Do we really care about 800×600 people?
For the past few years, I have created blogs and websites that are fixed width, and fit inside an 800×600 screen resolution. Basically I’d center my stuff and make it no wider than 760px or so….
My question, is how many people care about this? Is the percentage nowadays so minimal for people using this screen size, that we can target ours for the 1024×768 or wider folk?
I’m looking to do a reboot on my blog, and wanted to know if I should shoot wider or not.
This isn’t really a WP related support topic, and has been discussed on several occasions if you had searched.
And for the record, I’m currently addressing this post on my old laptop that only supports 800×600.
You should look at your stats for guidance. Some sites get 80% of their users at 800×600, some (tech blogs, etc.) get only about 5%, you should take a look and see how many users you’d be alienating. If it’s not a lot, then yeah, bring them out of the stone age
“You should look at your stats for guidance.”
How do the stats show you that? Which stats? Apache?
Google Analytics of my own traffic has about 13% at 800×600, 46% at 1024×768, and the rest > 1024 … I get a lot of search-based traffic, as opposed to regular readers, so I’m inclined to view it as an almost random sample. Were I redesigning for increased width, I’d shoot for a layout no wider than 960 or there ’bouts, to support the 1024 majority while allowing room for scrollbars and a bit of window tiling. But your mileage will most definitely vary.
I create for a variety of audiences. Especially when a site is read a lot in the former Eastern block, 800 x 600 still is an issue.
Also, even I still use a 15″ screen, just bought a new one at that, conceded with a 1024 x 768 solution, but anything larger than the 15″ is mighty uncomfy with my workplace situation. So, don’t assume that even all pros will be on 17″ or 19″ screens. There is a decided “end” to what is possible for people not working in architectonically configurable offices.
That said, either I try to go for a fluid design, or I really look hard and long at the server stats. Often I offer a switching possibility, so that those who want to accommodate a lower solution have the chance to switch the theme to one geared to that screen width. As this is usually a “standard plugin” with many if not all blog and CMS softwares, I see no problem in the topic. I just offer the possibility to accommodate and well is well.
IMO, you should always keep those that use the 800×600 res in mind. Not just because they don’t want to use anything higher than that, but maybe because their eyes can’t adjust to the font sizes and text in general in the higher res settings.
I’m one of those people. =P But like lhk mentioned, fluid layouts would be the best goal to shoot for when making layouts. I don’t usually make fluid layouts, but that’s because I’m not a “professional theme maker” anyways lol.
I usually just make it for 800×600, because that’s what I’m used to designing for. =P So I guess what I’m saying is, build them to accommodate the “handicapped” too. What I mean by that is, those with some “eye problems” or whatever. =)
P.S. Also, as an 800×600 res user, I hate the dang scroll bars at the bottom of the page lmao.. But that’s expected though, when someone builds for anything higher..
P.S.S I know my blog looks like hell in some browsers and stuff, but I’m in the process of making a theme..and hopefully it will display better then the one I’m using now. =)
good points resiny.
weblogs inc doesn’t worry about 800 x 600
I agree with spencerp: I know a lot of computer users > 45 years old who have problems with 1024×768.
If your intended target audiance is the under-40’s, this should not be an issue, though as lhk mentionned, some users are still on 15″ screens (be it CRT or LCD’s) but all 15 inchers I have seen can do 1024×768.
From there, the implementation path is up to you.
I hate making themes 800×600 compatible. I also hate making them IE compatible. But I do. Because there’s too many folks still using both to alienate them.
If you don’t care if people read your site, then do what you want. If you want people to read, I’d consider their needs. I don’t think this is any different than having a bbq, where you know some people coming are vegetarians. Are you going to provide for them, or not? It might be extra effort, but it need not comprise design for a blog.
I think the majority of users are using IE, rather than Firefox or another browser.
Also, to chime in, yes, I think any site or blog should be 800×600 compatible. You’d be surprised at how many people still use that resolution.
I personally think it depends on your audience, I recently started my own site using WP ( http://www.joeblog.ca/blog ) and designed it for a miniumum 1024 x 768 assuming most of the people I plan to have on my site when its finished are going to be a little more web saavy.
Maybe a websites target audience should determine its size.
JoeyLomanto, are you saying that because I still get great functionality out of my ibook that only operates at 800×600 (and won’t budget a new laptop purchase until PhotoShop CS is universal binary) that I’m not web savvy?
Designs wider than 800 are still compatible with 800×600 monitors, they simply have a horizontal scroll bar. Just like all the other users have a vertical scrollbar when the page is a skinny column that goes down and down. Somethin’ to think about.
I’d like to see more fluid-width themes, with static-width columns but flexible main-content-area.
I much prefer fluid-width themes in general. Of course, I have a 1680 wide screen, so people designing for a fixed width of 800 take less than half my screen. I find that quite annoying and generally don’t read those blogs.
Design your theme to stretch as needed. If you want to make 800 wide a minimum, that’s your call, but don’t make it a maximum as well. Fixed width is the tool of the devil! 🙂
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