To investigate the most efficient way to represent text in reading Chinese on computer displays, three typographic variables, character size (41′ arc/24 pixels and 60′ arc/32 pixels), character spacing (1/4 and 1/8 character width) and font type (Kai and Ming), were manipulated. Results showed that the reading speed for Chinese characters of Kai type in 24 pixels with 1/8 character spacing was the shortest. Character size significantly affected overall reading speed; in specific, text in 24-pixel characters was read faster than text in 32-pixel characters. Further eye-movement analyses revealed that text in smaller-sized characters had longer fixation duration, fewer fixations and fewer regressions than text in larger-sized characters. The interaction between character spacing and font type was observed on overall reading efficiency and on some eye-movement measures, which suggests that different character spacings should be considered in different font types for more efficient reading. Generally, characters in Kai font were easier to read with 1/8 character spacing than with 1/4 character spacing. The relationship between eye-movement measures and overall reading efficiency was further discussed.
Behaviour & Information Technology, 30(6), 797-808