For this assignment, use the internet to research tips on designing for people who have visual impairments, such as color blindness. Choose a visual from a document or website to evaluate based on guidelines you have discovered. Then, include answers to the following questions in your overall research report:
For the visual example, what works well regarding meeting the needs of those viewers with visual impairments?
What suggestions would you have for revising the design to be more effective for this audience?
A person who suffers from vision impairment is said to have a problem of identifying visual objects. Unfortunately according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that individual’s eyesight cannot be corrected to a normal level, and he has to live with this problem for the rest of his or her life. Thus, the only to help such people is through the creation of online websites and objects that can help them live their lives like normal people. An individual who has a visual impairment has a limitation of the eye or the vision system which eventually leads to loss of acuity and the inability of that individual to see objects clearly as a healthy person (Stevens, 2013). There exist various ways to ensure various things such as sites are accessible to individuals who are visually impaired.
One of the best and cost effective ways to consider those who are visually impaired is through the colors that are used to signify certain objects or commands. With the development, innovation and invention in the information technology and the use of the internet in most of the activities carried out by men; there is a need to create a way and a method in which visual impaired can be in a position to use colors for item identification and commands. Web designers should ensure that they use properly actionable colors which are bright and can be detected from afar. In most cases, green is used to signify the start of a session while red is used to signify danger or an end of a session to accommodate them, the designer should consider using these actionable colors on his site.
In addition to the use of colors on a website, there is the need to for the designer of any website to give allowance for large texts that can be used by the visually impaired individuals. At times, major corrections are not needed to accommodate our brothers and sisters, and a mere technique and alterations by making text larger are all that the user requires. As a result, the designer should consider availing alternative style sheets with larger font sizes to ensure that their text layout does not break when text – only zoom is enabled in the browser. As a matter of fact, most of the individuals who are visually impaired would like to zoom in on the text without changing the scale of the entire site layout (Lamoureux, 2008). Some sites are known to have some incredible small print as their web designers are more focused on aesthetics and see the text as part and parcel of the overall visual appearance of the site. To design a suitable web for these individuals, there is the need to realize that aesthetics is not everything, especially if the web visitors cannot see what is written on the web.
Besides, the designer of a web may find it necessary to provide options and ways to increase the contrast of their sites. Some of the eye infections such as glaucoma lead to a significant decrease in contrast sensitivity. To help such individuals, a designer should ensure that his site is detailed –oriented often utilizing subtle gradients and slight shifts in value to create clean, modern and nonobstructive interfaces. Moreover, he may decide to offer an alternative site with more contrast between elements with bold font for readability purposes. Forming and creating high contrasting color between the texts and background the colors of the texts and background of the web helps individuals with the poor site to differentiate between the various objects in the web page. Using texts and colors with closely related colors such as black fonts on a gray background makes it difficult for people with normal eyesight but even more difficult to those suffering from poor eyesight.
The image of the car above may pose a great challenge and difficulties for a visually impaired individual, and the chances are that these individuals may not even notice the presence of that vehicle in a website. To start with, the picture is small in size, and it may not be visible to individuals who suffer from infections such as cataracts have a problem in identifying small objects and may need to zoom in the photo to make it visible. As a matter of fact, this photo is too small even to those individuals who have normal eyesight and thus the designer of the website should increase the image of the vehicle (Zhao, 2010). Large pictures and graphics are more visible and individuals can analyze the photos better than tiny pictures which are even harder to detect their presence
Moreover, the color of the vehicle may not work in favor of those who are visually impaired. Generally, such individuals can only detect bright colors such as orange and green that can be easily identified, but experiences some problems when it comes to dull colors such as purple and black. Considering that the picture may be on a website that has more other pictures with bright colors, an individual may pass the picture thinking it is blank and thus misses an opportunity to see it.
The picture can be improved through the increase of contrast between the car and the background of the car. The car is black in color while the background of the car is gray in color and makes it difficult to detect the graphic. A change of color to create high contrasting colors between the car and the background through the use of bright and shouting colors such as orange, red and green, the car can become visible to these individuals. On the other side, there is the need to increase the size of the photo to make it bigger because bigger objects are easily identified and detected as compared to small objects (Lamoureux, 2008). Enhancing the picture would increase the chance and likelihood that the picture will be visible to those suffer from poor eyesight. Finally, increasing the lighting of the background of the picture increases the probability that the picture can be detected despite having almost the same color as its background. By focusing more light on the vehicle or rather by increasing the light that is focusing on the object of interest, in this case, the vehicle will make it visible to everybody.
Lamoureux, E. L. (2008). Vision impairment, ocular conditions, and vision-specific function: the Singapore Malay Eye Study. Ophthalmology, 115(11), , 1973-1981.
Stevens, G. A. (2013). Global prevalence of vision impairment and blindness: magnitude and temporal trends, 1990–2010. . Ophthalmology, 120(12), , 2377-2384.
Zhao, J. E. (2010). Prevalence of vision impairment in older adults in rural China: the China Nine-Province Survey. Ophthalmology, 117(3), , 409-416.