Lights out style?

balacobaco balacobaco
Created: 3 years and 4 months ago
Would it be possible to have a "lights out" style for DDG pages? Including the domain and others, if possible.

White backgrounds hurt my eyes, and quickly give me headaches if I insist so. Dimming the screen helps a bit, but a different style is much better. In some websites, there are too many things written with a very light gray in a white background - impossible to read, I basically know they're there but ignore what is written.

Not so long ago, before the mess of HTML5/CSS3 have now, I could just use Opera browser (before its bad move to Chromium core) and turn on/off the page CSS, if so I wished. This still fixes the still for many pages.

But not for duckduckgo, unfortunately. :-/ For example, writing this post with the "style off" gives me a text area of
exactly 20 chars. Which is too weird, but the width is not defined for this page - but the height is!

I hope it can be... I may help, if that's needed. Should be easy enough. The only suggestion I give it to be able to easily choose the color for any pages (choice kept after with a simple cookie value for that session, also set/unset by GET var).

Seems like a good idea?

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Thank you all for the many comments, questions and suggestions. Particular thanks go to user x.15a2 for constantly monitoring, replying and helping so many users here. To continue these discussions, please head over to the DuckDuckGo subreddit.

Well as you probably know has customisation options. I am working on a design on the platform and what you said is included. I too am working in a dim lightened environment so here is a solution if you have firefox (if the link doesn't work search Turn Off the Lights). Please tell me if I have helped you.
posted by duckduckian 3 years and 4 months ago Link
Fastmail does the best I have seen: users can choose a personal CSS file for their use in the webmail pages (when not using programs to access their accounts). also has a simple but very effective way to do it. I love that place. :)

Yes, you have helped much - and I'm very happy to hear there is something coming! :D I did not know about that add on - although I have seen similar ones, and even imagined the idea possible. But doing it for many pages is not very practical or scalable.

I have read (somewhere) about the customs in DDG. But I don't see how this would fit me in practice... maybe I should give it a try (after searching to find where it is! hehehe)...
posted by balacobaco 3 years and 4 months ago Link
Thanks for the input. Here are a couple of themes that may help:

posted by x.15a2 Community Leader3 years and 4 months ago Link

And I would type (and did not hold'em!) one more thousand double-u's... I'm just gonna fiddle that in my bookmards and test it, right now!!! :D :D :D

I want to report your post as something VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY nice! (also without ctrl+c/v!!!)
posted by balacobaco 3 years and 4 months ago Link
Thanks. The links that I provided are referred to as bookmarkets and they can be used to access all DDG settings via a URL instead of saving settings to a non-user identifiable cookie or cloud settings.

To set up your bookmarket, go into settings, select the theme (and any other option that you prefer) then click on Show Bookmarklet and Settings Data, then use the bookmarklet URL as the static link that you created. That's it!

posted by x.15a2 Community Leader3 years and 4 months ago Link
( You forgot to say that "Show bookmarklet and settings data" appear only in the Advanced Settings, not in the menu that we can show in the result page... searched a bit more than needed there... hehe :)

That is so nice! Sorry to repeat this so much. It seems that people who like darker colors are minority... but I have two friends that will probably change to use almost only DDG when they receive my magic URL for black results... :)

Technically speaking, these forced setting don't work without JS enabled. Would is be possible? Or there is some reason that they must be done client side instead of server side? I have not digged to see exactly what they do, but I imagine (and just that, imagine without so strong arguments) that serving different CSS depending on cookie or GET vars should not make a big load difference for DDG... you can confirm or not if this is correct. I would like to know.

# A first nicer DDG for me... the cookie data is not here, I'm
# not sure it will reset the cookie's data when given. Will it?

I prefer to see results in the JS-less page. Just because it is a faster page, scrolls more nicely, and I can have pages that will load more nice and faster for me. I really prefer it. Clicking instead of wait and scroll is better, IMHO. But the colors... now I'm in sort of locked in this crossroad.
posted by balacobaco 3 years and 4 months ago Link
I think we need these settings working in JS-less duckduckgo too. Is it possible? Feasible? I really don't like the JS page so much... the other one is better, faster and looks (for me) much better! :)

And may have an option setup to choose theme? These light grays in white background are tiring... if it was lights out I would stay around much more minutes... I'm stopping now only for this.

See you around.
posted by balacobaco 3 years and 4 months ago Link
Not possible there, it's a JS-only feature.
posted by <hidden> • 3 years and 4 months ago Link
Sad to know that.

And I disagree that this is impossible. I don't know why it is this way in DDG, but maybe examples are good to ilustrate that:

In we have two possible themes. In our user preferences we choose which theme we'll use, from a list of two (that, of course, could be bigger).

Wikipedia, without JS, have a very big list of themes we can choose. And it will work very well.

The fact that these two examples are associated with an user account is not important, since we obviously can make the examples work with any site interaction we choose. The fact it: the pages will change themselves based on cookie values, with a small defined set of possible values.

Duckduckgo, please make this possibility feasible too for us.
posted by balacobaco 3 years and 4 months ago Link
Quote from balcobaco:
And I disagree that this is impossible. I don't know why it is this way in DDG
It's not possible with the way the DDG currently works, let me help to explain:

There are 4 versions of DDG: Default (JS Enabled), HTLM, Lite and TTY. The vast majority of users interface with the default version and that is where DDG's somewhat limited UI resources are directed (the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few).

There are browser add-ons like Greasemonkey that you might be able to use to customize the look of the HTML version of DDG to your liking.

posted by x.15a2 Community Leader3 years and 4 months ago Link
Microsoft, which changed its image search engine to add new things in the last few weeks, did, almost at the same time, build a version of this search that works without JS. None needed. A few things disappeared from this version (and I don't know if they exist in the fancier newer version, I did not try it), but for simple quick and almost direct searches, !bi is awesome. :)

I was really surprised to see that page working with fairly old browsers JS disabled. Results divided in pages (instead of dynamically grow to infinitum); links directly to image files (not redirection URLs, not really needed).

Conclusion: when I need to use image search I use that, almost always with enough good results. Depending on my humor I use DDG too to "train" it. But it is a slower page... I'm not so fond of it due that. But if I'm minority... well. I'll keep it mostly as that.
posted by balacobaco 3 years and 4 months ago Link