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July 24, 2012



Matt, I've been wondering about this for some time (since before the Ipad!). Yes, a lot of screen have a wide screen aspect ratio but what shape leads for the best reading? Can users handle a very wide block or do their eyes get tired? Does having text or widgets down the sides make people's eye's wander?

Marc Machielse

When will technophiles realise that just because something is technically possible it does not mean it is sensible to do?

When will technophiles realise that quite some websites actually follow design principles, which tend to be sensible as well?

Good to ask a question. Better to do some actual thinking afterwards. Perhaps a search for readability + line length may help?

Johannes Baiter

Most people I know with a widescreen at high resolutions rarely have their browser maximized. I, personally, use two 16:10 monitors that are rotated (90°) and I absolutely loathe websites that force a widescreen-design.
All that put aside, I agree with Marc, from a point of view were readability counts most, these sorts of designs are way friendlier on the eyes.

Matthew Hurst

@Marc Machielse - using more screen doesn't mean having longer lines spanning a wider column. Think of the evolution of television - widescreen was adopted there and, amazingly, textual information and other non video data has been adapted to that presentation format (think of news programmes). I'm a big fan of negative space (what designers call the empty spaces that form part of design), but I would also like to know what *opportunities* are seen in these wider screens. For example, I find all the advertising that clusters up the flow of reading to be horrible from a design perspective. It is, in fact, designed to make for poor reading. Why not explore how the additional horizontal space could be used instead?


Ee don't all use widescreen monitors on the internet. Some of us have to use 1280x1024 or even 1024x768 screens for the web (even if we have larger/wide screens on other machines for development)

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