W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-ig@w3.org > July to September 2001

RE: Font sizes

From: Hewitt, Denise <Denise.Hewitt@idea.com>
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 2001 00:17:59 -0400
Message-ID: <9CAB32B1B967BA49B0B7675A02EBB93039FD59@TX047MX2KPROD01.idea.com>
To: "'Charles McCathieNevile '" <charles@w3.org>, "'Graham Oliver '" <graham_oliver@yahoo.com>
Cc: "'Jamie Mackay '" <Jamie.Mackay@mch.govt.nz>, "'w3c-wai-ig@w3.org '" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
 For what it is worth, Verdana (sans-serif) was designed for use on
computers, and scales better than comperable fonts such as Arial. There was
also some good recent font research posted on CHIWEB. I'll check with my
usability specialist to see if its still available online.

Best regards,

Denise

-----Original Message-----
From: Charles McCathieNevile
To: Graham Oliver
Cc: Jamie Mackay; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Sent: 8/29/2001 7:32 PM
Subject: RE: Font sizes

Yes, it seems we are in agreement.

THe thread began with a question about where the research was that
proved the
well-known fact that sans-serif fonts were better for people. And I
think
exhausted itself on the fact that there isn't such proof, becuase the
well-known fact isn't actually true.

Designers should know the accessibility constraints, and as you and
Jamie say
beyond that they should design. Stylistic effects aid comprehension,
when
used well.

Cheers

Charles

On Wed, 29 Aug 2001, Graham Oliver wrote:

  Hi Charles
  This conversation however gets to the heart of a very
  important issue for me.
  We need (I believe) to let the 'designers design' as
  much as we possibly can.
  That way we can work with them towards accessibility
  for everyone rather than appear to be hindering them
  in some way.
  I am not going to go into a web developer shop and
  tell the developers that they shouldn't choose the
  fonts that they (or more importantly their clients)
  want.
  Sure, I will let them know all the issues about
  accessibility of fonts and font sizes but that is not
  the same as saying they can't make informed decisions.

  There are many important issues to get across and
  (IMHO) the more I can let the 'designers design'  the
  easier it is for me to get the accessibility message
  across.

  As an aside isn't this one of the reasons for 'User
  Style Sheets'?
  That is, if the user doesn't like what the designer
  has chosen from a group of fonts, the user can
  override them?

  Cheers
  Graham Oliver



   --- Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org> wrote: >
  I think we are getting away from the start of the
  > discussion here.
  >
  > The question was what font should be used in
  > general, and the common thread
  > of the answer is that in general it is helpful to
  > let the user decide what
  > font they like n their system and keep it, since
  > readability of fonts is
  > partially determined by technology but substantially
  > (I claimed) determined
  > by what people are used to.
  >
  > By all means use style effects that help clarify the
  > information structure -
  > this is why CSS was produced. The point is that
  > assuming one kind of font or
  > other suits all users is a fallacy - so as you point
  > out, follow
  > accessibiltiy guidelines for them. If people want
  > bland uniformity they can
  > use Lynxand PINE (as I am right now) but providing
  > content that transforms
  > gracefully to a more visual metaphor is helpful.
  >
  > cheers
  >
  > Charles McCN
  >
  > On Tue, 28 Aug 2001, Jamie Mackay wrote:
  >
  >
  >   <snip>
  >   'I agree
  >   with the others...use default and let the users
  > system choose the font'
  >   </snip>
  >
  >   While I am all for creating accessible websites, I
  > hear the sound of
  >   baby's going down the gurgler on this one.
  >
  >   I think the ability to use different fonts is an
  > important aesthetic
  >   consideration in the way I design webpages -
  > though of course these
  >   should always be set as font-families with the
  > default sans-serif as an
  >   option.
  >
  >   As long as fonts are defined using CSS and sizes
  > are defined at a
  >   reasonable size by ems or percentages I can't see
  > any reason to discard
  >   them for the rather bland uniformaty of default
  > fonts for everyone.
  >
  >   Jamie Mackay
  >
  >
  > --
  > Charles McCathieNevile
  > http://www.w3.org/People/Charles  phone: +61 409 134
  > 136
  > W3C Web Accessibility Initiative
  > http://www.w3.org/WAI    fax: +1 617 258 5999
  > Location: 21 Mitchell street FOOTSCRAY Vic 3011,
  > Australia
  > (or W3C INRIA, Route des Lucioles, BP 93, 06902
  > Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France)
  >

  =====
  'Making on-line information accessible'
  Mobile Phone : +64 25 919 724 - New Zealand
  Work Phone : +64 9 846 6995 - New Zealand
  AIM ID : grahamolivernz

  ____________________________________________________________
  Do You Yahoo!?
  Get your free @yahoo.co.uk address at http://mail.yahoo.co.uk
  or your free @yahoo.ie address at http://mail.yahoo.ie


-- 
Charles McCathieNevile    http://www.w3.org/People/Charles  phone: +61
409 134 136
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative     http://www.w3.org/WAI    fax: +1
617 258 5999
Location: 21 Mitchell street FOOTSCRAY Vic 3011, Australia
(or W3C INRIA, Route des Lucioles, BP 93, 06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex,
France)
Received on Thursday, 30 August 2001 00:18:32 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Tuesday, 19 July 2011 18:13:56 GMT