Last month, I had the opportunity to travel to Chicago and share with two groups — the  Chicago Digital Accessibility and Inclusive Design (@A11YChi) along with the Chicago Design & User Research Meetup.  Critical Mass (@criticalmass) hosted the event at their downtown offices on North Michigan Avenue and Genesis Solutions was one of the key sponsors. It was a great opportunity to share ideas with both user experience and accessibility professionals.

photo of accessibility meeting

The topic I spoke on is one that I have had a good deal of experience with over the past few years — where does accessibility and user experience align? Often times, these concerns can be seen as opposing one another, but it doesn’t need to be that way.  I shared stories from recent project work where we needed to not only evaluate digital channels for accessibility, but also how we can vett the improved interface with People with Disabilities using their own hardware and software.

second photo of accessibility meeting

The event was well attended by member of both groups.  We had a lot of questions afterwards and some great dialogue afterwards.   It was good to see how enthusiastic the attendees were about improving both the user experience and accessibility of the digital work they are involved with.

A special thanks to the event hosts Dennis Deacon (@deaconspray), Seth Kane (@onesixtieth) and Mike Oren (@mikeoren).