Everyone has the right to access information whether they are normal or with some form of disability. The internet is available almost everywhere, and it allows people across nations and ages to interact and communicate. Of course, users have differences, from location to language to disabilities. But these should not stop them from getting connected digitally.
Accessibility can be added to web functionality through tools, special training, or additional software. For example, it might be inconvenient to access the web if a person has a disability. On the other hand, with technology (including artificial intelligence), there are several ways for people to explore the web.
Online obstacles faced by disabled people
The first website was published in 1990. Since then, most websites have been created for able individuals. Unfortunately, the earlier websites were not optimized for people with disabilities. However, tools available today, such as the accessibility overlay, can help them access most websites successfully.
Disabilities in various forms make it difficult for many individuals to navigate websites like ordinary people. Here are some of them.
Some disabled persons have cognitive disorders that affect the functions and information processing of the brain. Dyslexia, a learning disorder, is one example of a cognitive disorder. People with dyslexia have a short attention span and have difficulty retaining memories. Thus, their lack of concentration while using the web makes it difficult to complete tasks. One way to help them is to avoid web pages with long text blocks. For instance, it is better to break up the text with bullets or numbers. Pictures with captions also keep the web user interested and focused. Another helpful thing to do is provide a downloadable PDF copy of the content.
Speech sound disorder, apraxia of speech, and tachyphemia are just some of the speech impairments that can prevent disabled persons from fully accessing and enjoying websites. Although tech trends allow users to speak into their devices to make inquiries or give commands, their speech disorders can make it difficult for the app to understand them. Therefore, there should be more advanced methods for speech recognition.
Websites today are dynamic and include animation, audio, video, high-resolution images, bright and bold colors, and other elements. These are used to create visually appealing and engaging content. However, the motions and contrasting colors can make some people develop migraines, dizziness, and vomiting. Additionally, for epileptic persons, these elements can cause a seizure.
Many people today suffer from various visual conditions, affecting how they use the web. Most people wear glasses when they browse the web. Others have low vision, so they struggle to see the web content. Some people struggle to decipher words. So, web designers should consider writing codes that improve the display of text and other content. Likewise, they should make the website’s appearance consistent on different stationary and mobile devices.
There are more issues that people with disabilities face when browsing the internet. Web developers and designers must consider these problems when creating new sites. They can do this by using available tools to make web access easier for disabled users.