Chris Lawrence has redesigned his stylesheet. He’s also complaining about my font sizes again. What’s strange is that, on almost every monitor I’ve used, my site looks fine at the default setting (and even on “smaller”). But every once in a while, the colors are way off as it the font. All in IE 6. Rather odd. At any rate, for those of you with this problem, OTB is easily scalable: In IE, just View -Text Size -Larger.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. joy says:

    *ahem* Chris does not use Internet Explorer nor does he use IE 6. I think he uses Firebird as his browser and I know he uses Linux as his OS.

    If I wanted to be pedantic about it, the problem really is your stylesheet –the default font is too small. For example using Firebird on Windows, your font appears to be an 8pt or so.

    In other words, just because it looks good in IE, doesn’t mean anything to the rest of us who use other browsers and OSes.

  2. James Joyner says:

    I’ve screwed around with the fonts some. The problem is that 82.5% of my visitors are using Windows (and almost all of those XP, 2000, or 98) and 75% are using IE with no real pattern for the remainder of the users.

    Going up to the next font increment makes the posts absolutely gigantic in IE. I’m not sure how to solve the problem without going to a non-scalable font.

  3. FWIW, I use Firebird at home (on Windows and Linux) and Safari (Mac OS X) at work (although I also use Firebird sometimes, since 90% of my work is done via X11 on two Linux boxes that are within 10 feet of my desk). And your site is damn tiny in all of them. (I just figure it’s a good vision test. It doesn’t help that the monitor I have at work was manufactured in 1991 and is the size of a light truck.)

    About the only time I ever fire up IE is to go to, something I do religiously every time I boot a Windows machine…

    BTW, I was just told that the colors on my site suck, so expect more changes. 🙂

  4. James Joyner says:

    5.5% are using Mozilla. Nothing else gets even 3%.

  5. James Joyner says:

    Chris: The colors are a little dull, but nothing objectionable. Lots and lots of white!

  6. Bear in mind that at least Opera spoofs being IE by default. And Safari often shows up as Mozilla (because they stuck the word “Gecko” in the ID string).

    As for wanting more colors… well, I guess you could switch to another stylesheet. The older ones had all sorts of shaded boxes and junk all over the place. There’s more than just the default (currently “dd2-red” in my rather idiotic naming scheme). But generally, my bias is very Tufte-ish: not a lot of lines or boxes.

  7. James Joyner says:

    Didn’t know that about the spoofing. Clearly, the blogosphere is much geekier than the mainstream. I know that virtually all normal people are using a real browser IE, as the Good Lord (or, at least Bill Gates) intended.

  8. Kathy K says:

    You can set a minimum font-size in Firebird. Just go to fonts/colors and set your minimum to 10 or 12 or something. That will override any site whose font gets too small. (BTW, I’m typing this in Firebird.)

  9. joy says:

    Not to engage you in some sort of geek war, but IE is actually broken and not following Web standards.

    It’s Opera and Mozilla/Firebird, which are technically correct.


    btw, I’m probably the only one using Opera on your site though

  10. Anonymous says:


    I’m sure you’re right. The thing is, IE has become sort of the default because it’s so ubiquitous.

  11. Kathy K says:

    I normally use Opera.