Tooltip Plugin Color Feedback, Please

So the pinyin tooltip WordPress plugin I mentioned before is slowly but surely coming along. We’re alpha testing now, and discovering weird discrepancies between versions of WordPress. Hopefully those won’t be too hard to fix.

One of the options supported by the plugin is choice of tooltip background. Sinosplice currently uses plain white, but the script it’s based on uses a nice blue color. Here are some of the options I’ve put together (note: tooltip boxes and text are not actual sizes or proportions):

If you’re interested in using this tooltip, is there any default color you’d definitely want? If so, please let me know. As things stand now, I think I’ll go with the first four below (dropping the black one).


John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.


  1. The more colour options the better, but if I had to choose I’d go with the gray or yellow.

    You’ll make the hanzi nice and big, right?

    • Yeah, the Chinese characters will be larger in the popup than in the original text. That’s part of the design: to let the tooltip act as a “magnifying glass.”

  2. Hi John,

    Actually, I like the dark one…

    The boxes are done using images right? So why not allow the user to specifiy their own image, so they can create one which matches their theme?

    Make the default text dark, but assign a class to the div so that users can specify the colour they want via their stylesheet.

    Obviously you’d have a default for the average user, but this would allow much more flexibility for users to get the tool tip to match their theme.

  3. *Checks your Avatar info “9.9 years in China”

    BTW Jon, when’s your 10 years in China anniversary? Or did it already pass..!

  4. I would go either blue or yellow, but the black might actually go well with some color schemes.

    Also, I second Joel in wanting nice, big characters. Often I use these sorts of things not just for pinyin/translation but to enlarge characters that are in small fonts.

  5. The yellow. Not only does it look pleasing to the eye in the Sinosplice theme context but also the cultural context.

  6. I agree with GAC that the black goes well with some color schemes, much easier to read.

  7. Alexander Ververis Says: July 22, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    I’d really like it to be customizable! Couldn’t it just take html color codes or something?

    Remember: the easier it is to integrate into a site, the more people will actually use it.

    • I agree with you… “Easier to integrate” actually means “no settings,” however. More options and settings is more complexity. So I’m going for a balance between the two.

      For anyone with even basic knowledge of CSS, it will be very easy to customize this plugin.

  8. Ray Walsh Says: July 23, 2010 at 9:28 am

    My comment was a bit too short.


  9. Looks great. Agree on the black being the one to ditch. Never been a fan of reading white on black. Hope to see it finished soon.

  10. My comment was a bit too short too!

  11. I prefer the black one because it’s easiest to see the characters with.

  12. @Mike – I am about 99.9 percent sure it’s 08/08. 🙂

  13. Is it too late to comment? I like yellow!

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