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UK freelance journalist, author
and writer Sean McManus

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Rainbow: the websafe colour picker

Note: Because computer monitor resolutions have improved (and even mobile devices have good colour palettes now), it's no longer necessary to use web safe colours in your website design. There's still quite a bit of interest in them, though, judging by the number of people who visit this page, so I've left this archive article otherwise intact.

Want to create a new colour scheme for your website that you can be confident will render consistently between browsers and hardware platforms?

Screenshot of Rainbow

Click the picture for a full size enlargement, then use the back button to return here

Use Rainbow, a freeware program for Windows, to pick your colour scheme. You can display up to nine colours side by side on screen and edit them to see how they will look alongside each other. Two of the boxes include text so you can see how the colours contrast with white and black text. There's also an option to create a palette of random colours for you to start mixing the red, green and blue in.

Rainbow is freeware. You can distribute the unmodified program for free from your website, on your CD Rom or by copying it for friends. The program includes adverts for my books, but there are no unrequested pop-ups, nags, delays or other irritants and there is no connection to the web (the adverts are all stored in the program). Rating 5 - Good The software has been awarded 5 out of 6 and a rating of 'Good' by

The installer program will install Rainbow and the Visual Basic 5 runtime library. It will also create an uninstall option that cleanly removes every trace of Rainbow from your machine.

It's a litigious world we live in, so I have to make clear that you install this software at your own risk.

Books by Sean McManus

Scratch Programming in Easy Steps

Scratch Programming in Easy Steps

Raspberry Pi For Dummies

Raspberry Pi For Dummies

Learn to program with the Scratch programming language, widely used in schools and colleges.

Set up your Pi, master Linux, learn Scratch and Python, and create your own electronics projects.

Coder Academy

Coder Academy

Cool Scratch Projects in Easy Steps

Cool Scratch Projects in Easy Steps

Learn to make games and other programs in Scratch 2.0, and make a web page in HTML, with this highly interactive book for 7-10 year olds.

Discover how to make 3D games, create mazes, build a drum machine, make a game with cartoon animals and more!

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©Sean McManus.