This is huge news.
A couple of days ago, I was messing about with CSS3 transitions and I noticed that, in Safari at least, text rendering gets messed up for the duration of the transition. WebKit uses sub-pixel anti-aliasing for font smoothing by default; apparently this gets disabled when a GPU-accelerated CSS transition is executed, causing the text to be rendered using “regular” anti-aliasing.
I haven’t found a satisfactory workaround. This Stack Overflow thread recommends using either
-webkit-transform: translateZ(0px); or, curiously, explicitly setting sub-pixel smoothing (
-webkit-font-smoothing: subpixel-antialiased) even though it should be enabled by default. Either way, you’ll end up with a) thinner (and uglier) fonts even before a transition or b) a slightly less noticeable change—but a change nonetheless—in font rendering during a transition. It’s not an ideal situation.
Feel free to comment on this post if you know of a workaround that eliminates the problem without one having to force regular anti-aliasing.
Update: I found the original bug report, first filed in 2009 (!): https://bugs.webkit.org/show_bug.cgi?id=23364
Meanwhile, more and more native apps are actually using web views, either for parts of their UI (like a timeline in a social network), or for all of their UI. If people aren’t told, they don’t notice it. If people do know, their opinions mostly seem to come down to confirmation bias. Today, we’re at a point where web apps, if done right, are virtually indistinguishable from native apps. Chris Tan points out:
Take a look at the this blog post attempting to expose the advantages of Hybrid vs Native which not only uses Instagram as an example of a Native app but it is specifically used as a example of a GREAT native app and why you might want the performance and smoothness of Native. This is somewhat hilarious, because it is in fact a hybrid application that uses a web view to render all of its content.
A great write up on the native mobile vs. web app debate.
CSS regions are an exciting technology that make it easier than ever to create rich, magazine-like layouts within web content. Regions have been under development in WebKit for a while now, and we’re delighted to tell you that they are available for use in Safari on iOS 7, Safari 7 on Mavericks, and Safari 6.1 on Mountain Lion.
It took a while to wrap my brain around how it works, but this seems really useful.
And just like that, I am 100 times more interested in Opera’s future projects. (via Stuff & Nonsense)