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Access for all: Spotlight on accessibility at WebExpo

The topic of accessibility has been part of the WebExpo conference program since its very beginning – the first talk on accessibility was given in 2009 and was dedicated to the then hot news – the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0.

Since then, the topic of accessibility has appeared regularly in the conference program, and participants have been able to learn about it both through talks and workshops.

Accessibility is no longer a niche topic but a crucial aspect of product development. This year’s WebExpo conference in Prague takes accessibility to a new level and offers the largest representation of this topic in the conference programme to date.

Exploring accessibility through expert insights

Firstly, accessibility will be highlighted by several speakers at the conference. What can you look forward to?

Inclusive design patterns

Vitaly Friedman, the creative lead at Smashing Magazine, will kick off with a compelling discussion on the nuanced aspects of inclusive design beyond the basics like colour contrast and font sizes. Addressing the needs of young children, older adults, and users with dyslexia or colour blindness, Vitaly will provide an expansive view of accessibility. He will emphasize the importance of early design decisions in avoiding costly corrections later and share a plethora of real-life examples and best practices that can be applied to various projects.

Vitaly will also run a full-day Premium Workshop on May 31, where you’ll dive together into realistic and actionable methods to make complex systems easy to use. Secure your spot and learn seamless filtering, multi-step forms, data visualisation and much more!

The design system’s role in accessibility

From New Zealand, design systems consultant Geri Reid will highlight the limitations of relying solely on design systems for organisational accessibility. Through her talk, Geri will stress the necessity of cultivating a culture that champions accessibility beyond mere compliance. She will provide a roadmap from building accessible components in design systems to fostering a community of accessibility allies within organisations.

Expectations vs. reality in creating accessible websites

Ondřej Pohl, the Accessibility Director at ACTUM Digital, will present a candid look into the creation of an accessible website for a major scientific institute. He will detail the common pitfalls expected during design, development, and content creation stages. His talk will offer a realistic perspective on the challenges of coordinating accessibility efforts across different teams and companies.

Overcoming barriers in inclusive design

User experience researcher Tereza Kosnarová will share insights from her extensive research on human behaviour and inclusive design. She will outline a straightforward roadmap to inclusive design, emphasizing the importance of involving diverse voices and addressing sensitive topics effectively. Tereza’s approach to human-centred design will showcase how research can lead to more accessible and resonant products.

An inclusive revolution in city wayfinding

Lastly, Dominika Potužáková and Ondřej Raul will demonstrate how inclusive design principles can reshape urban wayfinding systems. Their project, focused on Prague’s public spaces, will underscore the significance of incorporating diverse user perspectives in the design process, ensuring that navigation systems cater to everyone’s needs, from locals to tourists, across various physical and socio-cultural spectrums.

Tip – you can read interviews with some of the speakers on the Poslepu.cz blog during the next month.

May accessibility cause discomfort?

Join Riki Fridrich and Radek Pavlíček for a special edition of the Discomfort Zone where we dive into the often overlooked challenges of accessibility. Whether it’s the intricacies of designing inclusive products, the hurdles of implementing new accessibility standards, or the personal experiences of navigating a world that’s not built for all, we’re opening up the floor to the real, tough conversations.

This is your chance to share your experiences, learn from peers, and ask the hard questions about accessibility that often go unasked. How do we handle the discomfort of recognising our own biases? What do we do when good intentions fall short? How can we contribute to building a more accessible world?

As you can see, this year’s WebExpo will be packed with accessibility. Thus, don’t hesitate to grab your ticket and hope to see you there!

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