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Text is fuzzy in some browsers, sharp in others
ocon




msg:4517518
 1:45 pm on Nov 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

I like to keep my website very fast, and among the many things I do is to use text stars instead of images for uses such as ratings and reviews. Specifically I use the ★ character.

However, I notice that this character is rendered very sharp in some browsers while kind of fuzzy and muddled in others, independent of operating system.

What causes this and is there anything I can do to ensure it stays sharp?

 

lucy24




msg:4517628
 9:48 pm on Nov 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

Anything involving text display is going to vary according to browser, OS, and individual computer. Different browsers have different rules for font substitution and different ways of sizing characters.

:: detour to dec/hex translator ::

Oh, that one. Hex 2605, UTF-8 E2 98 85. I suppose it's no use suggesting an asterisk instead? This unicode block was imported complete from the old Zapf Dingbats font. So you should expect to see good font support on Macs, not-so-good on Windows. And this, in turn, means that font substitution gets involved.

Have you considered Option 3? Make an image and save it in data-image format. There are www sites that will do it for you. The filesize will be about 30-40% bigger than an image file-- but it doesn't involve a separate browser request, so you should come out ahead. Data images will not work on MSIE <=7.

Option 4 is SVG, but that's on the distant horizon. (It was supposed to be one selling point of xhtml instead of html, but they never got around to developing the xml side.)

drhowarddrfine




msg:4517690
 3:21 am on Nov 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

Option 4 is SVG, but that's on the distant horizon. (It was supposed to be one selling point of xhtml instead of html, but they never got around to developing the xml side.)

I would inform my staff to quit using it immediately but I'd have to go back in time about 5 years to do so. So I'll just inform Jeff Schiller of the news.

lucy24




msg:4517700
 4:36 am on Nov 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

Yes, of course the format exists :) What I meant is that it can't be incorporated transparently into (X)HTML, which was part of the original scheme. In my case it would have been a way of representing characters so obscure that unicode never bothered with them. Some of my browsers will recognize some kinds of xml entities, but svg images? Nuh-uh. Browser becomes resolutely deaf, dumb and blind.

rainborick




msg:4517720
 5:59 am on Nov 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

You might consider using CSS sprites and make the star image one of the sprites. No additional HTTP request required.

drhowarddrfine




msg:4517777
 1:49 pm on Nov 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

@lucy24 - The only browser we had problems with is IE. Having problems with IE is expected and the norm as you know but we never had problems with SVG otherwise.

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