Questions tagged [readability]

The ease in which text can be understood (based on content, not formatting). Readability is not to be confused with legibility, which is the ease with which text can be read (based on formatting, not content).

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49 votes
7 answers
26k views

How long should a temporary notification (toast) appear?

For our intranet application we have little notification messages (toasts) that indicate successful operations like "information saved," "logged out" etc. Most of them are not important enough to ...
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11 votes
3 answers
6k views

How to design usable web site terms & conditions?

What are some guidelines and examples for designing usable legal terms for web sites? I know that most users don't read it, but are there innovative ways to improve readability and presentation of ...
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21 votes
5 answers
12k views

Relationship between font-size and width of container

Are there any studies done which tell us the relationship between the font size and the optimal width of the container they are in? For example, 12px font size is going to be too small in a container ...
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15 votes
3 answers
2k views

Chat arrangement question: Left or right?

I'm building a small chat. Now I see but in other chats (whatsapp, facebook mobile chat, sms ...) that the arrangement is always the same: Left: the chat partner. right: myself Why is that?
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17 votes
4 answers
17k views

What's the best way to make a user read terms and conditions before continuing a form?

What's the best way to make a user read terms and conditions before continuing a form? Structure of Form: Label1 [Textbox] Label2 [Textbox] Terms and Conditions [Textarea] Checkbox ["I agree to the ...
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18 votes
3 answers
7k views

Why not use sans-serif fonts on print design?

It's better to use sans-serif than serif fonts on the web, as their simpler letter form remain readable at low resolution. Serif fonts need more pixels to display their extra details. I was wondering ...
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20 votes
5 answers
14k views

Can text shadow enhance readability?

CSS font shadows are often used to help make text stand out (or in, or colorful, or many other fancy things.) I'm wondering if it can be used to aid readability. I know finding the right amount of ...
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26 votes
5 answers
1k views

Can you sacrifice grammar to keep instructions simple, specifically when using a(n)?

Because of the way the form is written, step-by-step in first person, it is necessary to put the a(n) to keep them grammatically correct for the Administrator case. However I feel like it makes the ...
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12 votes
3 answers
460 views

What are the best practices to design user interfaces that are going to be used under direct sunlight?

I'm designing an application that will be mostly used under direct sunlight, and I would like to know if there are some recommendations or best practices to improve usability under that conditions. ...
4 votes
7 answers
12k views

Mixed case vs all lower case...Which is more readable?

A graphic designer I hired to do my company's collateral (a very accomplished and successful designer) told me once that all lower case is often more readable than mixed case. As an example she made ...
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3 votes
2 answers
3k views

Swipe direction for read document on iPad

Is there any recommendation about the direction of swipe for an app that allow user to read PDF documents? I mean if I have to chose is better the up/down or the left/right swipe? In my own ...
18 votes
4 answers
35k views

Is using a comma as a number separator a cultural thing?

In the US, it's very common to add a comma for numbers of more than 3 digits (ex: 1,000 for one thousand ; 1,000,000 for one million ; etc.). In France though, we don't use this at all and commas are ...
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28 votes
4 answers
33k views

What is the best number of paragraph width for readability? [duplicate]

Since my current project has a lot of text/paragraph content, I consider about the readability of the website. I've seen and try to inspect any of sites that I feel have a good readability such as ...
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47 votes
6 answers
5k views

If nobody reads Privacy Policies or Terms and Conditions, why not change them?

Once I read that if you were to read all the Terms and Conditions, Privacy Policy and similar documents that you ideally need to read before using software or online services in a given year, you'd ...
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24 votes
4 answers
4k views

Readability of overlaid text on images

Text on images seems to be very popular these days, and it does look nice. However, it can be hard to control the legibility of the text. I have darkened the background, and added text-shadow, and it ...
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19 votes
4 answers
2k views

Dark screens in cars

I am a designer just preparing an app for the "in car" area. Normally we have a bunch of colors to use and we usually use dark colors on a light background. Now our client came up with some question ...
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19 votes
5 answers
938 views

Which placement of list of ingredients is most convenient for the cook?

In the process of doing the layout for a cookbook, I'm faced with the problem of placing the list of ingredients for each recipe. I've looked at several cookbooks and seen numerous approaches. I can ...
14 votes
6 answers
41k views

What default font to choose for desktop applications?

Finding the right font for an application seems to be an art. There seem to be many standards. Arial seems to be used in most applications I have seen, Segoe UI is the standard for Microsoft Windows ...
8 votes
2 answers
37k views

What is the most dyslexia friendly colour combination

Following on from this question I asked a while ago: What is the most dyslexia friendly font? I'd like now to know whether there are any colour combinations (or sets of colour combinations from ...
  • 7,818
50 votes
6 answers
8k views

Why are messages on the road printed in reverse?

After reading this question, something occurred to me that I've always wondered - but never thought to ask. Why are road messages/signs printed in reverse? (source https://xkcd.com/781/) Anytime I ...
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44 votes
13 answers
20k views

Is OK/NOK better than "fail/success"

My team is discussing how we should indicate, in a logbook, whether a specific action ended with success or not. I started putting it like timestamp | action name (fail) | description timestamp | ...
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5 votes
4 answers
1k views

Relative dates/times- Rounding and how accurate?

I was reading this question about formatting relative dates and times, but there are still some issue that I felt have not been addressed yet. I would like to: Keep relative times to just 1 unit, ...
  • 5,818
10 votes
8 answers
2k views

Hyphens or en dashes—which are more readable when used in number ranges (for North American web users)?

Is there evidence to show that number ranges are more readable using hyphens or en dashes (on digital screens for North American web users)? Wikipedia notes that, according to your style choice, you ...
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8 votes
3 answers
9k views

Grey versus white background for ease of use and readability/legibility

Many websites by default use a white background for maximum contrast (with black text) so I am wondering if there is a case for a very light grey background to be used instead because it comes up as ...
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18 votes
9 answers
2k views

When should a year be added to a timestamp?

Stack Exchange uses relative timestamps to indicate when an action occurred; a question was asked, edit was made etc. This is done as far back as "2 days ago"; anything prior to exactly 48 hours ago ...
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10 votes
5 answers
924 views

How to automatically calculate contrast

Scenario: a user can change the default design of a site by selecting a color. This color is applied to the menu background color. The problem is that I have to change the menu text color depending on ...
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3 votes
3 answers
3k views

Is white text on dark background better for usability on smartphone / tablet keyboards than the reverse?

Which is a better and usable Smart Phone or Tablet keyboard? White / light characters on Black / Dark keys on the keyboard layout. Black / Dark Grey text on the white / light grey colour keys layout. ...
3 votes
1 answer
590 views

How best to display truncated links?

I'm working on a Q&A platform, and I was wondering. Within My Account you can check your questions, answers and comments such as [Your answer] Date: [XX-XX-XX] Number of answers:[XX] ...
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1 vote
0 answers
95 views

What is the optimal line length for body copy on the web? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Ideal column width for paragraphs online We’ve always been told that lines of text should not be longer than 55 - 65 characters or thereabouts but I'm also finding studies ...
0 votes
1 answer
9k views

Why monospaced fonts are not used as frequently as serif and sans-serif fonts, outside coding?

We see sans-serif and serif fonts everywhere, from the web to printed books and newspapers. I'm wondering why monospaced fonts are not popular outside coding context? Here is a simple comparison I ...
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0 votes
2 answers
2k views

Font size for e-commerce

Recently during a usability tests almost all of our customers complained about the small font size on our website. We use: 26px for headlines 13px, bold, for navigation, product names, etc. 11px ...
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