Resolution Independence in Snow Leopard?

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
Hi, I remember reading well before Leopard was released that there was a major feature called resolution independence which was supposed to be included.



I was quite disappointed when I found out that it never happened. Although I've heard that OS X Leopard is Resolution Independent, only developer's can use it and not the average user.



On high resolution monitors, text and programs become be too tiny to see clearly unless you're quite close to the screen. This may not be a problem for people with perfect vision but not everyone is as fortunate.



Resolution independence was supposed to fix this by scaling the entire operating system. Windows Vista includes a scaling system, although it's not perfect, atleast most of the OS scales nicely.



Will we finally see Resolution Independence in Snow Leopard?

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    Nice to know I'm not alone in this eyesight situation. At the present time, Windows 7 Beta has a quick fix to increase the overall text size to either 125 or 150 percent. For me, the 125 is perfect. While it mostly works okay, there is room for improvement. While the 125% is automatically recognized and implemented with IE 8, not so with Firefox. The ONLY reason I have a Mac is for the low vision aids!!! The only things I would miss in Mac OS X, if I were convinced to go back to the Dark Side, would be Alex and Garage Band. I am not an Apple fan or a Mac fan. I MUST have tools to accommodate my visual deficiencies. If Windows 7 can do a better job, then it is bye-bye Mac. I refuse to have two computers and/or Boot Camp/Virtual Box. It will be one or the other. I would like to see (hear) a new voice in Snow Leopard. Let the resolution solution games begin.
  • Reply 2 of 14
    akacakac Posts: 510member
    Anybody can use RI today on Leopard. It works and it works fairly well if you're using a system with no third-party apps. But that's the issue - while the main UI elements work fine with third party apps, a lot of the OS X experience is a finely crafted piece of art and as such require developers to work on it.



    So the difference is that Windows has it, and it works OK, but not great (I used it for a year before I got tired of all the issues), and OS X has it and it works OK, but not great. However Microsoft doesn't care that it doesn't work great while Apple does.
  • Reply 3 of 14
    slr2009slr2009 Posts: 14member
    I agree with you but I'm not too concerned about the issues with third party applications. Once apple pushes for resolution independence, developers will slowly catch on and eventually most third party applications will be resolution independent as well.



    But Apple must take the first step otherwise nothing will ever get done. And even if there are some some issues with third party applications at large sizes, I can live with that. As long as the whole OS is resolution independence I can live with a few third party applications that don't scale perfectly.



    In my opinion, another problem is that most consumer's are uninformed about Native Resolution, DPI and Resolution independence or even understand what the concept mean, Developers haven't done anything simply because there's no demand for it.



    On Windows Vista I usually keep the dpi set to 120 DPI which is a perfect size for me, On Leopard, I can't do that. Browsing the internet is fine since I can increase the text to any level I want but just about any other program outside of the browser becomes an issue for me.



    I like Leopard much more then Windows Vista, I got my parent's to switch over to a Mac, they got an iMac which they love. Apple is going to be heading into rough territory soon, Windows 7 will be competing with Snow Leopard.



    People aren't looking for just a performance increase, I mean it's nice and all but it might not be enough to win over Microsoft. Right now they are on a roll but can they keep up?
  • Reply 4 of 14
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SLR2009 View Post


    In my opinion, another problem is that most consumer's are uninformed about Native Resolution, DPI and Resolution independence or even understand what the concept mean, Developers haven't done anything simply because there's no demand for it.



    I think you hit the nail on the head, but not the way you think. You're right, consumers don't know about DPI, PPI, resolutions native and scaled, etc... and there's really no reason why they *should*. "Larger" and "smaller" are the only things they should have to know about. Until the point comes that that can be achieved without bizarre things like only some UI elements scaling appropriately, *any* and *all* such glitches will be seen only as "it's busted", where "it" will be "the Mac", regardless of whether it is an OS element, an Apple app, or a third party app. Consumers really have little reason to know about the inner workings, and where developers will simply disregard or ignore a glitch because they know why it's happening, a consumer will only know "it's busted". And that, to Cupertino, is unacceptable.*



    *In theory. In reality, they have scads of little glitches.
  • Reply 5 of 14
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    I will never understand why there isn't a way to fix it so LCD or LED screens cannot modify their resolution without going all blurry. We should never have switched from CRT until it was possible to equal the flexibility of the CRT screen. I am using a 20 inch iMac and it is my first departure from the CRT screen. It stinks, big time. I wish Apple would bring back the eMac with all the guts inside being current. Sure, I could snag an old one, but I'd like to have a 19 inch CRT screen. If Apple did that, it could make a killer computer/TV set for the college crowd. I still have a CRT television and will hate the day when it dies. The LCD screens are nowhere near as clear for me, and statements have been made to claim they loose performance in the standard TV Def mode. In my opinion, the whole LCD/LED format is "busted."
  • Reply 6 of 14
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,268member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by WPLJ42 View Post


    I will never understand why there isn't a way to fix it so LCD or LED screens cannot modify their resolution without going all blurry. We should never have switched from CRT until it was possible to equal the flexibility of the CRT screen. I am using a 20 inch iMac and it is my first departure from the CRT screen. It stinks, big time. I wish Apple would bring back the eMac with all the guts inside being current. Sure, I could snag an old one, but I'd like to have a 19 inch CRT screen. If Apple did that, it could make a killer computer/TV set for the college crowd. I still have a CRT television and will hate the day when it dies. The LCD screens are nowhere near as clear for me, and statements have been made to claim they loose performance in the standard TV Def mode. In my opinion, the whole LCD/LED format is "busted."



    I cannot agree.



    Granted the contrast ratios have taken years to catch up to CRT we are now getting LCD screens that deliver eye popping color and contrast. CRT have always been a bit flaky when it comes to calibration and that shouldn't be much of a problem with the newer high quality stuff with LED backlighting.



    I'm not very comfy with where LCD is going. I was more of a Plasma for the high end but LCD with LED backlighting has now obviated a need for Plasma which is why Pioneer and Panasonic are jettisoning plans to improve the tech.



    We just don't have enough high density monitors yet to really push RI. I guess it'll come soon enough driven by the deman to monitor 4k video and more surprisingly it'll come because DisplayPort will deliver the bandwidth needed for these high resolutions.
  • Reply 7 of 14
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post


    I cannot agree.



    Granted the contrast ratios have taken years to catch up to CRT we are now getting LCD screens that deliver eye popping color and contrast. CRT have always been a bit flaky when it comes to calibration and that shouldn't be much of a problem with the newer high quality stuff with LED backlighting.



    I'm not very comfy with where LCD is going. I was more of a Plasma for the high end but LCD with LED backlighting has now obviated a need for Plasma which is why Pioneer and Panasonic are jettisoning plans to improve the tech.



    We just don't have enough high density monitors yet to really push RI. I guess it'll come soon enough driven by the deman to monitor 4k video and more surprisingly it'll come because DisplayPort will deliver the bandwidth needed for these high resolutions.



    You may have missed my point. I am visually impaired. I need text on the screen to be larger than anything available in the LCD or LED monitors. Back in the good old days, I had a piece of junk PC from the old Compaq, but loved the 14 inch CRT monitor running at 640 x 480. With a 15 inch, 640 x 480 is too big and 800 x 600 is too small. My eyesight is modestly but constantly blurred, with or without my glasses. While I may have visual problems above the norm, many of us over 50, need options beyond the native resolution of any monitor of today at any size screen. It is wrong that I cannot effectively change my iMac screen from the native 1680 x 1050 to something I can comfortably see. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that what this thread is about?
  • Reply 8 of 14
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by WPLJ42 View Post


    ... Back in the good old days, I had a piece of junk PC from the old Compaq, but loved the 14 inch CRT monitor running at 640 x 480. With a 15 inch, 640 x 480 is too big and 800 x 600 is too small. ... While I may have visual problems above the norm, many of us over 50, need options beyond the native resolution of any monitor of today at any size screen. It is wrong that I cannot effectively change my iMac screen from the native 1680 x 1050 to something I can comfortably see. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that what this thread is about?



    It sounds like you are either unaware of the Universal Access preference pane or that you have been assiduously avoiding the accommodations for the visually impaired provided by it.
  • Reply 9 of 14
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post


    It sounds like you are either unaware of the Universal Access preference pane or that you have been assiduously avoiding the accommodations for the visually impaired provided by it.



    There is more than one type of visually impaired. Mine is a processing problem. I have 20/20 vision, I just can't use it. I am more than familiar with the functions of Universal Access. The zoom feature makes everything blurry, which is already an issue. Most all zoom programs, Windows too, make things blurry. The only thing I use in Universal Access is the ability to make the ultra-tiny Mac OS X mouse pointer something I can actually use. And guess what, it is blurry. Feature for feature, except for speech, Windows is easier and better for my eyesight situation. I tried the Mac once before, iMac G3 350, and had to eventually return to Windows. I started my old iMac out with the default 800 x 600 res and had to change it to 640 x 480. I will wait and see what happens with Snow Leopard. Right now, Windows 7 looks better on my iMac than Leopard. Narrator is a joke. Alex rules!!! I have used screen readers and magnification software on the Windows side in the past. By far, VoiceOver is the easiest to understand. I'm not blind, just low vision and VoiceOver is more than what I need. Getting Alex to read things to me is a blessing. Alex IS the reason I have an iMac!!!
  • Reply 10 of 14
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by WPLJ42 View Post


    .... Mine is a processing problem. I have 20/20 vision, I just can't use it. I am more than familiar with the functions of Universal Access. The zoom feature makes everything blurry, which is already an issue. Most all zoom programs, Windows too, make things blurry. ...



    I am sympathetic to your situation. The MacOS X display is not blurry either via Universal Access or when when displayed normally. Your only hope might be to join a group of people who suffer from your disorder. Your group may be able to motivate an adaptive optics scientist or research group to develop glasses or a viewer that can compensate for the distortion in your vision. Adaptive optics have dramatically improved astronomical imagining. Perhaps it can help you and those like you.
  • Reply 11 of 14
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post


    I am sympathetic to your situation. The MacOS X display is not blurry either via Universal Access or when when displayed normally. Your only hope might be to join a group of people who suffer from your disorder. Your group may be able to motivate an adaptive optics scientist or research group to develop glasses or a viewer that can compensate for the distortion in your vision. Adaptive optics have dramatically improved astronomical imagining. Perhaps it can help you and those like you.



    I have worked with the Dept. of Rehab. The only help they could give with was with our local Center for the Blind. I worked with a "regular - sightling" and he too claimed magnification left text gently out of focus. I have my mouse set up to zoom with the scroll wheel when I press the cmd key. I can go a click or two and it will go fuzzy then come back into focus. I'm talking about big zoom. It becomes just as out of focus as it would if I changed resolution on the screen. I hate to say Windows works better for me, but it does. My best bet is to return to Windows and get a CRT monitor. I have been to UC Berkeley and the best of the best claim I am stuck with it, since I am WAY over 8 years old. For the rest of the people out there, Apple, Microsoft and monitor makers need to do better. My situation is not that much different than what can happen with Macular Degeneration. EDIT: If I zoom just a little bit with my mouse, the zoom actually returns back to normal.
  • Reply 12 of 14
    I know I'm late to the party on this thread, but I hesitate to start a new one.



    I'm on a different side of the res-independence concern. I agree and sympathize with those who want a more accessible visual interface, but frankly the bulk of my concern is that I want them to stop messing with the resolution settings.



    I honestly never understood messing with the resolution of a display. Your display is capable of displaying crispy clear information at nearly 30,000 bytes per square inch. It's capable of displaying beautifully exquisite detail, far beyond what any TV can provide (a "full HD" 50" plasma displays barely 40 linear pixels per inch.). So I really don't grasp why people would want to "waste" all that quality by turning down the display resolution.



    Of course, on an LCD, the problem is much worse, because the pixels are fixed in place and size, so any attempt to run a non-native resolution results in imperfect dithering, where three pixels do their best to represent two, etc, in practice often forcing 10,000 pixels into imitating 4900 in a basically chaotic situation.



    In short, the problem a person will approach is, "Everything on the screen looks small." Their solution, the only solution they can find, is "Turn down the resolution." But in fact, the actual solution would be to make the "stuff" on the screen appear larger. Of course this means, making the menu bar go from 25 pixels to 40 or 500 pixels, and making the on-screen fonts change from a range of "8 to 20" points, to a range of "14 to 40" or some such.



    The solution for the person who complains that the screen looks small should look plain and simple, like a knob or a slider or a button that just says, plain english, "Size of stuff on screen." When that control is increased- yes, by percentage, to 125 or 150 or 200 or 136- then the OS should interpret the software's request for a "8 point font" as a request for that size, times the multiplier. It would do the same thing with any interface-relevant component, whether an icon, a mouseover label, a smiley.. anything that has to be clicked or read should scale up automatically.



    Obviously the implementation of such a scheme would require some back-end engineering. But honestly, I'd settle for an OS-level dithering substitute to vectorize components that can be vectorized when for one reason or another a user feels that his 1600x900 display should run at 800x600. I like the Windows 7 scheme of 125% or 150%. Frankly I don't like it enough to be willing to switch to Windows. For now, I will have to settle for implementing parental controls to lock the resolutions permanently and keep people in my house from messing with my screen.



    To a guy like me, with decent vision,
  • Reply 13 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SLR2009 View Post


    Hi, I remember reading well before Leopard was released that there was a major feature called resolution independence which was supposed to be included.



    I was quite disappointed when I found out that it never happened. Although I've heard that OS X Leopard is Resolution Independent, only developer's can use it and not the average user.



    On high resolution monitors, text and programs become be too tiny to see clearly unless you're quite close to the screen. This may not be a problem for people with perfect vision but not everyone is as fortunate.



    Resolution independence was supposed to fix this by scaling the entire operating system. Windows Vista includes a scaling system, although it's not perfect, atleast most of the OS scales nicely.



    Will we finally see Resolution Independence in Snow Leopard?



    From what I understand Cocoa is all ready to go but the big problem is that there are many Carbon based applications out there which will look weird when they move over to resolution independence. I'd say it will be at least 10.8 before we start seeing resolution independence has been switched on with Carbon maybe removed entirely.
  • Reply 14 of 14
    mcarlingmcarling Posts: 1,106member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macintoshtoffy View Post


    From what I understand Cocoa is all ready to go but the big problem is that there are many Carbon based applications out there which will look weird when they move over to resolution independence. I'd say it will be at least 10.8 before we start seeing resolution independence has been switched on with Carbon maybe removed entirely.



    I wish Apple would remove Carbon run-time support from 10.7, but I don't expect such progress until 10.8. Anyone really needing to run a Carbon app can stay with 10.6.



    Resolution Independence is #1 on my MacOS wish list.
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