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Mar 07
2009

Filed Away: Design, Web

How do you see the web?

The Problem

One of the most difficult challenges facing a web designer is screen resolution. Unlike print design, we have no set dimensions, no guarantee how our designs will be seen by the end user. They could be using an 800 x 600 display, or have only have a 16-bit color depth.

And while there are ways to design for some of these more specific scenarios, oftentimes our projects’ budget or timeline simply won’t allow it.

As screen resolution averages are getting bigger and bigger (over 50% with 1280px width or larger), designers will be given more options. However, larger screens don’t always mean maximized browsers. Many users find it more comfortable to keep multiple windows open at once. So until then, our safe bet will still be the 960px - 1000px standard.

How do you see it?

What I find interesting is the vast difference between a designer’s display specifics and the general public’s. For example, while Internet Explorer still has a large 44% market share, barely 7% of this site’s visitors are using IE.

So how do you see the web? Let me know in the comments below. Please format your response thusly:

  1. Operating System
  2. Browser [Version]
  3. Maximum Screen Resolution
  4. Do you maximize your browser to fill the screen?
  5. Your profession

If you’re on Twitter, feel free to leave your @name as well. And don’t forget to follow me.

January 09 Browser Statistics
Browser Statistics Pie Graph
IE6 IE7 IE8 Firefox Chrome Safari Opera
18.5% 25.7% 0.6% 45.5% 3.9% 3.0% 2.3%
January 09 Display Resolution (width) Statistics
Display Resolution Statistics Pie Graph
1440px+ 1280px 1024px 800px Other
27% 30% 26% 6% 11%

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29 comments so far on this post:

  1. David Link |

    I’ll start!

    1. Mac OS X 10.5
    2. Firefox [Version 3.0.7]
    3. 1920 x 1200
    4. Yes, I maximize my browser window.
    5. Web Designer/Developer

    Share this post with your friends, I’d like to get lots of input on this one. Thanks!

  2. Mark |

    I’m using:

    MacOS X
    Firefox
    1280×800 on screen 1
    1680×1050 on screen 2
    I maximize and I’m a designer.

  3. Lewis King |

    Mac OS X 10.5.6
    Safari (version 4) 1280 * 800
    Yes, I maximise my browser window.
    Web Designer, Coder, blogger and podcaster.

  4. Willis |

    1. Windows Vista (groooan)
    2. IE7
    3. 1440 x 900
    4. no
    5. graphic designer

  5. Ethan Killett |

    1. Mac OS X 10.5
    2. Firefox Version 3.0.7
    3. 1680×1050
    4. Yep, maximize browser window.
    5. Graphic Designer/Print/Illustration

  6. Matt Richardson |

    1. Mac OS X 10.5.6
    2. Firefox [Version 3.0.7]
    3. 1440 x 900
    4. No
    5. Web/Graphic Designer

  7. Aaron Irizarry |

    1. Leopard
    2. Firefox 3 / Safari 4
    3. 1440×900
    4. yes
    5. Web Design / Interactive design / User Interface Design

  8. Cristhian Bedon |

    1. Windows XP PRO sp2
    2. Firefox [Version 3.0.7]
    3. 1280 by 1024
    4. Yup
    5. Web&Graphic Designer & small time blogger

  9. Richard Felix |

    1. Mac OS X 10.5.7 Build 9J22
    2. Safari 4
    3. 3840 x 1200
    4. I generally maximize on one monitor.
    5. Web Developer / General Code Monkey / Lead Basketweaver

  10. Josh B |

    1. Mac OS X 10.5
    2. Firefox [Version 3.0.7]
    3. 1920 x 1200
    4. No, I do not always maximize my browser window.
    5. Web Designer/Developer

  11. Chase Swindler |

    1.Mac OS 10.5
    2.Firefox 3
    3.1680 x 1050
    4.Most of the time it’s max, unless I’m coding.
    5.Web Designer/ Web Developer

  12. Jason Evers |

    1. OS X 10.5
    2. Firefox 3 & Nightly WebKit
    3. 1920 x 1200 + 1680 x 1250
    4. 80% of Small Display
    5. Complainer

  13. Brian Hoff |

    one. Mac OS 10.5
    two. Safari 4 / Firefox 3
    three. iMac (1680 x 1050); Macbook (1280 x 800)
    four. Why would I want to take up empty space?
    five. Designer/Blogger

  14. Tim |

    1. Mac OS X 10.5.6
    2. Safari 3 (haven’t even downloaded 4 yet)
    3. 1920 x 1200
    4. Never max
    5. Web / UI / UX

  15. Andrew |

    1. Mac OS 10.5.6
    2. Firefox 3.1b2 & Safari 4 beta
    3. 1440×900 (MBP) + 1600×1200 (external)
    4. Sometimes on external, never on primary
    5. Student/web developer-designer/software developer

  16. Ana Kahn |

    = Mac OS X 10.5
    2 = Safari 4
    3 = Screen 1: 1920 x 1200 | Screen 2: 1680 x 1050
    4 = Yep, I maximize my browser window, definitely!
    5= Web Designer/Developer, Graphic Designer & Illustrator

  17. Logan Leger |

    1. Mac OS X 10.5
    2. Safari 4.0
    3. 1440 x 900
    4. No; I leave a left gutter for Adium (since I’m always chatting).
    5. Student.

    I’m @lleger on Twitter.

  18. Cameron |

    Windows XP Sp3
    Firefox 3.0.7
    1280 x 780
    always maximise (occasionally full screen)
    web designer & developer & occasionally a graphic designer too

  19. Lasha |

    • Mac OSX Leopard
    • Firefox 3.0.7
    • 1920×1200
    • Rarely maximize as I don’t like a single window taking up all my space.
    • Web/Graphic Designer, Blogger, and some stuff. :)

  20. chad engle |

    1. Mac OS 10.5.6
    2. Mozilla Firefox 3.0.7 (testing Safari 4.0 love FF’s plugins waaaay to much though.
    3. 1440×900 (MBP 15″ Roll dual screen but still surf on MBP)
    4. most definately! Srsly?
    5. Graphic Designer

    @chadengle on twitter

  21. Dan |

    1. Mac OS X
    2. Firefox v. 3.0.7
    3. 1440 x 900
    4. Yes, I maximize my browser window.
    5. Web Designer/Developer

  22. Bobby |

    1. Mac OS X Leopard
    2. Firefox 3, Safari 4 beta
    3. Monitor 1- 1920 x 1280
    Monitor 2- 1680×1050
    4. Don’t maximize primary monitor. I like to have lots of apps open.
    5. Web Developer/Graphics (beginner)/Blogger

    Look me up on Twitter: @silencethegroan

  23. rafael |

    1. Win XP
    2. FF 3.0.7
    3. 1024 px
    4. Yes, except when running TweetDeck
    5. Freelance designer

  24. Alex |

    • Mac OSX Leopard
    • Firefox 3.0.7
    • 1920×1200
    • yes
    • Web/Graphic Designer, Blogger, and some stuff. :)

  25. Kali7 |

    1a. Windows
    1b. Linx
    2. Firefox latest
    3a. largest 1680 x 1050, smallest 1224 x 768
    3b. largest 1680 x 1050, smallest 800 x 600
    4. Yes
    5. Graphic / Web Designer & Developer
    @Kali7

  26. Dat |

    ● Mac OS X 1.5.5
    ● Safari 3.1.2
    ● 1920×1200
    ● No
    ● Graphic Designer

  27. Sassy |

    1a. Windows Vista
    1b. Windows XP
    2. Firefox 3
    3a. 1680 x 1050
    3b. 1280 x 1024
    4. Yes, always. (Hooray for tabbed browsing and Taskbar.)
    5. Musician, blogger, web designer.
    @SassyBlonde

  28. wendy wetherbee |

    Mac OS X 10.4.11
    Safari 4, Firefox 3
    1920 x 1200 on screen 1, 1680 x 1050 on screen 2
    Nope, rarely maximize, always doing too many other things.
    Graphic Designer / Web Designer & Developer / Photographer
    @creativeandweb

  29. Nick |

    Windows Vista SP1
    Firefox [Version 3.0.5]
    1440 x 900
    Yes, I maximize my browser window.
    Web Developer with a smidgin of design work (occasionally)

    Twitter: nickohrn

A penny for your thoughts?