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  1. #26
    SitePoint Wizard creole's Avatar
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    Psalzer...remember that resolution has almost nothing to do with the monitor. It's strictly a hardware setting inside the computer. It's based on the video card and the processor. The only time the monitor is included in the equation is if the refresh rate you set the resolution to cannot be handled by the monitor.
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  2. #27
    SitePoint Wizard
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    Originally posted by creole
    remember that resolution has almost nothing to do with the monitor
    Huh? All monitor sizes have "standard" resolutions appropriate to their size -- 800x600 for 15", 1024x768 for 17", 1280x1024 for 19", 1600x1200 for 21", etc.

  3. #28
    SitePoint Wizard creole's Avatar
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    No they don't.

    While those figures might be the best resolution for a certain size monitor, there is nothing to prevent a user from choosing any combination of resolution and refresh rate that their monitor/video card will support.

    When installing a new OS, it starts out at 640x480, even Macs I think do that. It's up to the user to change it. That's one reason why so many people (proportionately) have lower resolutions. They just never change it.
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  4. #29
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    anyone ever wonder why monitors are still set at 640x480??? maybe designers need to start pushing manufacturers to change it to at least 800x600.....

  5. #30
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    Actually, most new branded PCs come installed with Windows set @ 800x600 or 1024x768 resolution, which will help to make the 640x480 browser stats even less significant over time.

    When Windows XP is installed, it automatically increases the resolution to 800x600 or 1024x768 depending on the detected capabilities of your monitor.

    Thus, more and more new PC users will be running at a higher resolution as time wears on.

    I certainly am not going to waste my time designing for 640x480 users, just in the same way that I'm not going to support IE3 or NS3 (or maybe even NS4, I haven't decided). These settings/browsers will be detected, and those visitors provided with a guide to how to download & update a browser, and also how to increase their screen resolution a notch or two.

    You can't hold their hands for ever - these underspec'd users need to be told that they are missing out on a much better browsing experience.

    This benefits both parties - they get a better Net experience, we get less old browsers and low screen resolutions to cater for.

    In some ways, you could argue that these low-spec users are holding back the visual & technological development of the Net.

    Don't get me wrong - I am not an advocate of super-pretty sites with hundreds of kilobytes of useless images per page or unnecessary flash animations everywhere, but IMHO it is very important to have enough available screen space to be able to use whitespace and other basic layout components effectively, and this is sadly limited at 640x480.

    However, there is one forseeable problem with all this - PDAs. Modern PDAs based on Windows CE 3 or 2002 have a screen res of 240x320 (which some of us may remember as VGA Mode X, albeit the wrong way round), and internet browsing is becoming increasingly popular on these devices. So, when these start to become significantly common (as far as browser stats go) we may all have some thinking to do.

    Hopefully by that time their resolution will have at least doubled to 640x480 or greater, which should make life a bit easier, but I foresee problems in the future because of this.


    M@rco

  6. #31
    . Ruchir's Avatar
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    to add to it... people nowadays dont prefer small resolutions to use. so better 800x600 or 1024x768..
    Peace.

  7. #32
    SitePoint Addict goma's Avatar
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    I don't design for 640 x 480 anymore but my personal site is liquid and works at 640 (note that I said "works", not "works well" )

    My past project have all been 800 x 600. It's pretty limiting to keep to 640 and waste so much screen real estate. If I had my way, I'd design for 1024 as a minimum but I think I'll wait a few years for folks to catch up.
    http://www.soapbox101.com

  8. #33
    SitePoint Addict w3exit's Avatar
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    800 x 600 takes about half the share now .. 640 x 480 is nearly dead. check out thecounter.com for their global stats.

  9. #34
    SitePoint Wizard
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    Originally posted by w3exit
    640 x 480 is nearly dead.
    How can you say that? Even as recent as April of this year, there were still more than 13 million people using 640x480. That's a lot of people.

  10. #35
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    But that's only 3% of a total 350 million visitors tracked by TheCounter for that month, which is a pretty insignificant statistic - perhaps if you had 350 million unique hits a month you might mind about losing 13 million of them, but somehow I doubt that your (or anyone else's) site gets that number of visitors!!!


    M@rco

  11. #36
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    No, but if your site gets 3500 visitors a month, you might mind about alienating 3% of them just the same. Maybe even more. I think it depends a lot on the type of site, though. What I'd like to know is what's up with the sites where I'm finding I have a horizontal scroll at 1024x780? I'm finding more of them and it's way, way too soon for that, if the time ever even comes.

  12. #37
    SitePoint Enthusiast rreames's Avatar
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    My personal site is fluid and works well at all resolutions that I have tried. http://www.reames.org/ I am currently changing my company's site to be fluid and get away from 800x600 absolute. Use CSS and margin %'s that way at a smaller resolution a 10% margin is not too much and at larger resolutions it is enough to keep that content from taking over the browser. Browser sizer is a handy tool to check various resolutions.

    Speaking of monitor sizes and resolution. My boss here at work has bad eyesite and has a 21" monitor set at 800x600. He needs bigger fonts and less real estate while my 17" has a 1280x1024. I need more real estate. (BTW he's getting a flat panel and I am getting his 21" monitor.) Also more an more computers are selling with 15" flat panels. I guess it depends on who your target audience is and what you think they use.

  13. #38
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    Yes, I know I'm dusting off an old thread. Sorry!


    Originally posted by M@rco
    But that's only 3% of a total 350 million visitors tracked by TheCounter for that month, which is a pretty insignificant statistic - perhaps if you had 350 million unique hits a month you might mind about losing 13 million of them, but somehow I doubt that your (or anyone else's) site gets that number of visitors!!!
    If I were choosing a web designer, I would pick their brains about designing for screen resolution. It's a good way to find out if they have your best interests in mind. (You definitely wouldn't pass the test! )

    Let me explain. A sales website with only 20000 visitors monthly would be turning away 600 people a month. While this isn't a big deal for a personal or vanity website, it can certainly be a big deal for a website that maintains $20 profit per sale and converts 1% of its visitors.

    Essentially, it's losing $1500 of cold hard cash yearly because of the web designer.
    Last edited by Tatu; Aug 12, 2002 at 14:01.

  14. #39
    SitePoint Enthusiast rreames's Avatar
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    A Web site should be like water...fluid...adaptive...to what ever browser it encounters.

    -with apologies to the great Bruce Lee
    Apathetic Activist.
    reames.org

  15. #40
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    That's alright, Tatu - I understand the issues very well, and am merely stating my current stance for the site I am developing. Each site needs to be considered independently, with reference to the particular market that it targets and the potential revenue per visitor.

    I'm all for making sites work in every browser under the sun, but as a developer, I have to decide what's worth my time and not, and developing for 640x480 is not worth my time. I also think that it is important to make sure that people who are still running in 640x480 know that they are missing out - technology on the web can't progress if we're still supporting browsers and resolutions which are 4+ years out of date. I'm not trying to get everyone using IE6, but at least browsers which have a proper DOM and CSS support.

    This is an old chestnut of a debate, so I'd rather not dredge it all up again (but you can see which side I'm on)!

    I am developing my current project for IE4+/NS6+ @ 800x600 and above, and I will bodge it towards the end to make sure that it looks acceptable in NS4, but ultimately I've given up supporting that browser! Besides, I am expecting less that 0.1% of my visitors to be using it anyway....!
    Last edited by M@rco; Aug 13, 2002 at 02:51.
    MarcusJT
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  16. #41
    + platinum's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Tatu
    If I were choosing a web designer, I would pick their brains about designing for screen resolution. It's a good way to find out if they have your best interests in mind. (You definitely wouldn't pass the test! )

    Essentially, it's losing $1500 of cold hard cash yearly because of the web designer.
    Some standards have to go out the window, sure you're site displays perfectly at 640x480 in netscape 4 -- big pity it looks absolutly awful with any other res/browser because its all small and squished. You'd probably lose more customers, because believe it or not, they often are persuaded by the look and feel of the site more than being bothered by having to scroll sideways 120 pixels

    Perhaps those cruddy designers who lose the owners $1000's a month over at yahoo, cnet, sitepoint, microsoft, dell, hostrocket and nine msn could learn something from you

    Anyway, i'm sick of these discussions : fact 640x480 is almost never used any more, and i've yet to see a site which displayes at that resolution and still looks good in all others at the same time (something you can acheive at 800x600)...

    it's like telling gaming manufacturers to stop making games that don't run on older computers because it's unfair even though newer ones can display and perform much better.

  17. #42
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    Originally posted by platinum
    Some standards have to go out the window, sure you're site displays perfectly at 640x480 in netscape 4 -- big pity it looks absolutly awful with any other res/browser because its all small and squished. You'd probably lose more customers, because believe it or not, they often are persuaded by the look and feel of the site more than being bothered by having to scroll sideways 120 pixels

    ---snip---

    Anyway, i'm sick of these discussions : fact 640x480 is almost never used any more, and i've yet to see a site which displayes at that resolution and still looks good in all others at the same time (something you can acheive at 800x600)...

    it's like telling gaming manufacturers to stop making games that don't run on older computers because it's unfair even though newer ones can display and perform much better.
    I agree - well put! End of argument (enough already)!
    MarcusJT
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  18. #43
    SitePoint Addict goma's Avatar
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    One problem I've been experiencing with screen resolution is that designing for liquid layout with CSS tends to limit the browsers that will display it properly to the latest ones around. I'm not talking about NN4, which I don't design for. I've got IE5 loaded as a default test browsers for IE and some layouts I've seen send me to a "sorry, you need a better browsers" page with the content still visible. This is of course how web standards are suppose to work but I was surprised that something like IE5 couldn't deal with it.

    IMHO, designing for liquid layout in CSS can be limiting as well and may not be the best solution. I used to think that this layout style was the answer to resolution differences, but now I see it as an option that works but one that needs careful consideration. Of course that could just be the result of my sloppy CSS.
    http://www.soapbox101.com

  19. #44
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    I am quite astonished that any site is blocking IE5 - that's mad!! What's the site?
    MarcusJT
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  20. #45
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    1024x768 is just over 2.5x the screen area of 640x480, so content that looks great when it fills a browser window maximised at 640x480 resolution will look bare and empty when viewed at 1024x768.

    Are there ANY commercial sites which still work at 640x480?

    Anyway, just as some users choose not to upgrade their browsers or increase their desktop resolution, I choose to not support them!
    MarcusJT
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  21. #46
    + platinum's Avatar
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    Actually.. while I hate to admit it for some strange reason (well probably because they do want to support anything and everything) AOL's bleak and dreary site is 640x480

  22. #47
    The doctor is in... silver trophy MarcusJT's Avatar
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    Originally posted by platinum
    ...bleak and dreary...
    You said it!

    Although it's not fair to blame it all on the 640x480 site requirements, it sure doesn't help!
    MarcusJT
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  23. #48
    SitePoint Addict goma's Avatar
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    oh oh oh...my apologies. The layout I mentioned fails in NN6 in Win98, not IE5 in Win98.

    http://bluerobot.com/web/layouts/layout3.html

    I wanted to use this but the NN6 compatiblity was something I wanted as well.
    http://www.soapbox101.com

  24. #49
    Super Ninja Monkey Travis's Avatar
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    CSS to the rescue! (I hope) Couldn't you set a fluid size and make the site work in 640x480 and also set max-width to a fixed size so the text wouldn't expand too far?
    Travis Watkins - Hyperactive Coder
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  25. #50
    + platinum's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Trav
    CSS to the rescue! (I hope) Couldn't you set a fluid size and make the site work in 640x480 and also set max-width to a fixed size so the text wouldn't expand too far?
    Yeah I guess you could -- but it would still look pretty aweful

    The best method would just be detect the useragent beforehand and give these people who live in the past some cut down version of your site


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