Re: [dev] [PATCH] Don't make bold text bright with default color

From: Yuri Karaban <>
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 2014 23:04:55 +0300

>>>>> "REVC" == Roberto E Vargas Caballero <> writes:

>> Bold colors are brightened to stand out even more. But with the
>> light background and dark foreground brightening acts contrary
>> making the letters less emphasized.

    REVC>> It is not the first time this question is discussed in the
    REVC>> list, and your patch is the second about this issue.

I was not aware that it's a sore subject here ;-)

Thank you for pointing, I found several topics only when searched
" bold st". But they there solving different problem
(they were deciding is brightening needed with bold or not).

I'm not objecting against brightening, it's a standard behavior. The
only exception to brightening, which is standard to other virtual
terminals, that if no color was specified with ANSI sequence no
brightening should be applied.

>> Don't jeer, believe you understood that I mean de-facto standards
>> (xterm, rxvt, gnome terminals based on libvte, etc.). Every
>> terminal which I tried behaves consistently (doesn't brighten
>> implicit default

    REVC>> Suckless software is not a place where the sentence "do it in
    REVC>> this way because another do it" has meaning. I understand
    REVC>> your point of view, but I don't like the idea of having
    REVC>> different behaviour based in if the background color is the
    REVC>> default or not (what happen if you have the same problem with
    REVC>> your default background?), but I think maybe a patch with a
    REVC>> new option to st could be good. What opinion do you have
    REVC>> guys?

It's not a question of internal design but question of
interoperability. Since such behavior is standard between virtual
terminals many software is relying on it.

It was an argument in past:

So I can give you an example with plain 'top', you can compare:

xterm -fg black -bg \#c0c0c0 -e top

and how it looks on st (with the same fg/bg colors!):

st -e top

I agree that this behavior is odd, but since it's the expected behavior
by most programs probably it should be adopted.

PS. On my opinion, for the terminals with light background and dark text
it would be great if bold text was darkened instead of brightening
(e.g. in emacs many packages are configuring foreground faces depending
on background light/dark). But many application tuned for standard
behavior would look differently.

Quidquid discis, tibi discis
Received on Tue Apr 15 2014 - 22:04:55 CEST

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