Accessibility

—Part One

What is Accessibility?

In layman’s term according to Wikipedia, the definition of accessibility is “a concept that focuses on enabling access for people with disabilities, or special needs, or enabling access through the use of assistive technology; however, research and development in accessibility brings benefits to everyone.

The Canadian Oxford Dictionary defines accessible and accessibility as “readily reached, entered, or used… posing no obstacles… easy to understand and appreciate…”

Why is Accessibility relevant in design principles?
Because accessible design is not only for people who are mobility challenged. The idea of accessible design impacts all of us as it relates to a much broader population. By adopting a broader and open design philosophy, you improve your odds of attracting potential clients who will buy your products or services.

Example: The use of larger body text and titles improves legibility, making it easier for anyone, regardless of their age or circumstances to read and understand your intended message.

Make better use of colour. A high percentage of people are colour blind or have a colour deficit of one kind or another.

What does that mean
Why is there such a strong impulse by business owners to fill an entire page with stuff? Do they feel they’re not getting value if they stick to one message?

Make use of the medium As it relates to colour blindness, it’s interesting to note that most business owners, executives, and employees, are utterly unaware of how the issues affecting colour blind people can impact their company. Businesses must be aware that a substantial amount of what they produce (documents, goods for sale, websites etc.) can be difficult for colour blind people to fully access, but they should also be aware of the need to improve accessibility.

As a business owner, it’s important to be mindful of this segment of the population. The vast majority of those working in real estate, for example, have no idea that 12% of men can not fully access most of what they produce.

As a design studio, our philosophy at Evolving Media & Design Inc.® is to educate and advise our clients, one customer at a time, of the fact that if as a business owner you adopt suitable changes to your products and services to accommodate people with colour blindness it will improve your bottom line.

In our next segment we’ll provide some examples of problems experienced by colour blind people in everyday business situations.

Published in Evolving Media Chronicles
Written by Jeff Poissant, RGD
Edited by Kevin Burns

ISSN 2562-5578 (Print)
ISSN 2562-5586 (Online)

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