Cameron talks about the move from 800×600 to 1024 and beyond.
Letâ€™s face it: The jump from developing for 800Ã—600 to 1024Ã—n is inevitable; not only inevitable, but just around the corner, too. Many of you are considering the jump. Some of you have already leaped. I suspect that some time in 2007 most of us will knock out comps optimized for 1024px resolution rather than 800px if weâ€™re not doing so already.
But perhaps just as important as when it will happen is how: Whatâ€™s the proper width for a layout optimized for 1024?
With 800×600 itâ€™s easy: Account for browser chrome and scrollbars (usually 40-50px) and then use as much of the remaining space as possible. This usually means a layout width of 750-760px.
If we use the same logic for 1024, browser chrome is still the same, so that leaves us with 974-984px as the â€œidealâ€? width. However, many users (including myself) donâ€™t browse full screen, especially as display resolution in increased. Almost as if thereâ€™s an inverse relationship between browser width and display resolution â€” as the display gets wider, the browser width gets smaller (proportionately).
Additionally, in a time we all are, or should be, considering grid usage in layouts, is a random number like 974 an optimal number for dividing a layout into its necessary elements â€” sidebar(s), main content area, and so on? Fluid/liquid layouts are another issue, but even those have to be optimized for a minimum width.