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View Full Version : Lion and Resolution Independence - Projected Usability




Avery1
Feb 26, 2011, 10:00 PM
I am curious if any developers who have seen Mac OS X Lion and looked closely at the reported 'resolution independence' feel that this will be a real and accessible solution to users wanting to select larger text size after Lion is released? And... would existing SL apps leverage Lion to allow resizing of fonts -- or would this require the app to be rewritten for Lion?

I am looking to purchase a new MBP 15", and am not a fan of the glossy screen on my MBP 13". Unfortunately, the matte screen is available only in a higher resolution and after many years of long days at a monitor, even the 13" MBP's native resolution I find causing me eyestrain. So, the 15" high-res monitor isn't very feasible unless Lion promises to provide alternative text sizes.

Any developer feedback on Lion's abilities to meet these types of user needs?



Avery1
Feb 28, 2011, 11:12 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_6 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8E200 Safari/6533.18.5)

Can anyone comment on how this works?

pos
May 15, 2011, 04:52 AM
I wonder the same thing...

Did you get any answer?

Any news on this as my macbook i 3 years now and need a replacement...

Actually I think of going back to a std laptop with Linux as I think Apple to quickly go up in resolution on the laptops without have the right tools in the OS to meet it. Stop using MAcbooks at least give me the choice to use an anti glare screen in a resonable resolution.

/Peo

jeanlain
May 15, 2011, 05:32 AM
Not sure if that'll answer your question, but Lion basically supports the 2X scale factor when switching the screen res to "high DPI" modes.
If works well for existing Cocoa apps, but you really need to have a high resolution display or else you would have the equivalent of a 800*600 screen.

Some interface widgets that look pixelated still need high resolution bitmaps. They look nice otherwise.

TuffLuffJimmy
May 15, 2011, 05:33 AM
From what I understand Apple has taken the easy/stupid way out of true resolution independence, RI. Instead of Vector graphics they chose to include gigantic rendered images. All this will do is take up space. I can understand using raster images for photos, like desktop backgrounds and contact pictures, but simple icons like the iTunes icon and App Store would make a lot of sense for vector images. Vector based images take up nearly no space when they are simple, like Apple's icon set, and they scale beautifully.

As for the rest of your question I expect applications will need to be at least partially reworked in order to take advantage of Apple's implementation of RI, but not as much reworking as if they implemented true independence. Likely few (read: no) developers will be willing to rework their applications for RI until there are extremely high resolution displays on the Mac consumer market and they achieve some market penetration.

Although I am bummed out in Apple's decision regarding RI I think it's probably the only realistic move they could have made. Resolution Independence can be very hard to code for. Not only would developers have to code for different resolutions they would have to code for vastly different pixel densities and to achieve usability their applications would have to scale which often causes all sorts of unexpected bugs that can be hard to fix. These problems are why most major platforms don't have any good support for RI.

jeanlain
May 15, 2011, 05:36 AM
They do provide vector pdfs for some interface widgets. But not everything can be render with vectors.

pos
May 15, 2011, 06:13 AM
Not sure if that'll answer your question, but Lion basically supports the 2X scale factor when switching the screen res to "high DPI" modes.
If works well for existing Cocoa apps, but you really need to have a high resolution display or else you would have the equivalent of a 800*600 screen.

Some interface widgets that look pixelated still need high resolution bitmaps. They look nice otherwise.

So change snow leopard on a 15" 1440 glare laptop to Lion on a 1680 anti glare laptop wont be good then?

Does it ONLY support 2x scale factor???
I did some google searching and found this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bxY1nLxrwFA
On that video it at least seems it's seamless and not 2x hard coded...


/Per-Olov

baryon
May 15, 2011, 06:47 AM
You can always lower the resolution of your display, increase text size on web pages, PFDs and email. I know it's not a real solution but it's all you can really do.

As for Lion, I doubt it has anything like resolution independence, its exactly like Snow Leopard. Giant icons won't help, as people are more concerned about text and the actual interface. Icons are big enough as they are, my Dock can be scaled to gigantic already. On a 300 DPI monitor that would still be fine. What wouldn't be fine, however, isn't icons, but text, buttons, tabs, scroll bars, the mouse and other GUI elements. I don't think Lion has done anything to solve that.

jeanlain
May 15, 2011, 12:39 PM
So change snow leopard on a 15" 1440 glare laptop to Lion on a 1680 anti glare laptop wont be good then?

Does it ONLY support 2x scale factor???
I did some google searching and found this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bxY1nLxrwFA
On that video it at least seems it's seamless and not 2x hard coded...


/Per-Olov
I don't know what version of Quartz Debug this guy is using, but it's not the one provided with Xcode 4. It doesn't enable arbitrary scale factors. It just enables the "high DPI" modes in the display preferences. Plus, what the videos shows isn't exactly seamless. It shows nothing actually, we just see launchpad not reacting well to the scale factor.

But I should add that the high DPI mode in Lion works substantially better that the 2X scale factor in Snow Leo. Snow Leo has all sorts of performance and drawing issues. In Lion, it works well. Text looks greats, some widget are pixelated (but probably because they don't have high resolution bitmaps). Here and there, text gets pixelated too (not sure why), and the dock menus don't draw very well. But that's about it.