Digital design has always been a combination of technical and artistic skills. Around the Internet, we can see beautiful examples of the interaction of technology and visually appealing windows to information. As part of the Internet, digital design has tribe for excellence, which usually means an inherent visual appeal and an organic user interaction. UX and UI design work to accomplish that, but more often than not, designers have forgotten another aspect of user interaction – accessibility.
Accessibility as part of web design standard was first heard of in 1999 at the Web Accessibility Initiative, part of the World Wide Web Consortium and it was updated in 2008 with the version 2.0. Despite this, the industry always regards accessibility as an extra to web design.
The importance of accessibility is sometimes left aside; without it, impaired people would struggle to get access to important information on the Internet. More and more we see how effective and reliable online tools and information can be for our society. Accessibility creates an environment where everyone is truly welcome and is able to take advantage of what the Internet has to offer. Moreover, accessibility should not be only focused on supporting the public, but it can also be a powerful tool to increase the demand of businesses online, where content becomes more accessible to more people.
When asked about accessibility as an integral part of any design, Shunsuke Hayashi, an accomplished and up and coming digital designer, a graduate of the Pratt Institute in New York, said: “People often ask me where does accessibility and design meet? Should we take on one or the other? My answer is take on accessibility to make your design even better”. Hayashi’s work and ideas envision accessibility as an integral part of digital design, “It is not only out of pure social responsibility that designers should work with accessibility in their mind, but also accessibility as an unused asset in the industry”.
Hayashi incorporates this thought on his designs, not only as a personal goal, but also as a way to encourage others in the industry to understand the real importance of accessibility. He represents the side of the design industry trying to change the perception of accessibility with their work.
The digital industry has enabled the world to access content and information as never before, it will certainly grow in the future and we as society, will increasingly rely on this content and information If accessibility has led us to reform on architecture, physical design and other areas, why has something as important and digital design then been left aside?
– The Global Panorama