Category: Usability

Leveling the Playing Field: We’re all Differently Abled

March 25, 2019

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Topics: Accessibility, Usability.

Originally published March 25th, 2009 at; recovered from the Internet Archive. Accessibility and web accessibility are often highlighted as issues for people with disabilities. This is no surprise, all things considered, given the common definition of accessibility. “Disability” is, however, an almost meaninglessly broad term. Many of those who could be considered disabled would not choose to self-identify as disabled. “Disability” is a label, and like any label, the members of the labeled group are diverse and may exhibit […]

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The myth of the keyboard-only user

March 30, 2016


Topics: Accessibility, Usability.

An article I wrote on keyboard accessibility was published at Practical eCommerce magazine this morning. The topic is keyboard accessibility – what constitutes keyboard accessibility and how crucial it is for users who are blind, low-vision, or have mobility impairments. Which brings to mind the question: is there really such a thing as a fully keyboard-dependent user? This is a question that gets asked in accessibility communities occasionally. Most uses who are unable to use a standard mouse can still […]

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Contemplating “read more” links

July 17, 2014


Topics: Accessibility, Usability, WordPress.

Web accessibility guidelines stipulate that links need to provide context for meaning; but they also stipulate that link text needs to be unique when it leads to a new resource. Under Success Criterion 2.4.4, a read more link after an excerpt of the post would be meaningful, because the context provides information about what the link does. But when generating a list of links, “read more” links produce a long series of links with the same text and different destinations, […]

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Make those links clickable, please!

December 4, 2010


Topics: Usability.

Some time ago, I ran across an interesting post on Clients from Hell: Website user who couldn’t find an article emailed our help desk. We sent him the link to the content he couldn’t find. Client: “Please change the letters in your email to blue, so I can click the link.” Clients from Hell While this was intended to ridicule a misunderstanding — that the client couldn’t click the link unless the letters were blue — it does stand to […]

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Usability testing isn’t for you? Really?

October 18, 2010


Topics: Usability.

Whenever somebody tells me that they really don’t see the point in doing usability testing on their web site, I can’t help myself from asking why. Let’s be honest here — what’s a really good reason for skipping usability testing? The first thing that comes to my mind, of course, is because you’ve just finished a major usability review. I can understand wanting to give it a skip if you’ve just gone through the usability testing process! But, surprisingly, that’s […]

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