February 9, 2024 at 4:11 pm #1852Luke ChildParticipant
My name is Luke (he/him pronouns). I’m a white male with a bushy beard and an eclectic fashion sense. I am also a sighted person.
I’m also a second year PhD student over at the University of the West of England. My research is on the affordances of sonic interaction in designing accessible navigation and narrative experiences in virtual video game environments. Truth be told though, I’m a musician at heart, I make lots of weird and wonderful combinations of time and harmony that sounds like something between hyperpop, punk and metal.
I don’t have lots of personal experiences with blindness in my own life, so I’d like to develop my understanding and awareness of blind and partially sighted creatives and their works and to listen to some awesome new music and projects in the process.
Hope you’re well!
February 9, 2024 at 5:07 pm #1855Steve MatzuraParticipant
Regarding not having any experience of blindness in your life, allow me to respectfully recommend the following, especially if you’re into game development and want visually impaired players of said game: GO to your nearest Boots Chemist and drop a pound or two on a set of sleep shades. Then, after you finish a development stage or project and want to find out what the user experience is for those without usable sight, strap those bad boys on and take your app for a spin. In other words, immerse yourself in our world, even if only for minutes at a time. We have a favorite sales and demonstration person who works for a certain company here in the states that writes adaptive software for Windows computers, and he decided the only way to learn the product he was hired to sell was to learn how his customers use it. He does all his sales presentations to large audiences in just this way, turning the monitor away from him so he can’t see it, and turning up the volume on the speaker so the audience can hear what he’s hearing and know what the user experience for a visually impaired person will be.
Hope this helps.
February 9, 2024 at 5:25 pm #1856Luke ChildParticipant
It’s really kind of you to take the time to reply, so thanks for the recommendation.
I hadn’t considered turning a monitor away for presentations. This sounds like a positive way to begin to understand some of the associated experiences through practice. Perhaps I’ll give this a go if I get the chance to talk about my studies in the near future!
Thanks again, and I hope you’re well.
February 9, 2024 at 5:38 pm #1857Jay PocknellKeymaster
Thanks very much for the intro, and your support for SWS on social media! I really appreciate you reaching out on here.
As a counterpoint to Steve, I do have some sight and generally rely on screen magnification and tweakable display settings for access, rather than using a screen reader for all navigation. Though I do like to use a screen reader for long passages of text.
There’s some great accessibility work happening in the video game world. SightlessKombat is in my team at RNIB, as gaming specialist, and it’s always awesome to hear about the latest developments that are happening across the industry.
There’s also some interesting project happening that are exploring the use of the Sony and Microsoft accessible video game controllers as input devices for music software / MIDI.
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