Category Archives: Accessibility

Accessibility Poker – This is my view

Accessibility Poker – This is my view.

This is a friendly reminder, that all stories with George are fiction.

The story so far

By assigning Accessibility Points to tickets with obstacles for blind people, it is easier to prioritise work. A user story cannot contain more than 1 action with more than 5 Accessibility Points. This way users can use the web site in an accessible way. Also, the sum of Accessibility Points for a single task should be limited.

Some problem

“Hi George.”
“Hi Polly.
How are things going?”
“During the A/B testing something noticeable happened: sales dropped enormously.”
“What happened, Polly?“
“They changed something to improve accessibility, George.

There was a new page and they thought that they did something pretty smart. Before, it had only a picture and some texts and they replaced it by a movie with a sound track and captions.

If someone was blind, then she or he could hear the movie. Deaf people could read the captions in the movie. We thought that we did a decent job but the A/B testing proved otherwise. We cannot find a solution. George. How do I solve this problem?”

“Polly, your team thought that people were either blind or deaf. If someone is both blind and deaf, what would be the use of sound and captions of the movie?“
“They cannot hear the movie and they cannot see the movie, so they don’t get any information. George. That is really insightful.”

Some thing

“There is something different.
In May sales also dropped. We did the promotion for haptic gloves. Something went wrong though. The sales went up, after the promotion article on the homepage disappeared.“

“Could you tell me more about this article, Polly?“
“Of course, George. It was for a new haptic glove for the fashion industry. It also included a movie.”
“Can you still play this movie, Polly?”
“Sure, that is easy.”
“Let’s do a simple experiment: you play the movie without showing it to me. At the same time, you tell what is being shown for 10 seconds.”

“George, I found the movie. Let me start:
A user with haptic glove … fabric … screen … appreciation …. Order… happy.
That were 10 tough seconds. It was too hard to tell what happened on the screen. ”

“What would usera with a visual impairment experience?”
“I think that they have a lot of problems to recognise the pictures, George.”
“Indeed, for me this story would be really difficult to follow.”

“You said: “me”.”
“I mean a user with a visual impairment.”
“George, you have a visual impairment. That’s why you got a headache, when I was quickly browsing a website a few calls ago.”
“You are smart, Polly.”
“Your secret is safe with me, George.”
“Thank you, Polly.”

Some personas

“George, something with the Accessibility Points will go wrong.”
“What do you mean?”
“At the moment we have personas for a blind person and a deaf person. Now we need personas for a blind and deaf person and a person with a visual impairment.”
“You know, that there are different visual impairments, Polly?”
“then we need to use more personas. This is my view.

I do not like to add multiple numbers of Accessibility Points to a ticket. It is too much administration.”
“What is the minimal number of Accessibility Points you need?”
“At least 1.”
“If there are 7 numbers of Accessibility Points for different personas. Which one would you take?”
“I would take the highest. This sounds lean to me.”

Some offer

 “It’s almost 9 o’clock. This was our last call. So, it’s time to say goodbye.”
“There is no other meeting lined up for me, Polly.”
“In that case I have a special offer for you George. You can work for our company full time get all usual benefits like health insurance stock options. A lot of colleagues are thrilled to work with you.”

“Polly, half hour a day is more than enough work for me.”
“George, this is hard to sell to management though.“
“I’m sorry, Polly.”

“Thank you for all the support. My team and I really appreciated it. Take care. Goodbye, George.
“Good luck. Goodbye, Polly.”

Some disappointment

“Good morning, Polly.”
“Good morning, John.”
“Did George take our offer?”
“I’m afraid not.”
“Did we not show that we have the right mentality and use technology in the right way?”
“It was something different.”

The end.

Accessibility Poker – Watch your step

This is a friendly reminder, that all stories with George are fiction.

The story so far

By assigning Accessibility Points to tickets with obstacles for blind people, it is easier to prioritise work. A user story cannot contain more than 1 action with more than 5 Accessibility Points. This way users can use the web site in an accessible way.

Supplier chain

“Hi George.”
“Hi Polly.”

“That is strange. You did not wave back, George.”
“I blocked your camera. The last time I got too many impressions, when you browsed a web site.”
“If I promise not to share my screen, are you willing to look at me?”
“That is fine.”

“Hi Polly.”
“Hi George, It is nice, if people wave back.”

“Polly, how are things going?”
“Since our last call my team made a list of all the suppliers of components for our web site. There were a lot. I never thought that there would be that many. Any way, we focused on accessibility testing on these components.

Most of them were accessible or they could be made accessible in an easy way. But we had some troubles with the cookie banner.”
“How did you solve this, Polly?”

“We called the customer service for help. It was the first time that they heard of this problem. The customer service agent requested us to tell about the problems. We had about 12 problems.”

Supplier strain

“The same day an account manager called me for some clarification. So I showed some bug reports. He was genuinely shocked and wanted to help us.”
“This sound good to me.”

“Then the talk changed. He noticed the Accessibility Points of the bug reports.
So I told him that these points represented the amount of energy used by disabled people. Furthermore actions with more than 3 Accessibility Points should be avoided. Then he started to talk about velocity.”

“Is this supplier agile?”
“Maybe. So I told him that it would be great, if his company would deliver the solutions within a few weeks. According to him velocity was not about the speed of solving the tickets, but about the velocity of the user.”

“Was he expecting that the user would solve his problems?”
“I was having the same thoughts and asked him for a specific example.”
“He talked about the state of the toggle button, which could not be detected by a screen reader. If this was possible, then the number of Accessibility Points would drop to 1. This way a blind user would go faster. The velocity would be higher.”

“I told him that I could follow his explanation, but it was confusing to use the word velocity for a user.”

Supplier drain

“The first demo went right. It was simple to navigate with a screen reader while the screen was turned off. The account manager started again over velocity, which lead to a lot of confusion.
Soon another demo was announced. This time a blind person would use the improved cookie banner.

This demo was cancelled at the last minute. The programmers still needed to do some tweaking. In the meantime we already used a cookie banner from another provider. After a few weeks of promises and delayed demos we definitely switched from supplier.”

Supplier vain

“It looks like everything is solved, Polly.
What kind of help do you need from me?”

“The cookie banner problem is solved. There is something different.
People in my company started to use velocity with relation to Accessibility Points.
I did a bit of research. There is something wrong with the word velocity. I even found this tweet of Ron Jeffries about velocity. I put it in the chat.”

“Polly, can you tell me more about the first demo?”
“The screens were quite compact. It only contained a short understandable explanation and a single question. The tester in our team could easily navigate these screens using the screen reader.”

“Polly, I have another story to explain this to you.”
“I am all ears, George.”

“During one of our calls you told me that your husband and you share running as a hobby.
Now imagine that you are trained well enough to run a whole marathon. Then there is an announcement in the newspaper that there is a marathon in your neighbourhood. You both buy tickets.

On the day of the race both of you want to use the car, but it does not start. So, you put on your running gear and walk to the bus stop nearby. You missed the bus by minutes. This is no problem, because a train will be leaving soon. So, you run to the railway station.

Again you have bad luck and miss the train. So, you decide to run to the start of the marathon. After one and half hour of running you arrive.”

Supplier stain

“George, I would not run the marathon.”
“You have trained well and you have bought tickets.”
“It is just too long.”
“You made it to the start of the run.”

“Yes, I made it. The velocity was good. The number of steps to the start and the number of steps of the marathon are too many. It will cost me too much energy.”

“How would you summarize it?”
“Watch your step.”
“This can still be confusing with velocity, Polly”
“Maybe I should say: watch the total number of steps.”

“Let me do a search on Twitter, Polly.
In the chat I put a link to a tweet of Ron Jeffries that story points should be added.”

“George, I do not understand, what you mean with the running story.”
“You told me about the small screens in the first demo. What do you think what happened with the biggest screen?”
“It had about 30 toggle buttons. I would expect a lot of small screens. I would stop after 20 screens. This is really unpleasant.

Wait. You compare a screen with a step.
This could be a good explanation for the delayed cookie banner demos. Even a person without sight problems would leave the website in frustration.
Thank you for the insight.”

“Polly, it’s 9. I have to go to the next meeting.
Goodbye Polly.”
“Goodbye George.”

Supplier pain

“Hi Polly.”
“Hi John,”
“Did you discover what might have gone wrong with the cookie banner supplier? Did he use the wrong tools?”
“It was something different.”

To be continued.

Accessibility Poker – We Checked Our Design

This is a friendly reminder, that all stories with George are fiction.

The story so far

By assigning Accesibility Points to tickets with obstacles for blind people, it is easier to prioritise work. A user story cannot contain actions with more than 5 Acccessibility Points, so that the users can use the web site in an accessible way.

The progress so far

“Hi George.”
“Hi Polly. How are things going?”
“The sales are going up again. The web team decided to test for accessibility in earlier phase. The code is analysed, before it will be used. This was automated and it saves us a lot of time.”

“That sounds great, Polly. You are doing good stuff.”
“My team is doing good stuff, George.
There is something different.”

The numbers so far

“The percentage of people leaving the web site from the home page is still higher than the same percentage before blind people visited our web site. We checked our design and we assume that people have a bad experience.”

“Where did you get these numbers from?”
“We use analytics on our web site. These numbers are very useful for our marketing team. This way we can tell which products are interesting for our visitors.”

“You collect a lot of data. Did you ask for permission?”
“Yes, we use a cookie banner.In order to save time and energy,  we bought one.”
“Did you test this cookie banner on accessibility?”

“This is really something new. Do you have any articles or blog posts to share?”
“I put a link to a blog post about cookie banners in the chat.”

“Let me open that one.
The title does not sound right.
How did we miss this, George?”
“Research is an underrated skill in testing, Polly.

Your company is using software from suppliers for your web site. Your automatic checks will not uncover all the accessibility pro­blems in their code.”

“We should do more research.”
“How do you feel about it?”
“I feel bad.”

“What did you do a few minutes ago?”
“I was gathering information, so we could decide about the next steps. Information like articles and blog posts would be really useful.”
“How would you describe this in 1 word?”
“Research.”

“In our first call you told me, that your team had found the WCAG guidelines. These are very useful for accessibility of your web site.”
“How would you dall that?”
“Research.”
“How do you feel now?”
“Much better.”

“George, I have a question for you.
If this call was turned into a blog post and you would read it, how would you call it?”
“Research.
You beat me in my own game.”

“George, what could go wrong, if we do not pay attention to the suppliers?”

The pain so far

“Polly, do you know someone with a diet?”
“I have a friend who has a gluten free diet.”
“What would you do while cooking for this friend?”
“I definitely would check the ingredients for the meal. I would also use clean cooking utentils. Before cooking I would clean the kitchen table. Just to be sure.”

“If you would have too little time to make a dish, would you use a precooked dish from the shop?”
“No, of course not. I would carefully read which ingredients were used for this dish. Gluten should not be included. In case of doubt I would check a website containing a list of gluten free products.”

“What would happen with your friend, if you would use ingredients with gluten?”
“My friend would have at least 1 bad day. Wait.
In our case the shop is my supplier and I have to check its’ products.

But what would happen, if a web site is not accessible, George?”
“After an action with 13 or more Accessibility Points, a blind user would have too little energy. This could lead to headache, frustation or anger.”

The dependencies so far

“This does not feel right to me.
Let me share my screen, George.
This is the web site of my company. It looks fine to me.”

“Polly, there is a text balloon in the lower right corner. This would probably open a chat window with one of your sales people.”
“You described it well.”
“It looks a bit different. There might be a chance, that you bought this software from a supplier.”

“So this chat window might have not been checked on accessibility?”
“This is quite possible.

I also notice a strange button at the bottom of the page. The shape is different from the other buttons.”
“Let me click on that one, George. That is strange: some dialog pops up.
I close this dialog.

Wait. Let me scroll down. There are similar buttons over here.
Do you see this picture over here? It is on a button.
Does it have an alternative text? I wonder.

This is strange. Let me look at another page.
This text over here. Is this picture or a normal text?
And over here … I see another thing.
It is ..”

The exploration so far

“Polly, you are too fast for an old man like me.”
“O, I did not intend to bother you. I stop sharing my screen.”
“Thank you, Polly.”

“You look bad, George. Do you feel right?”
“I have to go, Polly. I will be fine. Bye.”
“Wait. Where are you going?”

The worries so far

“Hi Polly.”
“Hi John.”
“Polly, you look concerned.
Do you think that we can keep the visitors on our web site?”
“It is possible. George gave me some good clues.
There is something different.”

To be continued.