Use It or Lose It

Usability guru Jakob Nielsen has updated his Top Ten Web Design Mistakes. But the current list looks much like
earlier ones. On the list are the usual suspects such as: small
font size/low contrast between text and background, JavaScript
for links, and frozen layouts with fixed page widths.

The default MovableType CSS/templates have these problems so
you may have noticed the first thing I did was change the font
sizes and text/background colors. I haven’t had the opportunity
to change the frozen layout/fixed page width yet but plan to
switch to a “liquid” design as soon as I can.

I am always amazed by the number of sites that use extremely
small gray fonts on colored backgrounds. These people must use
640 X 480 black and white screens or something because if you’re
like me, using a 17-inch screen at 1280 X 1024 resolution their
sites are almost unreadable. I am constantly having to increase
the browser display font size and am getting tired of doing that.
Folks, edit the CSS to remove fixed font sizes. It’s not hard.
You can do it. For example, if your CSS looks like this:

   margin: 0;
   /* setting border: 0 hoses ie5 win window inner well border */
   padding: 0;
   font-family: verdana, 'trebuchet ms', sans-serif;
   font-size: 12px;

All you need to do is change the font-size: 12px;
to something like font-size: medium; and you are
good to go. Now, that’s not hard is it? By doing so, you could be
solving the number one problem in bad web site design. Not only
that, you make it easier for your readers to see your writing. I
think that’s a GoodThing(tm).


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