# Pixels per Inch (PPI). Measured as a line or a square?

Pixels per Inch (PPI) are not measured on a surface, but as a line. Learn and play with screen resolutions and physical properties of a screen.

For years, I tried to figure out screen resolution in relation to the **physical properties of a screen**. Only now I understood that the physical properties of a screen, that is the number of pixels, are not measured on a surface but as a line.

So when it says 300 pixels per inch, these are on **a line an inch long**. And there are many more on a square inch. There are 90,000 physical pixels on a square inch of such a screen. Of course, assuming the pixels are squares.

A bit one dimensional to mix up lines and surfaces when defining resolution 😉

### Calculations

To have this figured out made me happy. This new knowledge gave me insight and input for calculations.

The PPI of a display can be derived from the **diagonal size of a screen in inches** and the resolution (horizontal and vertical) in pixels. The calculation is done in two steps.

- Calculate the diagonal resolution in pixels, relying on the Pythagorean Theorem:

dₒ = √(w² + h²)

w = width and h = height - Calculation of the PPI is the total numbers of pixels divided by the diagonal size:

PPI = dₒ/dᵢ

With these two simple formulas, I can plug in the numbers.

Outcome for my e-reader

So for the screen of six inches diagonal and resolution of 1072 by 1448 it is:

dₒ = 1801.6

It is six inches, and so I divide by six.

PPI = 300.27.

Close! Pretty, pretty close. And now the theory is clear, I also can use and understand this calculator:

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