Designing for visually impaired developers

Epifani, Andrea, Boden, Marie, Meinicke, Larissa, Matthews, Ben and Viller, Stephen (2015). Designing for visually impaired developers. In: Vesna Popovic, Alethea Blackler, Ding-Bang Luh, Nithikul Nimkulrat, Ben Kraal and Yukari Nagai, IASDR 2015 Interplay: Proceedings. World Conference of the International Association of Design Research, Brisbane, Australia, (609-622). 2-5 November 2015.

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Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads
Author Epifani, Andrea
Boden, Marie
Meinicke, Larissa
Matthews, Ben
Viller, Stephen
Title of paper Designing for visually impaired developers
Conference name World Conference of the International Association of Design Research
Conference location Brisbane, Australia
Conference dates 2-5 November 2015
Proceedings title IASDR 2015 Interplay: Proceedings
Publisher The International Association of Societies of Design Research
Publication Year 2015
Sub-type Fully published paper
Open Access Status Not Open Access
ISBN 9780646943183
Editor Vesna Popovic
Alethea Blackler
Ding-Bang Luh
Nithikul Nimkulrat
Ben Kraal
Yukari Nagai
Start page 609
End page 622
Total pages 14
Language eng
Abstract/Summary This paper a case study of the interaction design of software development tools for visually impaired students and professionals. We have designed and evaluated an interface that provides visually impaired developers a richer experience by introducing a combination of haptic and auditory feedback on a single platform. In addition to this, we have also looked at how utilizing existing technologies might allow visually impaired developers to collaborate with their sighted colleagues and peers. By studying existing research literature, interviewing visually impaired programmers and professional disability staff, we have identified common problems with existing software development solutions and their users. We implemented the interface in the form of a paper-based prototype, which we evaluated with visually impaired users who have experience with software development interfaces. The users’ evaluation indicated that further work in this space might change how developers with visual impairments can learn how to code and improve programming tasks conducted in collaboration with their sighted colleagues. From this study, we formulate five recommendations for the design of support for visually impaired users of programming environments: combine haptic and audible feedback, shorten and diversify sound feedback, create scalable interfaces, build on existing technologies and integrate with common Integrated Development Environments.
Keyword Design for visual impairment
Interaction design
Tactile interfaces
Q-Index Code E1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online at

Document type: Conference Paper
Sub-type: Fully published paper
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering Publications
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Created: Wed, 03 Feb 2016, 00:20:38 EST by Larissa Meinicke on behalf of School of Information Technol and Elec Engineering