Avatar size rule

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
I am wondering about this rule:
Avatars:
Size of avatars is limited to 100x100 pixels or 8 KB. Static image avatars are preferred in this forum, ....
-- Cinefactus in "Rules and Guidelines" (#4)

1. When I upload an avatar, the Avatar Editor dialog says "It is recommended that you use an image that is at least 200x200 pixels." (Which I did, I hope without offending.)

2. I looked at the profile pages of several prominent members of the forum, including staff. Almost all of them have a profile image which is larger than 100x100 and 8 KB. Most are about 192 x 192, and sizes I saw varying from 5 KB to 58 KB.

It seems that photos for the profile page are scaled down to 192 x 192 if they are larger than that, and scaled further to 96 x 96 for display in threads (i.e., beside the post where the poster's identity and information is shown).

3. What is the purpose of this rule -- for example, to conserve storage space on the server, to reduce data transmission and page load times, etc.?

4. If we're going to have a two-part rule specifying a limit of m x n resolution "or" SIZE KB, could we please clarify whether that means (a) an image must satisfy both conditions i.e. have resolution less than or equal to m x n and file size less than or equal to SIZE KB; or (b) an image must satisfy at least one of the conditions. For example, under the current rule, it is not clear to me whether an image of 120x120 pixels resolution but file size 7 KB would be acceptable.
 

cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
I made the post clearer that you must satisfy both conditions. I changed the size to 300x300.
We have had problems with people uploading large images for spam, although more in signatures than in avatars.
 

cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
If you can come up with reasonable size guidelines I can change it again.
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
If you can come up with reasonable size guidelines I can change it again.
I recommend a larger limit for file sizes: 100 KB. Here are a few reasons why:

a. The default male and female images, which we see a lot of among new members, are avatar_male_l.png, 89 KB; and avatar_female_l.png, 88 KB.

b. As previously noted, avatars of prominent forum members that I surveyed ranged up to 58 KB. Looking today at our 12 highest-posting members, I find 8 of them are over 10 KB; the largest, the boar shield belonging to a censor, is 42 KB.

c. My current 200x200 weaver avatar image is 15 KB.

If 100 KB seems too large to you, then here's an alternative. The largest images I've noted are PNG files, and PNG is a lossless image format which is generally not well suited for compression of photographic images, although it's often very good for computer drawings. By converting PNG files to JPG, we can achieve significant size reductions in some cases, such as Male avatar: 89 KB --> 17 KB; female avatar: 88 KB --> 17 KB; boar shield avatar: 42 KB --> 13 KB.

So perhaps 25 KB would be adequate as an upper limit for JPG image files.

However, converting from PNG to JPG results in loss of transparency, so the default male and female avatars would lose their "faded" look -- though there's probably a way of fixing that with a photo editor.

As for resolution, I think 300 x 300 is fine for an upper limit, and 192 x 192 could be recommended as the "ideal" resolution, since if it's larger than that, it's going to be scaled down anyway.

The language is also very clear now, thank you.
 

Issacus Divus

H₃rḗǵs h₁n̥dʰéri diwsú
I really had no idea how much thought went to profile picture configurationation. Wow.
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

μεσσηγυδορποχέστης
In the days when I had avatars, I probably had only a vague idea of their actual size, and even less of what exactly was allowed, but assumed that anything that the site managed to upload fell into the permitted category. Some might have been banned as 'disturbing', but presumably they weren't excessively so, or at least nobody said they were. They were mostly mediaeval manuscript doodles, as I recall.
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
In the days when I had avatars, I probably had only a vague idea of their actual size, and even less of what exactly was allowed, but assumed that anything that the site managed to upload fell into the permitted category. Some might have been banned as 'disturbing', but presumably they weren't excessively so, or at least nobody said they were. They were mostly mediaeval manuscript doodles, as I recall.
That was probably very sensible. Since many avatars were over the official size limit, it's clear it was not zealously enforced.

I just raised the issue because I wanted to have a clear conscious regarding my 200 x 200, 15 KB avatar. Sometimes maybe I pay too much attention to rules.
 

cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
That was probably very sensible. Since many avatars were over the official size limit, it's clear it was not zealously enforced.

I just raised the issue because I wanted to have a clear conscious regarding my 200 x 200, 15 KB avatar. Sometimes maybe I pay too much attention to rules.
The only real rules in the forum are to treat others respectfully and don't spam ;)
 

Issacus Divus

H₃rḗǵs h₁n̥dʰéri diwsú

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member

Issacus Divus

H₃rḗǵs h₁n̥dʰéri diwsú

Issacus Divus

H₃rḗǵs h₁n̥dʰéri diwsú
It does seem rather unique.
 
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