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Is it just me, then, that hates the "narrow strip of text down the middle of my large monitor" school of web design?

I don't understand why I'm being forced to scroll when there's all this blank space to the sides.

Even on my laptop, this looks strange to me, a huge wide expanse of nothing, and this little strip of text down the middle of the page.

What's the reasoning behind this?

Lines should be between 50 and 70 characters for optimal readability. Longer lines take longer to read because you increase the time you spend seeking the beginning of the next line. You can increase line height to compensate, but the seek time improvement is small and the information density decrease is large, and it looks pretty terrible. Columns would be a great solution, but HTML/CSS’s tooling for it has a lot of integration and polish issues, so doing it in a way that’s actually better than the strip is a lot of work.

Arguably, though, a website that’s surrendered to the strip should make some compromise between line length readability and reducing scrolling.

It's to help readability for larger blocks of text, so it's easier to find the next line when the text wraps

> What's the reasoning behind this?

Lack of multi-column text support on the Web. Optimal readability is around 64 characters per line - more than that hurts quite a bit, especially for long-form text where accurate scanning is more important.


Even IE10, mobile safari, and the gingerbread android browser support it

Support is still bad. There's no easy way to fill columns left to right that works well on both short articles and very long ones.

This would make so much more sense to me than the thin strip of text :)

Constrained line lengths increase readability:


A reason is that scanning horizontally with your eyes while reading a long text increases the chance you'll lose your place.

What became of text columns https://caniuse.com/#feat=multicolumn to enhance readability and still use all that space? Is anybody using them?

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