⬅ Back to Rob Mayoff's Site Index

Beating the web into submission: killing fixed-width tables

Another big problem with a lot of web sites is that they use tables to force the content down to a narrow column. Oh how I hate that. It's quite popular, though. yahoo.com, nytimes.com, audible.com...

It's particularly bad when I'm using my T221, because then I'm using 32 pixel fonts, so a website that uses a 400px column gives me about 5 words (or less) per line, and huge expanses of empty margin. Useless!

My first approach to fixing this was another bookmarklet:

javascript:void((function(){function doit(es){for(var i=0;i<es.length;++i)if('width' in es[i])es[i].width='auto';}doit(document.getElementsByTagName('TABLE'));doit(document.getElementsByTagName('TBODY'));doit(document.getElementsByTagName('THEAD'));doit(document.getElementsByTagName('TFOOT'));doit(document.getElementsByTagName('TR'));doit(document.getElementsByTagName('TD'));doit(document.getElementsByTagName('TH'));})())

But it's pretty annoying to have to hit the bookmarklet all the time (or to use a location bar keyword). So I'm trying a different experiment. I put this in my userContent.css:

    width: auto ! important;

So far, it's bliss.

blog comments powered by Disqus