Re: A property for font antialiasing control on Mac OS X

On Wed, Jul 17, 2013 at 5:58 PM, L. David Baron <> wrote:

> On Wednesday 2013-07-17 17:04 -0700, Rik Cabanier wrote:
> > Other cases where you might want to turn off anti-aliasing:
> > - animations
> > when animating text, you don't want to anti-alias because of performance
> > and also because subpixel AA will cause "jiggling" of characters when you
> > move a text run
> The jiggling is a result of subpixel *positioning* of text (which
> also requires re-rasterizing for the different subpixel positions,
> which integer shifts don't).  I think that's independent of
> antialiasing.

It depends how you do subpixel AA. I agree that in most cases you won't be
able to tell the difference.

> > - content that will end up in a 3d transform
> Implementations already know how to disable subpixel AA here;
> authors don't need to give hints.

I think you misunderstood.
What I meant is that if you have text that *is going to be *animated,
transitioned or will have a 3d transform applied to it, you want to disable
subpixel positioning. Otherwise you will notice a change in rendering when
it is animated.

Other cases where an author might want this, is if the element that
contains the text:
- becomes transparent
- has a filter applied to it
- has blending applied to it

> > - match canvas text
> > Text in canvas never uses subpixel-AA (although there are some browsers
> > that allow it) and an author might want to match HTML text with Canvas
> text
> I don't think this is a strong use case.

Unsure. How about text in an SVG image?

> > Maybe for background-clip you might want the text to be a hard clip and
> not
> > antialiased?
> I don't think antialiasing of text will ever cause it to extend
> outside a clip that it's in.

Doesn't background-clip use the text as a clipping path for the background
image? If so, you might not want blurry edges

> > Because of transition, animations and 3d transform, I don't believe that
> > this will be a temporary solution (unless of course display technology
> > advances so much that subpixel-AA is no longer needed)
> I think in the long run, as display densities increase, we may well
> be moving towards subpixel AA no longer being needed.  But that's
> probably a long ways off.  I don't think your other examples are use
> cases for author control (nor have I heard of such author control
> ever being provided on platforms other than Mac).
> -David
> --
> 𝄞   L. David Baron                  𝄂
> 𝄢   Mozilla                    𝄂

Received on Thursday, 18 July 2013 02:40:21 UTC