Being a Ux Designer and Front-End Developer, I am happy to see this big push for the focus on accessibility. When Ux meets ADA compliance it means more than creating a descriptive <alt> from a coding perspective. It means more than highly contrasted layouts from a design perspective. When it comes to interaction, if a user with working vision can immediately take action based on what they’ve read or have seen, then, someone who is visually impaired should be able to act upon something they want to do as soon as they hear it.
Before I consider the design I look at the copy, I read through it and I ask myself if at any point would I as a reader want to take action on any part of this? If so consideration of where links, forms, buttons should be placed should come into play for those who are visually impaired.
We shouldn’t make them read through the entire paragraph or list item (unless it is necessary for them to read through everything before taking action) to access a link or button.
For someone with working sight, sure a large button with some padding and margin around it looks great and makes me want to click it but it is so far removed from that associated paragraph that anyone visually impaired would find that button to be a hassle.
So what would I do? Place a link to take action right there in the midst of the paragraph and written content AND add that lovely giant flat button after the fact.
Give the visually impaired the ability to be instantly gratified.
I am not my user or rather target audience but I am my own client. That’s right. I am revamping my own portfolio website. Creating the written content is tedious enough but then there’s curating my content. All of my work to display nicely on any device a potential target audience member can get their hands on to access my website. You know the whole responsive bit which isn’t my immediate concern at the moment.
Unlike most of my projects, I personally don’t have to answer what do I want my target audience to know and what exactly do they want to know? Not just that but: what don’t I want to tell them? Who don’t I want to attract? Who do I want to attract? Continue reading →
Let me paint a picture: Spring 2010, I accepted my first contract with Trevelino Keller. They had a deadline coming up to roll out Ritz & Wolf Camera & Image’s website and the previous web developer was missing in action.
It never dawned on me that being able to read and understand another’s code was a skill set that I’d ever need. I was self-taught in HTML & CSS. I had gone through tutorials and frequented A-List-Apart up to that point. I was used to notes and guidance. I had neither this time, yet I found myself not only having to alter but add to the existing code.
I scrapped all but 10% of it. I couldn’t understand it, what the previous designer was doing and where they were going. There were zero comments. My project load immediately increased by two weeks and I had already agreed on a flat fee for the project.
This project isn’t a key portfolio piece because of the way it looks. I had no say over that matter by the time I came onto the project. I did however have a say in its structure.
“Write the vision and make it plain so that those that read it may run with it.” Hab 2:2
I was told in high school to write my notes so that someone else could understand them. This holds ever-so-true for writing code. I wrote the cleanest code I could. I consider the individuals who build websites to be just as much users as those for whom they are built.
I decided to continue to learn to code for understanding and expansion with ease, not just for myself but for anyone else that would happen to come across my code.