Changes to our IM formatting

Mark Doliner mark at
Tue Aug 4 13:04:11 EDT 2009

On Tue, Aug 4, 2009 at 4:56 AM, Luke Schierer<lschiere at> wrote:
> On Aug 4, 2009, at 04:40 EDT, Mark Doliner wrote:
>> I've kind of noticed that IM protocols tend to use "pt" sizes when
>> specifying the font size.  E.g. 10pt or 14pt.  But AIM and maybe a few
>> places in libpurple and Pidgin have historically used HTML font sizes
>> (the ones on the crappy 1 to 7 scale).  I think this sometimes leads
>> to a scenario where, if you send a message to yourself for example, we
>> convert the font size from the 1-7 scale to the pt scale then back to
>> the 1-7 scale, which has the potential to lose precision.
>> But also it's just kind of silly.  It doesn't seem like the 1-7 scale
>> is really used anywhere else, and the font tag is deprecated in newer
>> versions of HTML.  I suspect that AIM is capable of dealing with pt
>> sizes now, too.
> I could be wrong here, but I think we *did* send point sizes at one time,
> and I think people complained because windows tends to use a very different
> default font size than your average linux computer, and it tended to lead to
> us sending ridiculously big/small text to the winaim user compared to what
> they normally saw.  Still, its certainly worth testing my recollection.

Hmm, I don't remember that.  It seems like that reasoning might be
flawed, though.  Converting from one system to the other doesn't make
the font size behave differently for Windows vs. Linux.  If an HTML
font size 4 appears bigger in Windows AIM than it does in Linux Pidgin
then a 14pt font will also appear bigger in Windows AIM than it does
in Linux.


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