Category Archives: Accessibility

Translating Agile Testing Condensed the unconventialway – part 1

Finding the right words has some challenges. I added assistive technology for extra flavour. Have a nice meal.

Obligatory introduction

In the years after the publication, different translations were released. I fancied about translating the book Agile Testing Condensed by Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory. Then Yves Hanoulle asked for native Dutch speakers for help. I volunteered.

Being able to speak different languages has some advantages.

Choosing VoiceOver

My favourite tool for writing is my smartphone. I used an iPhone and it has some great benefits for blind and visual impaired users. VoicOver is a screen reader. This tool can read text shown on the screen aloud.

If I could put the text to be translated in a file, then I could listen to it. After changing English words to Dutch words, I would be able to listen to the translated text.

Note to my fellow Dutch citizens: VoiceOver is free. It is a standard feature of the iPhone.

Choosing Notes and Dictate

Now I needed a text editor for my translation on the iPhone. My obvious choice was Notes, which had enough functionality. I added the text to be translated into a file which is called a note. I added another note for the Dutch text.

Note to my fellow Dutch citizens: the app Notes is free. It is a standard app on the iPhone.

Then I looked for a fast way to enter the text. There was a Dictate button left from the Space button on the keyboard. Another useful feature for blind and visual impaired users.

Note to my fellow Dutch citizens: Dictate is free. It is a standard feature of the iPhone.

Using Notes, VoiceOver, and Dictate

The first translation attempt was started with opening the English note. I listened to the first sentence, Then I opened the Dutch note and pressed the Dictate button. With due care. I said the Dutch words aloud. I stopped the dictation and saw something strange: there were English words instead of Dutch words.

These are not the words which I was looking for.

What had happened? I read the words and tried to figure out some weird theory. I took a small pause. Let me first take a look at the facts. Phonetically, the English words cane close to the Dutch words.

Why were English words used instead of Dutch words? VoiceOver had no problems with reading aloud the English text. Dictate still used English as a standard language. I had  set the system language to English, because I read a lot of English on my iPhone.

 Luckily, I could change the language using the Rotor. It would cost me some twists and swipes on the screen.

Finding the right sequence

Then I noticed that only one Note can be opened at any time. So, I needed to open and close note files on very frequent rate. This led to the following set of actions.

  • Open the English file, set the System
    Language to English and go to the sentence to be translated.
    Use VoiceOver to speak the sentence aloud.
    Close the English file.
  • Open the Dutch file, set the System
    Language to Dutch and go to the end of the file.
    Use Dictate to enter the text.
    Close the Dutch file.
  • Rinse and Repeat.

That is a lot of switching of languages and files. Period.

Being able to speak different languages has some disadvantages.

To be continued.

Things which were not on my 2022 bingo card

  • In the first half of this year, I wrote a serie of blog posts about accessibility. Is it possible to integrate it into Agile development? I did a thought experiment with Planning Poker.
  • There is a lot of talk about using multiple ways to identify yourself. For certain services is the use of multi factor authentication needed to prevent problems. It is not about technology, but about process.
  • In the spring I went with my family to an in person juggling convention. My kids enjoyed the juggling. Not bad for a dad for showing instead of teaching.
  • After a lot of performances, I did some acts for blind and visually impaired people. Body language and sizes are difficult to show to this audience. I really put a lot of effort to tell how things look like. How big is a duck, if I cannot pass a bird around?
  • As a free time juggler, I could not resist to give some lessons about juggling to blind and visually impaired people. This took me some effort to adjust it to their capabilities. I focused on feeling.For the interested people: I did contact juggling with balls, plate handling, and tricks with rings, pois, or devilstick.
  • I also gave some workshops in balloon modelling to blind and visually impaired people.For me, balloon modelling is twisting and folding balloons into a nice object. The first time I showed a white dog above a white table. This was a bad contrast for some visually impaired attendees.
  • I learned braille.
  • In September I got the “Gives back” badge on the Club of Ministry of Testing. I gave more than 100 likes to other posts and got more than 100 likes on my posts. At the moment of blogging, I am one of the 32 people who got this badge.
  • This year I took piano lessons in piano. The focus was on improvisation.
  • In 2016 I wrote a blog post about a privacy issue on LinkedIn. 6 years later I discovered that this problem was solved.
  • The hardest lesson I learned was to give people the help they asked for. In the past, I gave too much information.Of course, there is a chance that these 2 facts are unrelated.
  • The last months, I started to micro blog again. Once in a few days I extended a blog post with a few lines. This keeps me blogging.
  • At the end of the year, I published a blog post about speaking on tech conferences. Looking at my own experiences, I noticed some specific patterns. 
  • A day before Christmas, the Dutch version of “Condensed Agile Testing” by Lias Crispin and Janet Gregory became available. I translated 1 chapter. I am the Chinese looking guy, who made one of the contributions or bijdragen in Dutch.

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.