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Re: line length and myth of the fold


From: Patrick H. Lauke
Date: Apr 18, 2008 12:00PM

Christophe Strobbe wrote:

> At 13:51 18/04/2008, Karl Groves wrote:

>> Not to totally derail this thread, but I'd like to point out that the belief
>> that long lines of text is bad is rather unfounded. I've read a number of
>> usability studies which have come to the conclusion that reading performance
>> (speed and accuracy) does not differ significantly between line lengths[1].

> I'd be very interested in the other studies you know, since line
> length is now in WCAG 2.0 (SC 1.4.8:
> <http://www.w3.org/TR/2007/WD-UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20-20071211/complete.html#visual-audio-contrast-visual-presentation>;).

I think it's worth jumping in here to say that it's not really about
speed/accuracy/performance for users with potential cognitive
disabilities. I'll hazard a guess that the usability studies mentioned
didn't take that into account.

I've recently discussed the 80 characters thing at length with Gregg
Vanderheiden from the WCAG WG.


Also note that the very latest draft is here

Patrick H. Lauke
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Co-lead, Web Standards Project (WaSP) Accessibility Task Force
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