by Jason Snell
Andy Baio on designing for colorblindness
Like me, Andy Baio is colorblind. People don’t get how many design elements rely on color:
For some people, colorblindness is a serious liability that closes doors on career dreams. It’s hard to become a pilot, train conductor, or pathologist if you can’t differentiate colors in critical instruments, signals, or tissue samples. For others, it seriously impacts their day-to-day ability to do their jobs, like surveyors spotting flags, doctors looking at skin conditions, or electricians looking for colored wires.
But for me, it’s just a lifelong series of unnecessarily confusing interactions, demonstrating that the world wasn’t designed for people like me.
Accessibility comes in lots of forms. I have flabbergasted people by explaining that the little charging light that turns from amber to green when a device is completely charged is utterly indecipherable to me. And my colorblindness is apparently far less severe than Andy’s.
If you are a web designer or app designer, you should always keep colorblind people in mind.