[Aptitude-devel] Bug#962926: Bug#962926: Images of aptitude screens are illegible due to being scaled to browser width

Axel Beckert abe at debian.org
Mon Mar 8 12:54:28 GMT 2021

Hi Norman,

thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiments on this issue.

Norman Rasmussen wrote:
> With respect to asciinema: I found two asciicast to svg converters:
>  - https://github.com/marionebl/svg-term-cli (MIT)

This seems not packaged in Debian so far.

>  - https://github.com/nbedos/termtosvg (BSD-3-Clause)

This is packaged since Bullseye:

> Both generated an animated svg by default, but have an option to extract
> a single frame (svg-term-cli), or all frames (termtosvg). I found that
> termtosvg rendered aptitude better than svg-term-cli.

It's also the only option from these two as of now. :-)

> I also tried the Secure Shell chrome extension (which uses hterm
> internally, both nassh and hterm as BSD-3-Clause), and while it's
> possible to capture a decent screenshot with it, the output is html and
> not svg.

The latter is no issue, but IMHO even a feature. The need to use a
Chrome extension is though a complete no-go.

Actually rather than SVG I'd rather use "aha" to generate HTML from
terminal output. An example is attached although the foreground on the
cyan lines should be black, not grey. (Not sure if this is a bug in
aha or if it is caused by myself removing some additional content
caused by the screen session around it.) So IMHO it currently would be
worse than what we have now.

It's though not completely trivial to trick a TUI application to pipe
output into aha without making it recognize that the output is not a
terminal. "script" and "screen" help there, but it's still non-trivial
to actually script it (in case that's wanted and needed — at least
currently it's not needed).

> I'm not sure how much switching to svg would help overall. Removing the
> 100% width would probably help the most.

While it might help in this case, I fear that it will cause other
readablity issues like being unreadable for those who require larger

> Refreshing the images at a higher resolution wouldn't hurt either.

Yes, but only if you also use some larger font. Otherwise the
situations gets worse.

> Both are easier than trying to change the image format.

Well, if we want to stay with images, SVG is IMHO the way to go. The
question is if HTML screenshots are not even better for e.g. blind
people because they're actually "readable screenshots". And they're
scalable, too.

		Regards, Axel
 ,''`.  |  Axel Beckert <abe at debian.org>, https://people.debian.org/~abe/
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