choose **Inspect**, it will open the *Web Developer Console,* click on **Computed:** from there you get all the style information about the inspected element. Read More

  • 4

    >I know that you're about to respond with same argument Well that's a tad presumptuous, but why not? I'll quote myself. > one of my main rules is that if there is no reason to alienate a potential customer, don't do it. What target demographic do they lose by making … Read More

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<rant>
Knowing Google, their spying and fact that they want to put spybox in your network. I'm pretty happy that you can't see the "Pre-Order" button.
</rant>

As when it comes to the topic, designers are paid to make website beautiful not visible for everybody. When I'm looking at faraway board, I can't really complain at my myopia (near-sightedness), people tell me to get glasses. I guess we live in the world where we need to adapt, or fail. Luckily we don't get eaten alive, like in bad old times.

Edited by Aeonix

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I think poor contrast is on the up, even in pro sites. Never understood it myself. I get dark grey on white / cream, but mid-tone grey on light grey or hued equivalents? Odd. Turning back accessibility.

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It also depends on the target audience, and the marketing staff that determines what comprises that audience. At 62, they obviously feel you are no longer part of their target, and they no longer need to cater to you (or rather, your age group or particular vision acuity)... ageism on the internet.. sorry :(

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As when it comes to the topic, designers are paid to make website beautiful not visible for everybody. When I'm looking at faraway board, I can't really complain at my myopia (near-sightedness), people tell me to get glasses. I guess we live in the world where we need to adapt, or fail.

I don't understand this attitude at all. It seems completely counterproductive for a web designer. If I am trying to sell this WiFi product and I hire a web designer to get people to buy my WiFi product, if Jim can't read it, Jim isn't going to buy it. By using those fonts, I've lost Jim as a potential customer. Why would Jim "adapt" to me? I'm trying to sell my product to Jim. I want to make it as easy and pleasant as possible for him to learn about my product. Thus if I want him as a customer, I need to adapt to him, not vice-versa. If I don't, he'll simply go to one of my competitors.

Edited by AssertNull: Too wordy. Trimmed content. Point was made in first paragraph.

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It also depends on the target audience, and the marketing staff that determines what comprises that audience. At 62, they obviously feel you are no longer part of their target, and they no longer need to cater to you (or rather, your age group or particular vision acuity)... ageism on the internet.. sorry :(

True in many cases. However, one of my main rules is that if there is no reason to alienate a potential customer, don't do it. What target demographic do they lose by making readable fonts for folks without perfect vision? Or simply have an alternate version of the website with a "Can't read this? Click here" option? It's not always a zero-sum game.

In addition, is there not a browser plug-in that can detect and change hard-to read font combinations (i.e. grey font, light grey background) to something easier to read (black font, white background)? Seems like it would be fairly easy to write such a plug-in.

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For a long time, it's been a web design no-no to use black fonts on a white background. I don't know the specific reason, but it just looks "off" ... DaniWeb has been using grey fonts for well over a decade. I do agree, though, that the Google example linked to really takes it to the extreme.

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Black on white can certainly cause issues for some people, for example those with Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome. As a teacher, I was advised that certain students had to have coloured background paper, such as pale yellow or blue or be supplied with a coloured acetate sheet to place over the white paper. Another issue is the "glare" that comes from a brilliant white screen - this can cause extreme eye-strain in some. So the issues may be varied - pronounced contrast can cause the reader to see text dancing over the screen. Try reading a book when you've got a size 10 hangover and desperately tired and you'll start to get the idea.

Toning down the white background a little bit and using dark grey instead of black font, seem to be more appropriate (for me), although black on very light grey background should be ok I suppose.

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DaniWeb has been using grey fonts for well over a decade.

No one has ever accused me of having good color perception and this proves it. Looks black to me. When I was writing my post, I said "Hmm, this is easy to read" and used Daniweb's black-on-white design as my example of something easy to read. It STILL looks black to me. I downloaded the page and opened up Dreamweaver to try to figure out the exact color it was. I now realize how bad I am in Dreamweaver. Couldn't even figure out how to do that so I'll take your word that it isn't black. Not that I was doubting you, but it would have taken me another five hours to actually find the font color to see for myself. So much for the fancy Computer Science degree.

I still like my plugin idea or an option for the user to change the font colors or font size to whatever they want them to be with a nice "Can't read this? Click here" link. Thus I can choose black on white, Jim and Dani can pick whatever shades of grey they want, little kids can pick pink on red, and whoever is pranking Diafol can gaslight him into thinking he's hallucinating when in fact they've sneakily picked the option to have the text float around in random directions.

I used to read an awesome blog, some of the best, most thoughtful articles on the Iraq war imaginable, but it was really annoying because the author stuck a "cool" photo of himself in all his Rambo gear in the background. It WAS a cool photo, but it made it impossible to read the actual articles.

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@AssertNull: Good old Paint can come to the rescue here.
Took a PrintScreen, pasted it in Paint, Zoomed in twice and used the pipette to suck up the color of the quotation mark at the beinning of a quote. I got an RGB value of 51,51,51 (0,0,0 would be completely black)

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Hi,

in addition to Ddanbe's suggestion: with Google Chrome, right click a word in this post, choose Inspect, it will open the Web Developer Console, click on Computed: from there you get all the style information about the inspected element.

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I don't understand this attitude at all. It seems completely counterproductive for a web designer. If I am trying to sell this WiFi product and I hire a web designer to get people to buy my WiFi product, if Jim can't read it, Jim isn't going to buy it. By using those fonts, I've lost Jim as a potential customer. Why would Jim "adapt" to me? I'm trying to sell my product to Jim. I want to make it as easy and pleasant as possible for him to learn about my product. Thus if I want him as a customer, I need to adapt to him, not vice-versa. If I don't, he'll simply go to one of my competitors.

Well, sadly enough, target is majority, not everybody. When candidates for President go on a race, they wish for 100% of reach, but have requirement of 50.00001%. Same for advertisement, they surely wish everybody could see and read their page, but why risk? Let's make sure only majority reaches the product. They'd rather choose "surely 40%" than "maybe 100%".

I know that you're about to respond with same argument, I'm not playing devil's lawyer here. Just putting some insight from their point of view. I still remain with #FFF and #222 for life.

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I know that you're about to respond with same argument

Well that's a tad presumptuous, but why not? I'll quote myself.

one of my main rules is that if there is no reason to alienate a potential customer, don't do it. What target demographic do they lose by making readable fonts for folks without perfect vision?

No one is going to buy this WiFi system and say, "This font is the real clincher. I'm going to buy this because it makes me feel young and with it and makes me feel good about my eagle-like eyesight. If they had used a font that could be read by old people and folks with bad eyesight, I wouldn't buy it because then I'd feel less special." Yet they HAVE lost the "folks with bad eyesight" demographic.

If you're marketing motorcycles and the cool new sex, drugs, and rock and roll nightclub, you're targeting healthy youth looking for excitement, so you might put in some cool-looking hard to read font surrounded by flames and blinking lights or whatever and you've just lost the epileptic and senior citizen market. Oh well. Changing your ads to take the flames and loud noises out to target them might well lose you your main target audience and you'd have a point.

A WiFi product ad that uses fonts people with bad eyesight can't read and that won't look "cool" even to the people who CAN read it? Different story.

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