venerdì 6 luglio 2012


Accessibility: a new color picker for accessible web design

Accessibility is an important word in web design. Accessibility takes care of those people who have impairments that make it difficult for them to access web page information.

Typically, web sites providing services to citizens must be accessible otherwise some people get discriminated because they cannot reach the services others can easily.
Visually impaired people use tools called screen-readers to read web pages aloud but this magic works only if the web page is designed accordingly to accessibility specification.
WCAG 1.0 and now the latest WCAG 2.0 are W3C standards addressing these difficulties among others.
One important accessibility issue is the color contrast between foreground and background colors. Those colors must fulfill a constraint in order to minimize visibility issues like deuteranopia, protanopia and tritanopia
and let the reading to be easy for everyone.
With this goal in mind the web designer needs to find color combinations that are part of a color scheme pleasant for the final user,  according with the designer inspiration and fulfilling the accessibility standard.
On line there are some tools aiding to find the combination that matches all those needs. Unfortunately, even if they are very useful, the work process is the following: specify the base color, specify the second color and
check if they fulfill the requirements; if not, find another color and start again.
Who, like me, doesn't like this way of working by trial and error, thinks this is an un-necessary waste of time and they hopes for someone who will improve those tools one day.
Now there is a new color picker out there which simplifies the way of choosing the color combination: the accessibility color picker.
This very simple tool is based on the concept that, provided a base color (either a background or a foreground),  you pick only a corresponding accessible color from the color map. You will be sure your choise is accessible
and you can focus only on how pleasant the two colors are. In other words, you can focus on your creativity only, being sure every choise is accessible.
If you are a web designer, give it a try and let us know.

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