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Well a black background allows to use flashy colors for highlighting, which I prefer to better differentiate keyword and syntax. The thing I don't like with the black background is that dark colors are by fact nearer to the black, which kinda make them harder to differentiate. For the grey, I think it is a good compromise, but I just think it is near to all colors. I don't really think the brain or the eye are made for either of those pattern: you also have to consider people read white paper, which is a passive source of light, unlike a screen. If someone just liked the dark background, maybe it can begin to be an habit, and maybe the brain gets used to it, unlike the people who have got tested by the scientist. And don't forget there are font render system like the Apple one which are totally not made to smooth font with a black background. But that's just a matter of preference. I think the most important thing about code highlighting is how the syntax is highlighted with a lot of different colors. Highlighting types and instructions with the same color is useless and is worsw than no syntax highlighting at all. I'm gonna adapt my color preferences to a new white background theme. Of course don't compare reading human text and source code, it's two very different languages: white background is better for plain text. By the way here is an interesting application: highlight human language grammar: verbs, subjects, objects, misc words etc. would be fun. I wonder if people like Chomsky thought of it.
Toggle Commented Nov 17, 2010 on Code Colorizing and Readability at Coding Horror
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Nov 17, 2010