How the Preferences have grown

2007-01-10 22:51:15 UTC

BBEdit Lite 6.1.2 vs TextWrangler 2.2:

BBEdit Lite's Preferences window is 461 by 348 points. TextWrangler's Preferences window is 750 by 572 points.

3 Responses to “How the Preferences have grown”

  1. Jesper Says:

    What amazes me about this is that TextWrangler still uses the OS 9-ish layout. You’d think they be used to toolbars and tabs views by now.

  2. Nicholas Riley Says:

    Because, obviously, a preferences UI that is not very keyboard-navigable (or one that doesn’t let you see everything at once) is an improvement, right?

    I really dislike how the OS X UI has grown to favor gigantic windows. It’s not that long ago that Apple sold the iBook with 1024×768 resolution (and I have one, even). That was one of my favorite Mac OS features from way back – most applications were very careful to not use too much screen space for anything.

    At least most apps (those I use, at least :) let you hide toolbars and other screen-wasting crap, which is better than on certain other platforms. (I recall trying to use X11 apps under NetBSD on my SE/30 at 512×342…)

  3. Peter Hosey Says:

    I actually prefer TextWrangler’s preferences, mainly because the controls aren’t tiny—they’re regular-size controls. I don’t see how either one is less keyboard-navigable, since neither one supports Full Keyboard Access. (Only the list of panes and the text fields accept focus, in both apps.)

    OS X’s increase in control size is probably due to increased resolution of displays. The screen on the original Mac, as all Mac gurus know, was 72 dpi. My monitor—a 17″ Apple Studio Display LCD—is 96 dpi, and some monitors are even denser than that. Upping the menubar from 20px to 22px and the system font from 12pt to 13pt makes sense.

    When resolution independence comes (*FANFARE*!), OS X will probably be fixed at either 72 or 96 dpi (the latter being Windows’ choice of assumed resolution). You’ll input your screen’s physical size if OS X can’t guess (blog post coming on that!), and OS X will set the scale factor to (your dpi)/(target dpi).

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