Accessible Computers from the Box
The paper briefly discusses the design of computers to allow their use by the 20% of the American population who have reduced abilities in such areas as manipulation, vision, hearing, and cognition. The role of manufacturers of standard computers in increasing computer accessibility is one of providing computers that can be used by an increasing number of individuals as well as providing the special "hooks" that special rehabilitation developers need in order to create and connect special adaptations for individuals with more severe handicaps. Specific problem areas and suggested solutions are offered for persons with movement disabilities, visual impairments, hearing impairments, and cognitive impairments. Mechanisms for making computers more accessible are grouped into five types in two categories: first, features to allow access and use of public or shared computers and second, features to facilitate use of personally owned or controlled computers. Tables provide a listing of software, operating system, and hardware modifications to improve input accessibility, output/display accessibility, and controls, media and documentation accessibility, and personal workstation modification facilitation. Modifications are listed in terms of the problem, examples, design recommendations, and design examples. (DB)
Vanderheiden, G.C. Accessible Computers from the Box.