Anti-Aliasing Hall of Shame: Mac OS X’s Help Viewer

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Anti-Aliasing Hall of Shame
October 16th, 2005 • 4:14 pm

I am afraid this one has already been mentioned in this blog, but has not yet been officially inducted into the Anti-Aliasing Hall of Shame. So here it is…

In Mac OS X’s Help Viewer, do a search that will return results that are part of the iTunes help pages. You’ll get a list of results that look like this one:

Icon over dark background in Help Viewer

It might not look like much, but when you blow it up, you get this:

Icon over dark background in Help Viewer - Bigger

Not pretty… As noted in the original blog post, this particular problem is due to a poorly masked icon. In other words, the problem is not with on-the-fly anti-aliasing in Help Viewer, but with the mask associated with the existing anti-aliased iTunes icon used by Help Viewer.

It’s still an anti-aliasing problem, and it is still shameful that, today, in October 2005, with Mac OS X 10.4.2, iTunes 6.0, and Help Viewer 3.0, we still have to face such ugliness on our monitors.

For what it’s worth, the iTunes icon has the proper masks elsewhere in the system, since the same small icon has no problem with a dark background in the Finder:

Icon over dark background in Finder

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