March 16, 2016

Let’s Talk About:

Making a Web for Everyone

The pride that we take in crafting great web experiences doesn't extend only as far as our own monitors, or even to our circle of colleagues and friends. We consider a project well done when it works for everyone. Along with ubiquity, one of the great promises of the web is accessibility. For many of us, that means being able to get online almost anywhere and from a wide variety of devices. For others, it means being able to access the web despite barriers associated with physical or mental disabilities.

With the dramatic rise in usage of mobile devices, we've found that these two perspectives on accessibility have a lot in common. Our desktop environments may be static and controlled, but our mobile devices are with us in a variety of environmental and social situations where our ability to use them may be limited, creating situational disability.

Accessibility is thought to acknowledge a small and vulnerable population, but accessible web design benefits everyone.

Building Know Lupus with React

Community Thoughts on Making a Web for Everyone...

  1. 1. All Technology Is Assistive “Assistive technology” implies a separate species of tools designed exclusively for those people with a rather narrow set of diagnostic “impairments” — impairments, in other words, that have been culturally designated as needing special attention, as being particularly, grossly abnormal. But are you sure your phone isn’t a crutch, as it were, for a whole lot of unexamined needs?
  2. 2. Inclusive design toolkit Designing for inclusivity not only opens up our products and experiences to more people with a wider range of abilities. It also reflects how people really are. All humans are growing, changing, and adapting to the world around them every day. We want our designs to reflect that diversity.
  3. 3. Microsoft's Radical Bet On A New Type Of Design Thinking Let’s say you’d like to build a phone that’s easier to interact with while you’re driving. You could just try to study people driving with their phones. Or you could actually study how the blind use their phones. How do they know when their phones are paired with another device? What aural feedback do apps need to provide, when opened? You could build those features into a phone, so that by serving someone disabled, you serve everyone else better.
  4. 4. Why I Care About Accessibility I think that companies and people that focus on making accessible experiences will be more successful in the market, not just in today’s landscape, but in whatever landscape happens to come around the corner a year or two from now.
  5. 5. Accessibility for Business and Pleasure An accessibility program fueled by addressing a complaint can only be sustained a limited time before it runs out of steam. A mature program grounded on a commitment to ensure people with disabilities can participate helps embed accessibility as a core value and lasting concern.

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