What if you could reinvent Firefox theming?

Jared Wein jaws at mozilla.com
Thu Sep 29 07:47:43 UTC 2016

Please see replies inline.

On Thu, Sep 8, 2016 at 6:41 PM, Justin Dolske <dolske at mozilla.com> wrote:

> On Thu, Sep 8, 2016 at 8:41 AM, Jared Wein <jaws at mozilla.com> wrote:
>> [...]
> What capabilities would you like themes to have?
>> [...] Also at 3% of responses were requests from users who require larger
>> icons and improved readability of the browser's user interface for improved
>> accessibility. Not far behind, and ironically next in the order of
>> responses, were requests for a smaller browser UI (2%). These users
>> generally want to maximize the amount of screen space that web pages can
>> use.
> I'm a little surprised "make things smaller" came in so low!
> "Make things bigger" is somewhat curious... On Windows this is typically
> done by adjusting the display scaling factor in the OS settings. I wonder
> if people don't know about that, or are looking to make Firefox --
> specifically -- larger than normal. I'm unclear on what Linux offers these
> days, and while I think OS X supports this internally it's not exposed in
> any UI. (Apple's preferred route seems to be screen zooming. Which is neat,
> I use it all the time and have normal vision.) So I'd be curious to
> understand this use-case better.
Web browsers are very likely the most used application on a users system.
They likely see the browser's toolbar more than they see their desktop.
When it comes to changing the size of the UI for accessibility reasons,
venturing in to operating system preferences may seem like a far off trek.

We could easily handle this within Firefox by making something very close
to the layout.css.devPixelsPerPx pref. Adjusting that pref to a larger
value has the outcome of getting a larger UI for the full browser, though
it also affects web content.

> Separately from themes, I think it would be a good idea to consider adding
> preferences UI for the default zoom-level of page content in Firefox. I
> think it's technically easy to do the same thing with chrome, but that
> would seem pretty strange to expose.

Yeah, I think a default zoom level here would be nice, but I think we would
want different settings for chrome and content. Having a similar pref to
layout.css.devPixelsPerPx that applies uniquely to chrome would solve this
and it won't cause the layout to get ugly the same way that making fonts
larger through the operating system will.

I don't think it would be too strange to expose if it's done right. In
Options > Advanced > Accessibility we could have a checkbox that says
"Increase the size of toolbars and menus".
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