Douwe Osinga's Blog: Colors

Sunday, July 13, 2003


I implemented a new color scheme for the site. All the colors are derived from one color using a mathematical scheme, loosely based on Goethes ideas about colors. Goethe and Newton had a deep dispute about the nature of color. Newton thought all colors could be broken up in a Red, Green and Blue component, while Goethe had a theory that was mostly esthetically oriented. Newtons theory was closer to the facts and is widely used in computerprograms.

Goethes ideas were not completely silly and are used in adapted versions in the setting up of colorschemes. Some people are naturals, other need a little help. I do this:

  • Choose the hue of a color from the color circle. Goethe had one, but the one in Photo shop will do just fine.

  • From this a very dark version is derived for the text and the borders (it is not exactly black) and two very light versions are derived for the background and the body of the texts (which is not totally white).

  • A much more intense version is derived from the opposite in the color circle for highlighting things

I'm not sure if it is a big improvement, so maybe I'm missing something. The plan is to evolve the colors of my website. The current color will be centrally stored. When a visitor arrives, he will be assigned a color that is close to the centrally stored one. When the user leaves my site, the number of visited pages is calculated and if it is high, the centrally stored color will be updated in the direction of the users color. Should be working anytime soon now.

it is working! From now on you'll the colors slowly changing.