Widows Online

No, we’re not talking about a new community involvement group for the wives of the deceased. We’re talking about typography, and the total beginner mistake of leaving a word dangling all by itself at the end of a column of text. In desktop layout editors, it’s possible, and completely necessary to control the wrapping of lines so that text is presented in the most elegant way. What about online text?

Unfortunately, the state of browsers today doesn’t give much control. The only consolation is that it’s for a good reason. Because reading on screen can be difficult for many people, and because monitors have different resolutions, the size of text can be dynamically changed in websites. It’s a good thing, -but as you can imagine, it re-wraps text often causing awkward typography. You might say “well Entermotion, just create a line-break and fix it on my monitor.” The problem is that for every situation we fix it in, we’ll break it in another. The web is just a looser environment for typography.

So, for our clients who point out things like this, let us say two things:

  1. We truly love you for being as nerdy about typography as we are. We’re a perfect match for each other.
  2. Unfortunately you’re going to have to live with it for a bit. Just long enough for online technology to catch up to Gutenberg… We know worrying about the orphans and widows of this world can wake you up in a cold sweat. It happens to us too, -but together we can make it through.

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