Change Font Size and Face

The font size used on my site scales quite well to your browser's window, and so does the font face used (serif for larger, sans-serif for smaller screens). Still, you may prefer to set your own, custom size and face for viewing wrotniak.net. Why not?

To change the font attributes, use the buttons in the yellow box. You will need to allow cookies and JavaScript (but not Java!) from wrotniak.net for this to work! (See the disclosure below.)

The [Custom] button allows you to name a particular font face, or or you can click on one of the font names listed in the box (see Details for more on that.)

Note: if you now revisit a page which your browser keeps cached, you will have to refresh the view in order to see the changes.

Disclosure

In order for this to work, my pages must "know" what your selection was. This is done by storing two cookies on your computer. These contain two pieces of information:

  • I've been to wrotniak.net in the past
  • I've selected a given font size and face there

This information is not shared with any other party or Web site, it also does not contain any data which may be used to identify you.

Obviously, if your browser is set to not accept cookies, font settings become unavailable. All other functionality of the site remains unaffected.

Perhaps 95% of Web pages send you cookies without asking for any permission. Most commercial cookies are used to trace your browsing from one site (or page) to another. I don't do that.

If you wish to remove my cookies from your computer, just click on Remove Cookies above. If you do that, my pages will use the font depending on your browser's window size.

The remainder of this page is for the people who like to tweak their system, so it may be safely skipped, unless you belong to that group.

Details

All browsers allow you to specify what font faces to use when a Web page requests to be drawn in serif or sans-serif. Many users do not bother to set these defaults, therefore I am providing a way to specify a particular font face in which you would like to view my site.

This can be done by clicking on the [Custom] button and specifying any font name, as long as that font is installed on your system. If it is not (check the spelling!), your computer will use some substitution; it may even know which family to use. The display on top of the box will still show whatever you've requested; there is no reliable way for a script to know if a font is actually available.

As an alternative, some font faces can be selected explicitly by clicking on names below the buttons.

Windows users: Constantia, Cambria, Calibri, and Candara come only with Windows Vista (or 7). They are clean, attractive and very readable, surpassing any previous Windows fonts.

If you are running an older version of Windows, you can still download these fonts free as a part of the Microsoft PowerPoint Viewer (see here). If you do not want the viewer, install it, copy the fonts into a safe place, and then uninstall the software. The fonts are yours to keep, and they are really worth the effort.

Otherwise, on the XP you have Georgia and Verdana, both looking quite good in screen sizes. Just make sure to activate font smoothing (off by default on the XP), which makes most fonts look much better, especially on LCD screens.

Mac users under OS X 10.4 or higher have Georgia and Verdana installed as essential fonts.

Linux: I don't think most distributions have the fonts listed above, but you can always use the [Custom] button to specify the exact font you want. After all, you do it only once, as the choice is persistent between sessions.

Compatibility

The JavaScript and HTML code has been tested under Windows XP, Vista, and 7 on current versions of Firefox, Opera, Google Chrome, Safari, and Internet Explorer. It also works with older (if not too old) versions of these applications, as it uses only standard features. It will not work on phone/PDA browsers, which ignore font attributes specified in Web documents.

By the way, the older Microsoft Internet Explorer does not render my and icons in page links. The program is incompatible with the Web standards (more exactly: CSS), and while the problem has been documented four years ago at least, Microsoft fixed it only recently.


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Posted 2008/03/12; last updated 2013/11/15 Copyright © 2008-2013 by J. Andrzej Wrotniak