I came across this on the main page of Stack Overflow. If it matters, I'm using Firefox 3.5.2 on Windows 7 RC.

alt text http://img26.imageshack.us/img26/7936/stackoverflow123viewsth.png

  • 1
    Since Jeff updated this as by design, can I ask why? This does look just plain odd.
    – John Rudy
    Commented Aug 14, 2009 at 21:22
  • 68
    +1 for freehand circle
    – TheTXI
    Commented Aug 14, 2009 at 21:33
  • I did my best :) Commented Aug 14, 2009 at 21:35
  • It should just be replaced with "OMG!"
    – beggs
    Commented Sep 17, 2009 at 9:31
  • 1
    Wait, you gave a bounty for a question that you have the highest votes for? Just a way to make 100 extra reputation? Commented Oct 30, 2009 at 1:12
  • 3
    What's wrong with 16k views? I think thats a lot better than 16 kviews.
    – mk12
    Commented Nov 17, 2009 at 1:17
  • Andrew, Looks like the image is gone from Imageshack, can you reload it using the SE image tool? Commented Jun 4, 2015 at 21:14
  • @LanceRoberts Sorry, I don't have those images anymore. Commented Jun 5, 2015 at 14:51

8 Answers 8


Just change the word "views" to "Kviews" and "Mviews" and give it the same font color as the number itself so it's highlighted when the number is highlighted.

It'll fit. It'll make sense. It'll allow the same amount of precision as always.

Problem solved.

  • 8
    actually, you're right -- this is the way to go. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 4:02
  • 7
    @Jeff Atwood k would have been better than t. It's easier to understand: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/28126/what-does-mean-1-tview
    – alex
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 12:53
  • 1
    A winner is you! :) Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 15:06
  • 1
    Huzzah! I shall bask in the warm glow of acceptance for at least 31 seconds. /bask
    – Pollyanna
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 15:40
  • 5
    tviews? Wait, what? ugh. "t" is Tera. If you're going to go for non SI units, please be consistent. I understand that there may be some small friction between 1000 and 1024 with k being used, but unless you spell out "thousand" and "million" then the correct prefixes at "k" for thousand and "m" for million. The base 10 vs base 2 thing is not as much friction as teraviews and megaviews will create. Do not invent your own rules when existing industry standards are more suitable. Unless, of course, you are strict adherents to the Not Invented Here syndrome, or are in marketing.
    – Pollyanna
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 17:31
  • SI uses an i after the multiplier to signify binary, e.g. MiB, so 1024 views should be Ki views and there would be no confusion between binary and denary multiples. The real test will be what the StackExchange users think, but at least for SO can we have SI multipliers? Commented Nov 3, 2009 at 0:13
  • 1
    I hate it. (Useless padding) Commented Nov 14, 2009 at 9:04
  • 2
    So, I had to do a slightly convoluted Google search just to figure out what kviews were.. What about using <div class="warm" title="thousand(k) views">kviews</div> or, even better, slap <abbr title="thousand(k) views">kviews</abbr> in there?
    – user141160
    Commented Feb 21, 2010 at 8:17


This requires more scaling than 123 thousand views to fit 4 characters horizontally, but it doesn't try to cram the word "thousand" between the number and "views."

alt text http://img13.imageshack.us/img13/5080/100kviews.png

<div class="views">
    <div class="mini-counts supernova"
        style="height: 23px; font-size: 140%; padding-top: 2px;">123k</div>

What about the mathematical notation? 1e5, 2e5 look quite good and I'm sure almost all programmers understand it.

View counts are displayed as 2e5, 3e5, etc. http://img689.imageshack.us/img689/9040/picture1cw.png

  • 8
    I love it. Whahahahha.... Commented Nov 14, 2009 at 9:06

Here's the reason it's status-bydesign, since clearly you all find it an issue.

It's definitely intentional (thus not a bug), although I don't like it much myself.

  • 1
    just to be clear, I am open to changing this, if people help us out with some markup html/css fragments. Simply scaling the number down looks profoundly bad. Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 0:06


I think this looks pretty good. You lose some granularity on the number, but no extra CSS is required to shrink the numbers or realign stuff. Unfortunately, the leading '0' won't fit.

alt text http://img195.imageshack.us/img195/2610/100thousandviewspointmi.png


Here's some more precision with a smaller 'm'.

alt text http://img44.imageshack.us/img44/2479/point12millionviews.png

<div class="views">
    <div class="mini-counts supernova">.12<span style="font-size: 50%;">m</span>
  • +1 Of all ideas presented so far I like this one best. It has the advantage that it is consistent with nnk and nnm. The "thousand" doesn't fit in this scheme anyway. Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 21:25
  • 2
    this is better (and also something we experimented with) but it's a HUGE loss of precision. The problem is that the "m" is huge. Maybe if we just drop the "m" and go with .dd Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 21:44
  • 1
    @Jeff On the other hand, 100k+ view questions are rare. That fat, bright m screams "look at me, I'm special!" Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 22:12
  • Is it conceivable (probably not) to drop the m size down to the character size specified in Andrew's other answer? In other words, keep the decimal & number their current size, but drop the m and align both to text baseline? That would accomplish all necessary work, and the smaller m may look better. I don't mind the precision loss; let's be honest -- at 123,000 views, what's another thousand or ten? :)
    – John Rudy
    Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 23:47
  • @John I added your suggestion. Alternatively, with the extra space from the smaller 'm' we can have "0.1m views" also. Commented Aug 16, 2009 at 0:23
  • a nice effort, and we experimented with all these, but still not liking it. The only one I like is dropping the M entirely and going with .dd or d.d , but then people will complain about that too. Whichever way we pick, we lose, so I'm going with what we have. Commented Aug 16, 2009 at 3:02
  • How about just being geeky and state 0.123 x 10^6 :P Commented Oct 30, 2009 at 1:05

123 thousand views

(See my other answers for more possible solutions)

I took a crack at this for Jeff and everyone else to take a look at. I'm no CSS-whiz, but here it goes.

The "What is your best programming joke?" question wasn't in the main view when I started editing so I commandeered a random question.

I made sure to keep "views" vertically-aligned with "answers" because I think that would be the most visually-jarring thing if they were unaligned. This meant scaling down the views number somewhat.

I understand that Jeff is opposed to scaling the number, but maybe others won't find it so bad. I find it favorable to the current situation.

alt text http://img29.imageshack.us/img29/5598/100thousandviewsadjuste.png

.thousands-number {
.thousands-text {

<div class="views">
    <div class="mini-counts thousands-number supernova">123</div>
    <div class="thousands-text supernova">thousand</div>
  • Still looks a bit strange to me, have you tried a negative margin on the number instead of scaling? Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 0:38
  • 1
    Agree that it's strange, but it's 10X better than "views thousand" Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 0:54
  • Those small numbers don't look as bad as Jeff has made them out to be Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 1:45
  • I do appreciate the effort, but we've tried similar things and I don't like either one, visually. What we really need is a way to represent 100,000k+ in 3 characters. Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 5:10
  • maybe what we need is another visual effect on the number that implies "hundred thousand". The millions case is actually easier, since we can use 1.0, 1.1, 1.2 etc and that fits in 3 chars. Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 5:12

How about using a log10 scale for views and changing indicator to a popularity or interest index rather than raw number of views? You can then not use a number but a narrow color bar to indicate views. One can also add a title to the HTML element which would show the raw number on hover.


Maybe I'm missing something here, but I'll throw in two other possibilities:

  1. Make the view-count area wider, so that it can accommodate 4-digit counts (i.e. 1000K views, 1000M views). I guess the current version is trying to keep the view-count area the same width as the votes and answer count boxes, so maybe this isn't a reasonable solution.

  2. Or don't worry about representing very large values exactly. Maybe once you go over 99K views, you just display it as ">99K views". We already lose precision anyway once you get into the thousands, and is it really that important to know a question has exactly 100,254 views? On the other hand, if you still want to see the real view count, you could consider still displaying the total number of views in a smaller font, where "thousands" was displayed before.

Something like this:



(100,254 total)

Or, if you can't spare the extra space for the ">" character, add text above the view count to specify "greater than" (obviously with better alignment):

more than



(100,254 total)

Of course, then we have the same problem with how to display the total when it gets really large. Maybe we should just cap it and anything over 99K views is just displayed as ">99K" views.

If you still want to show the total view count somewhere, you could display the approximate view count on the questions tab, and then display the total view count only when you actually click on the question, perhaps above or below the title in a smaller font, or below the question next to the asker's information.

  • Jeff has been pretty adamant (with good reason, IMO) that the width and size of the view column not be changed. He has also been very concerned about loss of precision. We programmers are a finicky bunch when it comes to numbers: "If I can get 3 digits of precision, I want them!"
    – Pollyanna
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 18:14
  • @Adam: I agree with you (and Jeff) on the desire for precision, but I thought I'd provide an alternative nonetheless. Sometimes we programmers can be too finicky :) Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 18:21
  • Also, that's why I also suggest placing the actual view count somewhere on the question page, so you can see it when you view the question, even though the summary view would only display a very approximate value. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 18:22

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .