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Ken Young rtm at
Tue Jun 10 07:33:17 CEST 2008

Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) wrote:

> this is a core part of my point. i stare at this screen every day.
> i know its dpi. most people imho will never make use of such a dpi
> as they literally can't see it - they will NEED to use much bigger
> fonts just to see something other than a blur. thus the resolution
> usefulness degrades rapidly. the "but i can't do 80x24 without vga"
> is moot as it is a blur, unless you go up to a font size
> where all you can fit is 60 wide or less.

I stare at my neo1973, which has the same screen, every day.   I also
use a Treo 700p daily.   The treo has a 320 x 320 pixel screen, which
is larger than QVGA.   If I run the terminal application which comes
with the neo's gtk software stack, switch to landscape orientation, go
to full screen and reduce the font size by two zoom levels, I have
a terminal application which will show 85 columns with 25 lines, and
a perfectly legible font.   The difference between the neo's display
and my Treo's display (which can display 80 columns with a 4 pixel wide
font) IS DRAMATIC.   This is not a case of the VGA screen looking
"a little better".   This is not me kidding myself about the quality
of my eyesight.   There is a dramatic difference between VGA and QVGA.
I wish I knew how to take a screenshot off of my Treo.   I'd set up a
wiki page with the images, and then there would be no more discussion
of this, I think.   Anyone with decent eyesight would see the difference.
If someone can email me with instructions about how to do a screen
grab with PalmOS, I'll make a comparison page.

> maybe it just needs people to actually use it for a while and
> they might begin to see that a lower res screen may just be fine and
> not as bad as they think.  the things you want to do are possible at
> lower resolutions.

I'd venture to guess that most of the people on this list who have
posted an opinion about this have used cell phones with lower resolution
screens.   I have - I use one every day.   Do you really think the
consumers who are afflicted with featuritis, who care only about bragging
to their friends about how slick there phones are, are hanging around
waiting for the Freerunner?   Take a look at the iphone which was anounced
yesterday.   Its hardware is superior, in every aspect (except the screen,
but you appear to be working on fixing that) to the Freerunner's.
It costs $199 (I know Apple extracts money later via the service
contract).   Anyone with even the mildest case of featuritis is going to
buy something like *that*.   The people who are going to buy the Freerunner
are persons who want to see cell phones take a different path.    And,
though this sounds pretentious, I think the people who are reading the OM
discussion lists, waiting impatiently to buy a Freerunner, know a lot more
about cell phones than the average consumer.    If these people are
telling you they want VGA, not QVGA, I don't think you should just assume
they have no idea what they really want.

> browsing full web pages scrammed into a 2.8" screen as many have
> suggested, is really... pushing such a tiny screen far beyond its
> usefulness. web pages are "designed" for 14" or 17" screens or so.
> squeezing them down into 2.8" is nigh
> madness. it's possible - but vga vs qvga there isn't the
> factor (imho) :)

Why is it that viewing web pages, which are designed for 14" or 17"
screens is nigh madness, but viewing videos or movies, which are
designed for even larger displays, somehow makes sense to you?

Ken Young

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