incrediBILL - 11:11 pm on Mar 24, 2013 (gmt 0)
but on the whole material published on a website is inherently far more accessible than the same material published in traditional print media.
I kind of expect difficulty with printed material but I don't expect it with websites which turn out to be worse more often than not as printed material tends to be contrasty by nature of the medium to be white with dark black letters which are easy for me to read and the devices the blind use as well.
With printed media vision impaired are using bright lights, magnifying glasses, material printed in Braille and audio books to solve those problems. My current favorite hack helping me cope in the real world is a magnifying glass app that uses the camera in the phone and allows me to zoom in until I can see what I need to see. As a matter of fact another hack I use is a flashlight app that turns on the camera LED flash so I can read menus in dimly lit restaurants.
Obviously I'm not totally blind (yet) but there are lots of ways to cope with the problem but poor font size and color choices by webmasters are simply inexcusable just because some designer thinks it looks cool and then a bunch of us have trouble reading it.
I've actually tried the text to speech reader stuff in the cell phones and on my computer and it's really not bad when someone does the app or webpage properly but if it's done wrong and sloppy it's quickly maddening and I either bail on the app/page or turn off audio and go back to magnifying software.
A big problem for me are app for the cell phone and tablet don't even bother checking the default font size you set for your system so everything looks great at the OS level but you load some reader and it's back to 8pt or 10pt with no way to zoom or enlarge, totally useless at that point. The default messaging on the phone, SMS, email, etc. is actually guilty of this if you can believe it which is inexcusably bad design and SQA.
For that reason I've been abandoning some apps and going back to their websites and telling it to give me the regular desktop view that I can zoom in as much as I wast because sadly many of the 'mobile' designed pages are ill conceived crap and worse to deal with than than panning and zooming the regular desktop view.
Sorry if I'm off on a rant here but it's a topic that's near and dear to me and is really hitting close to home and I quickly discovered that nobody is building anything right for people that need a wee bit bigger or bolder font except a handful of products which is pathetic, inexcusable and disheartening to say the least.
How hard is it to let the viewer choose a font size, pick up the system font size already set, or allow a page to be zoomed?
It's those little simple details that really make or break usability.
It's not hard at all and if I continue on I'm going to use words at this point that will insult and offend some people so I'll stop as I think I've made my point.