Toyota 4 Runner
I created this simple international measure slider to give you an idea of how wide a measure can be. (Yes, I know, it’s weird.) This little tool looks only at language and font family, but you’ll see that these two variables alone can lead to some extreme results. Just compare German or Polish with English or, even better, German set in Verdana with English set in Georgia.
The difference is huge: 10 German words set in Verdana can be 38.5 ems wide, while 10 English words set in Georgia are just 22 ems wide. In most default browser settings, that would be 616 pixels versus 352 pixels. You see, these two simple factors should have a major impact on the grid.
A good measure is essential for articles. I know that the Web is not just articles. You could very well be working on a Web app with very little text to read. But even then, starting with the measure when defining breakpoints might be a good idea.