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Agreed – this is very cool. Probably using so much CPU because it actually updates a paragraph tag in the DOM with all of those characters. I bet a canvas tag with text fills would solve the speed problem. But then, the page would not be SEO friendly ;)

Canvas actually gave me disappointing results, believe it or not. The text rendering wasn't as fast or as pleasantly rendered compared to just using the DOM. It didn't seem worth it to me to try and optimize a canvas rendering routine, although I could have been overly naive with my initial tests.

Did you tried creating a imageData for every single character in the "ASCII gradient" and then using putImageData( imageData, x, y )?

First of all, I am a big fan of your work Mr. Doob.

Secondly, no! That's a good idea, I'll have to try it out.

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