Golden Bullets

Wanted - golden bullets western poster

Reading Time: 4 minutes Bulleted lists break up dense blocks of content. They make scanning for discrete content and reading easier for visual readers. A Bronze content user experience (UX) elevates to Golden. Meanwhile, people using a screen reader hear more meta-information. Depending on mode and setting, each list and bullet announces. The UX remains Bronze or lower. With […]

Simple Labels

Reading Time: 7 minutes Labelling is a positive strategy. A good label makes a complex concept understandable, actionable, and memorable. These benefits apply negatively when labels stigmatise, discriminate, or cause offense. Simple Labels (and Math) In the  June 2021 News, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recognised that regional labels applied to Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) variants stigmatised the areas […]

Choose the right medicine

Choose the right medicine from the following interactions: button, checkbox, or radio button

Reading Time: 5 minutes I’m irritated when those arrays of filters or options we are offered to update lists of data are badly coded. You know, those lozenge-shaped UI components designers refer to as pills or capsules? Like the pharmaceuticals they describe it’s vital we prescribe the correct one. They look like a bunch of buttons and update the […]

Happy Writing

happy face writing happy

Reading Time: 2 minutes According to a Google search for, “happiest language in the world” the happiest language is Spanish. Chinese is the least happy. Could this help explain why developers, designers and writers working in English are among the most miserable b’stards online?  Example The following is a random example from the Tesco.com homepage that offers just two […]

The ‘One day’ Award – Shortlist 2021

ableism - One Day Award nominations 2021

Reading Time: < 1 minute One Day everyone publishing web content will understand when their best visual design decision results in a poor content experience. In the meantime, let’s lament the loss of common sense. I award the Fandom’s Blackadder Wiki a meritorious mention for its near impossible link colour contrast ratio of 2.35:1! Who would intentionally do that. Really. […]

Altruistic Alternative Attributes

altruistic-alternative-attributes

Reading Time: 5 minutes In this post I: Revisit the misunderstanding between the alternative text attribute (alt) and its value. Consider the editorial intention of images that convey emotion and ask, should I add a new branch to my Alternative Text Shrubbery? Why this topic? Alternative text attributes are the simplest accessibility recommendation to apply (Sydik, 2007), and a […]

Sigma Pods – Speculative Design Update

Reading Time: < 1 minute A year after our MSc UX Speculative Design project submission and Timekettle is emerging with many of the features we speculated on for the project. It’s exciting to learn of the features they have prioritised and developed for their WT2 Edge in-ear translator. As we speculated, Timekettle bring conversational controls with a tap (if more […]

Emmet Emissary

Reading Time: 4 minutes Emmet didn’t come naturally to me. My favourite YouTube codey stars and Emmet emissaries use it and without viewing their keyboard strokes I was left eager and still confused.  What’s Emmet? I’ll let the Emmet website explain: “…most text editors out there allow you to store and re-use commonly used code chunks, called “snippets”. While […]

Is HTML better than Markdown? Yes

Reading Time: 4 minutes When we write web content in valid vanilla HTML, the Internet is a far more inclusive product. Only the skill of our writers could change that. In this article I argue to drop Markdown as your primary writing medium and write to, or into HTML. Comments are open 🙂  Digital Writing Digital writing is different […]

Dog Poo is Accessible Too

dog poop is accessible too

Reading Time: < 1 minute   Too many bells, whistles, and other dog poo added to UI and UX education, articles, and videos obsess visual delight while negating even basic accessible or inclusive design. When we employ ableist 3rd-party solutions, we must take responsibility for implementing them inclusively. Dog poo is accessible, too. We don’t want to wade through it. […]

A CMS-look-alike with AJAX

Reading Time: 3 minutes Why? Static wireframes are not prototypes. I expect to use this technique when demonstrating inclusive and accessible UX or UI design strategies. These include relative units, fluid responsiveness, and server responses that static wireframes or [insert ‘prototyping’ software of choice] click-through output can only fail to convey. Starting Out It’s been a while since I […]

MSc UX Design Graduation 2020

Reading Time: < 1 minute Darn Covid 19 in 2020. Our graduation is in absentee—or some such concept spoken in Latin to dress the situation up a bit. Here’s our segment on YouTube at 27 min and 27 seconds introduced by my supervisor, Dr Andrew Errity. You’ll spot me: one of only two names poor Andrew needed to name in […]

Inclusive Dialog Design?

Reading Time: 11 minutes ☰ Navigate this post: Introduction My Initial Thinking Adrian Replies The Missing Je Ne Sais Pas More Thinking Required Use Cases Solutions That Fail Summary Reference this Post Introduction I happened upon and was impressed by Adrian Roselli’s post, “Dialog Focus in Screen Readers”. His testing set me a line of thought current to my […]

‘Special Characters’ Accessibility and Usability

image sprite of special characters in a dark and a light theme

Reading Time: 12 minutes ☰ Navigate this post: Introduction The Problem Missed Opportunity Experiments Testing Solutions Solution when all else is impossible Summary Reference this post Introduction I’m concerned when we expect screen reader users to overcome our design and technology shortcomings. Why should they ‘work around’ barriers we create? When they learn a ‘workaround’ that becomes a global […]

Blueberry Muffins and Terrible People

blueberry-muffin stuffing

Reading Time: < 1 minute Hoorah for Monica Dinculescu (‘Meownica‘) of Google calling out developers who don’t “bake-in” accessibility to their apps like blueberries in a muffin recipe: “If you don’t want to make accessible apps, then you are a terrible person and you shouldn’t be making apps for anybody. You should be doing something else.” Dinculescu (2016) The following […]

Shaking the Alt Decision Tree

woman's eyes looking up into the light

Reading Time: 9 minutes ☰ Navigate this post: Why must images be inclusive And not only accessible? The problem Why image a11y fails The rotten Alt Decision Tree Analysis Pruning the Alt Decision Tree Cutting out the technical Shaking the ‘Tree Asking what stays? My Alt Decision Shrub Tra-daa, the problem solved!? Reference this post References Why is alternative […]