[pmwiki-users] A question about skins

Andrew Standfield andy at scruffyco.com
Mon Aug 7 16:05:46 CDT 2006

65 characters, or 10-15 words. When lines are longer, it takes a  
greater amount of time for the brain to find the start of a new line  
when your eyes snap back to the left.

It's also been shown that longer horizontal lines of text make people  
less likely to even read the given text.

You'll notice that it's not just something that PmWiki skin  
developers do, but is prominent throughout the web:

I run at 1792x1344 and if I kept my browser at full-screen, things  
like the google "Sponsored Links" would be so far away from the  
search result text that the would be more whitespace in the middle of  
my screen there is actual text on the results. The typical paragraph  
would string out to one entire line if not wrapped.

Andy Standfield

On Aug 7, 2006, at 1:27 PM, Marc Cooper wrote:

>  said...
>> I have been playing with (well looking at mostly) some of the  
>> skins at
>> http://www.pmwiki.org/wiki/Cookbook/ and I have a question.
>> I have quite a hi-res screen that I run at 1600x1200, many of the
>> skins (as a result?) seem to only use a small portion of the width of
>> my browser window.  For example the "Lean Skin" uses only about half
>> of the width of my browser window even though I'm running the browser
>> at somewhat less than full screen.
>> Other skins do use the fulll window area.
>> Is this just a minor fault in the design of those skins that don't  
>> use
>> the full width or am I missing something obvious?  The screen shot
>> examples of "Lean Skin" don't look at all like what I'm seeing, they
>> show very narrow borders either side of the 'body'.  I get borders of
>> ten or fifteen cm.
> Yup, empirical typesetting experience - over a few centuries - has
> determined that the optimal length of a line of alphabetic text is
> approximately 65 characters, so, many skins will be designed to limit
> the width of the reading column.
> When you use a big monitor, you are not obliged to run it full screen
> ;-)
> -- 
> Best,
> Marc
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