Google

The losing battle of combating crappy web development

I used to use Flash player 11.5 so I could watch up to 60 fps on Youtube, but then they changed several things. First, they prevented that feasible method from working. Then they enforced HTML5 (a player with various usability downsides that I also didn’t use because back then 60 fps worked with Flash 11.5) so that I had to cripple my browser to default to Flash. (That also disabled Vine playback.)

And now, since recently, the Flash player’s bottom bar that shows video length and such is not there unless the video plays. I use an addon for disabling autoplay of videos (since Youtube and such steadfastly refuse to allow it), so maybe that’s a factor, but maybe not. I thought it’s because of my ancient Flash player version, but I should have known better. Even with the newest I don’t have it, so if I want to check lengths of videos I have tabbed (which I do a lot), I gotta play-and-page-reload it.

One would think that with all these obstacles, they’re done because HTML5 now plays 60 fps on Firefox, but at least when they set default to HTML5 it didn’t. I could reconfigure some stuff and check whether it does now, but why go through the effort if I know in advance that it very likely still doesn’t? I’m tired of this!

Youtube prevented the one means for watching 60 fps for my browser, so that kinda speaks for itself.

Same with IE by the way. That one I left to default, without modifications or stuff, and it uses Flash and thus can’t play 60 fps.

You know why all this shit is happening this way, right? Do I have to spell it out?

Google Chrome.

When that browser entered the scene, I knew exactly how it would go. That the power-hungry Google corporation would use it in order to conquer ‘market share’ and thus gain control and then focus on their browser so that others would be at a disadvantage. That’s pretty much what Microsoft tried in the past with the IE, too.

And now the (gradually less) intelligently designed Opera browser is basically Chrome, too, and even Steam has been based on Chrome.

Chrome is the corporate browser. Firefox might go through some bullshit dev ideologies, too, but THAT should be the free, independent standard used by most.

Back when I used Opera (up to version 12), I was the rare-case odd power user. When I finally saw no choice but to change to Firefox (actually Waterfox), that one had already become a minor figure.

If developments of this kind continue, we might eventually be using crappy ports of mobile operating systems on PCs, and “PC” then means gaming-console derivative multimedia computer. Also, private Linux users will be classified as potential domestic terrorists by the CIA, since they won’t be able/willing to imagine that anyone would use it unless they’re a hacker, while, in typical double standard, for business purposes it is considered a smart way to reduce expenses.

Yeah, you’ll have noticed, I’m really fed up with this shit.

People should have woken up years ago when Google dropped their motto/guideline “Do no evil.”. I mean, how much clearer do you need it?

My thesis is that people tolerate so much corporate bullshit because they are afraid of having their own personal bullshit be stripped away.

Google web fonts: Another example of corporations making everything worse

Many web fonts don’t use hinting, thus look awful without ClearType or at least regular font smoothing.
An eventual fix of this in browsers was to activate font smoothing in the browser for all web fonts. This is a relatively good solution that came way too late, and the fact that Google’s own Chrome browser had this problem for a long time is facepalm-material, but nothing unexpected from a corporation too successful for everybody’s good.

For some reason, this problem occured only recently to me. I don’t know whether more and more websites are using web fonts as of late or whether something in the available range of fonts was changed, but ever since a few weeks ago when Google’s own sites started looking horrible (font name “Roboto”, which led me to talk about a web ro(t)botomy), more and more other websites showed the same problem. I also recently installed the joke font “Sans Bullshit Sans” in my system and now various websites are defaulting to that font. What the hell are web designers doing?!

I hate this for-mobile trend (because it very much has the smell of it) as much as the for-console trend in gaming. Is anybody surprised about the PC master race thing becoming popular if anything non-PC is getting worse and worse?

BTW probably the first occurence of ugly web fonts was when Valve changed the menu title font to an ugly one.

What are my options now? I intentionally don’t use font smoothing in Windows because I don’t like my computer UI to look like printed pages of text, and even less so ClearType because it looks awful with its chromatic aberration.
Update to a newer (than 30) Firefox version? No way in hell am I doing that just in hope that the issue has been fixed now while risking to render half of my (sadly very necessary) browser addons non-functional.

I tried a browser addon “Anti-Aliasing Tuner”, but it only alters rendering and alters anti-aliasing but doesn’t set when to use it and when not. If I activate smoothing with it, everything in Firefox will be smoothed; the whole UI.

It is really sad, because this whole thing isn’t necessary. Either browser developers should have reacted a long time ago or there shouldn’t be fonts that don’t utilize hinting for things like popular web application. It’s just the typical focusing on default settings for people who swallow everything as it comes, not someone who might disable font smoothing because it makes text unnecessarily ‘fuzzy’.
In my opinion there never should have been fonts used this way that absolutely rely on smoothing to look alright.

Also, if you install a web font in your system and use it in a word processor, you get the same horrible results. The print is good, but the display is horrible. I don’t know whether the for-print process applies smoothing automatically; not an expert in that. But fonts should simply be displayed properly without absolutely requiring post-processing. On principle, but practically speaking definitely not before devices are compatible (i.e. browsers applying good smoothing on web fonts).

For reference, this article has a comparison picture to show you how ugly some popular web fonts are natively:
http://www.dev-metal.com/fix-ugly-font-rendering-google-chrome/
Actually, it’s a mild case. Google’s Roboto looks much worse still. This posting has another example linked: http://ask.metafilter.com/249265/Google-Web-Fonts-are-rendering-horribly-on-my-Firefox-Chrome-browsers
What you might notice there is that a hinting-less font with smoothing still looks worse than an unsmoothed font that uses hinting, because the IE version shown in the picture still has those deviations of line thickness and such. It’s the original ugliness of the font merely paved over a little.