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Accessibility and Usability Forum

Color Blind People
You should ensure usability.

 5:11 am on Aug 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Thought I would take a chance here and left a small bit of information about a few clients of mine that are color blind. I work as a sub contractor for several national companies that use my services in a pinch, 99% of which are non web related.

I've been finding lately that about 5% of the end users of a location are color blind! I've done work with retrofitting end user workstations on client/server apps that do not allow for color adjustments eventually patching these legacy apps through contracts granted to me.

In talking with these folks. They tell me that it's amazing how many websites that are obviously fortune 100 companies are NOT color blind friendly and, are barely readable if at all.

There are many forms of color blindness. Most aren't very severe but many people can only see shades of gray with twinges of 'orange' or beige.

You may have noticed that many 'mac' themes have a white background and a light gray text. These users find it offensive and hard to read. However, most of the time it's the colors around the categories that limit them to being able to navigate a site properly.

Many of these end users have stated they simply look for a SITE MAP and click on it, as it is usually not fancy and provides the links needed to navigate the site properly.

Upon inspection of my latest site creation, I noticed some issues during two of the color blind tests and did some very minor changes to make my links readable.

I know it doesn't mean much, but simply working on this for some of the end users goes miles to say the least.

Yes I realize they can adjust their personal workstations etc, but many are not on their personal workstation or, do not know how (most of them are like this).

If for any reason, you should G:colorblind website filter and pick the first site you see there (not sure if we are allowed to post links on this topic so this should be safe)
Disclaimer: this is not my website, nor do I have ANY affiliation with this. I'm just trying to lend a hand in a situation that affects more than we think.
If for any reason, it's interesting to see what your website looks like to someone that is color blind at different levels. :)



 10:18 am on Aug 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

I don't think there's a problem with indicating the two big testing sites:

Wickline Color Blind Filter [colorfilter.wickline.org]

Vischeck [vischeck.com]

Wickline is probably better for testing your online site, and Vischeck is probably better for doing things like testing screenshots, as you can upload files. I use it for testing behind passwords.


 10:32 pm on Aug 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

If you make sure you have good contrast from light to dark will the site work for most color blind visitors?


 11:57 am on Aug 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

If you make sure you have good contrast from light to dark will the site work for most color blind visitors?

Basically, yes. However, it is possible to select a good color palette for colorblind people [colorlab.wickline.org].

[edited by: cmarshall at 12:45 pm (utc) on Aug. 24, 2007]


 12:34 pm on Aug 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

I set up a test site years ago for this. I did all the research and found the three most common forms of color blindness. From that, I was able to choose three color combinations to appeal to all three.

I don't think you can effectively take your main site and appeal to the color blind majority, there would be too many "visual sacrifices" in the design. Instead, I chose to use a stylesheet switcher which allows the user to quickly change between the three palettes which are...


Stylesheet switchers are an excellent way to serve all sorts of different versions of the site with one click. ;)

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