[Python-Dev] Playing with a new theme for the docs

Glenn Linderman v+python at g.nevcal.com
Thu Mar 22 20:50:09 CET 2012

On 3/22/2012 10:02 AM, Steven D'Aprano wrote:
> As they say, the 99% who are lousy designers give the rest a bad name.
> *wink*


> My first impression of this page:
> http://www.python.org/~gbrandl/build/html/index.html
> was that the grey side-bar gives the page a somber, perhaps even 
> dreary, look. First impressions count, and I'm afraid that first look 
> didn't work for me. 

The dark sidebar continued down the whole page, and made it clearer why 
that space was being wasted at the bottom of long pages...  I had never 
noticed, until doing the side-by-side comparison, that it was possible 
to collapse the TOC sidebar, but this seems to be true only in the old 

After looking at both a while, my suggestions would be:

1.  Preserve the collapsability of the TOC, but possible enhance its 
recognizability with an X in the upper right of the TOC sidebar, as well 
as the << in the middle.

2. Make the header fixed, so that the bread crumb trail at the top is 
available even after scrolling way down a long page.

3. Make the sidebar separately scrollable, so that it stays visible when 
scrolling down in the text.  This would make it much easier to jump from 
section to section, if the TOC didn't get lost in the process.

I have no particular preferences for colors or background colors, as 
long as they are reasonably legible.  I do have a preference for serif 
fonts, especially if the font gets small.  Can anyone point me to any 
legibility studies that show any font being more legible, more easily 
readable, than Times Roman?  (And yes, I know a lot of people that 
dislike Times Roman, and none of them ever have.)
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