Typing Font for use in a Biography

+1 vote
The Typing Font used in a Biography appears to be fixed  i.e. Helvetica 13 . Is this normal or standard and used by every Wicki Tree entry  ? Can it be changed ? If it can be changed how do I do this?  Any help very much appreciated .  Thanks from Bruce

in WikiTree Help by Bruce Donaldson G2G4 (4.8k points)
recategorized by Jillaine Smith
Bruce, I'm no authority on this, but I'm not aware of any way to change the font in the text of a profile.  Honestly, I think if we had that capability the site would just appear to be a disorganized hodgepodge as you move from page to page.  Members sometimes experiment with different fonts in G2G, and IMHO it's an eyesore.  Others may disagree.
Well, Dennis, since you think it's an eyesore, I have to speak up.  When I paste text into a profile, WikiTree standardizes the font, but G2G does not.  So my guess is that the different fonts seen in G2G are more a result of pasting in information than deliberate experimentation.  That is certainly true in my own case.
Sometimes people have written their queries using an ornate script font. I find these quite difficult to read, perhaps a consequence of my age, and typically ignore these queries.
Thanks Everyone for your help . Many solutions  to explore. Thanks etc Bruce .  DONALDSON-1027

3 Answers

+11 votes

The font-family order of preference is "Open Sans", Helvetica, Arial, and then sans-serif. The font used in your browser is ultimately dependent on the fonts you have installed on your computer.

Formatting other than what is explained on Editing Tips is generally not recommended. It can cause confusion and creates a barrier for editing for other users who may not be familiar with such techniques. For some explanation as to why, read here: Help:HTML and Inline CSS.

by Tim Varney G2G4 (4.1k points)
Thanks  Much appreciated .

From Bruce  DONALDSON - 1027
Tim, hiya. Out of curiosity, when you view the page source for profiles are you seeing a CSS call to "'Open Sans', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif"? I see only the Google Fonts API call to Open Sans (in 400 and 700 weights); no other font or font family specification anywhere. Which would lead me to think that anyone seeing the pages in anything other than Open Sans is using a dated browser that can't display webfonts in place of locally-installed fonts...that it knows Open Sans was called, but that it can't use it so is defaulting to browser settings for local fonts.

And now that I look at that rendered source, it also surprises me that font sizes are being set solely in EMs, never in viewport units. The code I see even when scaled down to sub-30rem still forces a 1em baseline font size, so the default starting size in pixels/points is coming from the local browser, not the website. Not a huge issue, of course, but not using viewport units is kinda...2014ish. Not a truly responsive display for various device sizes.

Wait. Sorry. Lemme climb out of this rabbit hole... Anybody got a ladder?
Edison, please explain what you're talking about.  How does one "view the page source for profiles," as a start?  (I'm using Safari for Mac.)

Nerdish stuff; sorry. In Safari it isn't as straightforward as it is in, say, Chrome. You first have to go to Preferences > Advanced, and then select "Show Develop menu in menu bar" (at least something like that; I don't use Safari).

After closing the Preferences window, there should be a new menu option for "Develop." Under that should be an option to "Show Page Source." What you'll see isn't the actual code. Most websites nowadays, like WikiTree, run application front-ends that call various databases where the actual content is stored. So there is no "page," per se...like there was a decade ago. Each time you visit a profile, the page that you see is dynamically rendered, on-the-fly, by the combination of source-code engine, linked style sheets, and the content in the databases.

In some other web browsers viewing that rendered code is as simple as a right-click anywhere on a webpage, and then choosing "View page source." In Chrome, more often than not I use an even nerdier option, the deceptively simple-sounding "Inspect." That splits the display window and opens up a pretty comprehensive set of tools to see details of what's going on under the hood. Speaking of, most of us probably don't realize it, but even when we're logged in, every profile page we visit at WikiTree is setting third-party cookies with the advertising company DoubleClick.net. Completely innocuous, but every profile visit is setting a couple of cookies.

I, er... Uh, I still need a ladder to get out of this rabbit hole... I'll stop talking nerdish if I climb out of this hole...

Thank you, Edison.
Edison -  It should be calling the webfont.  The fall-backs are for older browsers.

I'm using Chrome.  It's pretty easy to see it there.  Open the DevTools by pressing F12.  Select the "Elements" tab.  Press ctrl-shift-C to select an element to inspect the css of.  You can then see the current style properties of the rendered element.

There is a similar way to do it in Safari, but I don't remember it off the top of my head.
+5 votes

Hi Bruce, Standardized font size has been discussed a lot. Not everyone is happy with the standardized sizing, but blockquotes, italics, line breaks, and headings can be applied to make a profile more readable and attractive while keeping appearances consistent for readers, especially on longer bio's. Editing Tips might help, if you haven't seen this. 

Also, I have seen the use of wiki markup on some personal pages, used sparingly for isolated sections such as <font size="1">this format</font> but it is not to be used on other profiles for the sake of consistency, (excepting personal pages as mentioned... )


by K C G2G6 (9.2k points)
edited by K C
+6 votes
by Natalie Trott G2G6 Pilot (699k points)
Thanks . Great Help . Much appreciated.  Bruce  DONALDSON-1027

Related questions

+3 votes
1 answer
49 views asked Mar 17, 2017 in WikiTree Tech by Mary Rudd G2G6 (6.1k points)
+5 votes
1 answer
89 views asked Jan 22, 2015 in WikiTree Tech by John Novak G2G6 (7.9k points)
+2 votes
2 answers
82 views asked Dec 9, 2019 in WikiTree Help by Magne Rugnes G2G Rookie (220 points)
+3 votes
0 answers
69 views asked Jan 24, 2019 in WikiTree Help by Valerie Crowley G2G6 Mach 1 (14.3k points)
+7 votes
4 answers
85 views asked Aug 13, 2019 in The Tree House by David Hughey G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
+4 votes
2 answers
+8 votes
6 answers

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright