What’s with Solarized Light on Visual Studio Code?

What’s with Solarized Light on Visual Studio Code?

Solarized is one of the most popular syntax themes. It’s been available on every text editor/IDE I’ve ever used and it’s incredibly well known. At first glance it may not look like much but it’s a great theme for a few reasons:

  • It has enough contrast. It’s easy to identify what every string is.
  • It’s easy on the eyes
  • It’s very consistent. The colors for the theme well defined and it’s easy to identify.

Images from Ethan Snoover’s blog

I generally use the Solarized Light theme at work and recently started trying out Visual Studio Code. So imagine my disdain when I saw this:

The colors are wrong! Why? Why would the colors be wrong? The colors are so well defined. What’s even worse is that when you look for Solarized-inspired custom themes, they’re all wrong too! Some don’t even try to be accurate, some come close but fall short with specific colors, some get font weights wrong, some get almost everything right except for the comments, some come very close but then don’t apply the colors to the workbench. It’s mind blowing. If anyone has any ideas as to why this is, please leave a comment. It makes no sense that something so simple would be messed up.

Who would ship an editor with a knockoff Solarized and then try to pass it off as the real thing?

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