I was reading "Ordering Disorder" Grid principles of Web design from Khoi Vinh, in where he mentions that without much explanation.

He got a long copy (8 units wide) inside a column of 10 units, in where originally he was using the most left unit as a left margin and the most left as a right margin. He moved the copy to the beginning of the most left unit, leaving 2 empty units at the far right for the reason of leaving it as far left as possible.

The original idea looks fine for me, with balanced space at both sides. Here how it looks. And the final idea here

Why exactly?

UPDATE: As required, I provide more info to give more context from the book, hope it helps.

One - Two - Three - Four

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    Seems wholly opinion based to me. You want to follow visual alignment, but there is no reason for one image over the other from a design perspective besides opinions – Zach Saucier Mar 24 '15 at 1:59
  • Have to agree with Zach. That's just Khoi's opinion. – DA01 Mar 24 '15 at 2:26
  • Opinion based. The second follows the grid more, but that's about it. But content is usually best served when you take the content more into account that the grid. – KMSTR Mar 24 '15 at 7:42
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    @ZachSaucier I dont think this is as opinion based as one thinks. Its probabably becasue oif the F shaped scanning most humans (westerners) do on a webpage. – joojaa Mar 24 '15 at 8:26
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    Franco, could you paste some of the related text? Might help us answer for you. I think the F-Pattern is relevant but not the only thing at work because both follow the F-Pattern. Hard to say without the text though. – Ryan Mar 24 '15 at 12:12

Humans have a tendency scan webpages to the far left of the browser window in a F shaped pattern. It can be centered but if you have some data/distracting content on the left of the main content it gets easily prioritized over the content you want to show (at least until you educate your audience)

Some links explaining this:

The individual design is preference of designer. But it can be motivated. Other reasons might include the near impossible task of making justified text in webpages.

TL:DR: People read webpages different from the way they read books.

  • Additional: graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/questions/6334/… – Ryan Mar 24 '15 at 12:09
  • Not all humans, though. The opposite is true for those that read languages right to left. – DA01 Mar 24 '15 at 15:11
  • Also, I'm not entirely sure the F-shape pattern really applies to Khoi's example. – DA01 Mar 24 '15 at 15:12
  • @DA01 yeah, the f pattern does not allways apply. But it does mostly apply when users are scanning your webpage. Which is the initial expectation for most sites. So many times you need to get past this stage mostly. Anyway i would personally prefer the inverse of this but i cant overcome how bulk of humans in western culture operate. Also i suspect this may be a too literal interpretation. – joojaa Mar 24 '15 at 15:32
  • The f-shape is also usually an argument for navigation, rather than content. So yea, we really need Khoi here to answer the question. :) – DA01 Mar 24 '15 at 15:36

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