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  1. #1
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    Should I make the effort to make this site accessible?

    I recently created a site in which users can play sudoku puzzles from within their browser, or can print them off and play the game the old fashioned way with paper and pencil. For those of you that don't know what Sudoku is, sudoku puzzles are the 9x9 grid number games that you've probably seen in your newpapers within the last few years.

    My question is this: in a game that so seemingly relies on one's visual faculties, what how much time should I put into making the site accessible to the visually impared? Certainly color-blindness is an issue that I intend to look at... but what about the blind? Is a game like this even playable to the blind? I'd love to hear your opinions on the matter : )

    If you would like to take a look, the site in question is http://www.sudokumadness.net/

  2. #2
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    Mittineague's Avatar
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    Accessibility

    There are different types and degrees of blindness. As long as someone can modify the text size and/or over-ride your CSS styles, that's a start. I myself might be considered somewhat "vision impaired". I need eye glasses, surf at 800x600 res, and have text size at "largest". If a site doesn't let me "increase" text size I'm gone.

  3. #3
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    Mittineague, so for your particular situation, do find it sufficient for the designer to test his pages under a variety of browsers, at many resolutions (and text sizes)?

    Here's another one for you : ) I'm one of many unoriginal designers that has opted to use the typical 760 pixel-wide column layout for just about everything that he does. At a text size that is readable to the majority of people--say, 10 point--this size column has been found to be optimal. But when you resize text on a site that limits it's content to a static width column, how do you feel about it? Is it still legible and convenient to read, or does it break?

  4. #4
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    CSS and accessability

    When I use Firefox, I am able to "increase" the text. With IE I can not. I believe this is because the font sizes are absolute rather than relative. ie. ##px, ##em, ##pt, instread of "smaller", ##%. I did not see any inline CSS, so I believe that user's that have their own CSS style can over-ride the site's CSS. I think this is where the validation warnings come in. If a user has a style sheet that makes all backgrounds white and they do not specify a dark font color, the site's white text will be cloaked. But I'm not sure exactly how this works.
    The site does have some over-lap issues. The "created by" image hides the "S" of the header image (which should be at the top, no?). In Opera, when the text size is increased, there is some over-lap of the left column text going into the right column, which IMHO is a minor problem, and not really what I would call "broken". If this is more of a concern to you, I think the CSS forum has a lot of threads dealing with "fluid" layout that may give you some tips.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Author silver trophybronze trophy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mittineague
    I believe this is because the font sizes are absolute rather than relative. ie. ##px, ##em, ##pt, instread of "smaller", ##%.
    em is a relative unit (it's relative to the parent element's font size and, ultimately, to the browser's base font size).

    Some will claim that px is also a relative unit. It is, but not in the sense that accessibility guidelines intend. (Pixels are relative to the screen size and resolution.)
    Birnam wood is come to Dunsinane

  6. #6
    SitePoint Evangelist tetsuo shima's Avatar
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    Dimensions in '%' are relative to the dimension of the containing element when dimensions in 'em' are relative to the element's font size. That makes the em measure unit a very accessible unit for sizing elements other than fonts.

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  7. #7
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    So when trying to create accessible text, what font measure do you recommend? Do you set the style of the body to a relative font size like "x-small", then use percentages or ems to modify everything else?

    I remember reading a great article on this on alistapart about a year ago, but I can't find the article for the life of me. I think it was lost in their last overhaul....

    Scratch that... I just found it. If anyone is interested, here is the A List Apart article I was looking for: http://www.alistapart.com/stories/sizematters/


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