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hand sign language spelling out "design"

Three Experts Advocate for Inclusive Design

On World Interaction Design Day, three designers shared how creatives can build a world focused on inclusion, accessible experiences, and shared dialogue ...
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Close up of man in glasses

Sight-Impaired People Want to use Technology but are Excluded by Cost and Accessibility

Since the advent of home broadband, smartphones and other internet-enabled devices, there has been a shift in how we communicate with each other. The internet has certainly made many aspects ...
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Actress/producer Katy Sullivan and disability fashion stylist Stephanie Thomas.

Traditional clothes don’t work for some people with disabilities — and that’s a major problem

Stylist Stephanie Thomas helps her clients find smart, fashionable looks and wants to make adaptive clothing more readily available ...
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Stock photo of girl on laptop

Inclusive Design: why designing for accessibility benefits everyone

Making what you’re designing accessible helps both disabled and able-bodied alike ...
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Faces of two crash-test dummies that have been through crashes

How Bad Design Perpetuates Harmful Stereotypes

Specialized solutions for disadvantaged people often have more to do with negative perceptions than actual needs ...
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OXO Swivel

The Untold Story of The Vegetable Peeler That Changed The World

Smart Design’s Davin Stowell shares the origin story of the OXO Swivel, one of the great icons of 20th-century industrial design ...
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Kat Holmes, right, founder of the digital magazine Mismatch.design, in a photo shoot with Mismatch contributors Tiffany Brown and John Porter.

Working Geek: Tips for Serving a Broader Audience

"The moment when someone recognizes that something has led to exclusion, they want to fix it." ...
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A group of Google employees, including Allen (center), prepare to give product demonstrations at an Assistive Technology Industry Association conference

How Google has Stepped Up

In the past few years, Google has shifted the way that it thinks about accessibility, moving from grassroots advocacy to codified systems. Beyond making all its products accessible, the next ...
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The prosthetic leg, called the Fin

The Fin

Researchers have developed a new prosthetic leg that will allow amputees to swim without having to worry about switching to a waterproof prosthetic leg as they get in and out ...
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paper doll cartoon, people of different ethnicities, two people in wheelchairs, three standing.

How to Implement Inclusive Design in Your Organization

It’s extremely important when talking about inclusive design to talk about implementation. Once you’ve gained an understanding of what inclusive design truly is (and isn’t), the task becomes making it ...
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models with disabilities sporting the brand’s bold bathing suits.

Fashion Brand Chromat Introduces ‘Pool Rules’ Campaign Featuring Models With Disabilities

Fashion brand Chromat is bringing all the best poolside looks with its latest swimwear campaign. Chromat is known for its inclusivity, and these ads are no different. The “Pool Rules” campaign ...
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Fingers typing on a black keyboard

Making The Web Easier To Access For People With Disabilities

About 20 percent of Americans have one or more disabilities, and just like in the physical world, the digital one is not always readily accessible. So, going to a website, ...
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User testing the virtual reality simulation goggles

Virtual reality is helping people with disabilities conquer overwhelming real-life situations

"This is a safe, quiet environment where they can experience the task in a simulation before actually doing it in the real world." ...
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A person wearing headphones using a braille keyboard on a laptop computer

Inclusive Design & Development at Ushahidi

From fostering transparency and fairness in elections to alleviating suffering after droughts and natural disasters, we’re all about giving people the platforms they need to raise their voices and be ...
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The Xbox Adaptive Controller

Accessible Gaming with the Xbox Adaptive Controller

At Microsoft, we believe in empowering every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more ...
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Four infographic images to represent the various abilities and capabilities of those who use apple devices.

Design For Everyone

By understanding the range of abilities and capabilities of the people who use our apps, you can design robust apps that work for everyone ...
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E-Dermis, prosthetic hand, designed by scientist at John Hopkins University

ELECTRONIC SKIN “E-DERMIS”

In order to restore a sense of normalcy to amputees, scientists at John Hopkins University are working on an electronic skin that allows the wearer to feel touch as well ...
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The Hero Arm picking up a glass of water

This Customizable Bionic Arm Turns Disabilities Into Superpowers

This robotics company created the world's first medically certifiable & customizable 3D printed arm ...
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Three screenshots on the iphone of the accessibility features.

Vision-Focused Accessibility Efforts

A new article published last night by The Wall Street Journal takes a look into how accessibility-focused technology has the "potential to fundamentally change the mobility, employment and lifestyle of the blind ...
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Pinterest's new color palette for their product's that’s accessible with a 3.00:1 contrast ratio and up.

Seven Best Practices for Inclusive Product Design

At Pinterest, our mission is to help you discover and do what you love. We’re building a product for everyone, because the best Pinterest is inclusive and easily usable for ...
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Seven children of various physical and cognitive disabilities. They are wearing Target's new "Adaptive Clothing" line.

Designing “Adaptive Clothing” For Those With Special Needs

Companies are releasing new inclusive lines that solve some of the dressing challenges that people with physical and mental disabilities face ...
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User in a wheelchair testing the new Microsoft accessibility controller

Microsoft is quietly changing the way we work, again

how much design has changed since spellcheck was introduced at Microsoft? Take a look at a feature that now sits right next to spellcheck in Office apps. It’s called Accessibility ...
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An individual wearing the Microsoft Hololens AR headset

The Radical Frontier of Inclusive Design

Why shouldn’t everyone have the chance to experience VR? ...
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Finger touching the feel the view system by ford

Ford showcases smart window that allows blind to ‘feel’ the view

Ford revealed a prototype technology, called Feel the View, that allows the blind passengers to "feel" what they can't see outside a car's window ...
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The Lance Wyman’s iconic Mexico68 Olympic identity on the left and the Apple’s ubiquitous Activity iOS branding on the right to demonstrate that the principles of design remain consistent and timeless.

Universal Principles of User Experience Design

We’re increasingly asked to solve design problems that — as new technologies are imagined and invented — have never been solved before. The good news is that the principles of ...
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A white braille smart watch with a black band and red dial

Introducing The Dot Braille Smartwatch For The Visually Impaired

Developed in Korea, the Dot is an extremely new product that offers a new take on telling the time and giving notifications to the visually impaired ...
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user operating a scewo stair climbing wheel chair to manoeuvre down the stairs

The Revolutionary Wheelchair Rising To A Challenge

The chair allows disabled people to easily reaching a location that previously would have been inaccessible: a game-changing, retractable set of rubber tracks allows the chair to manoeuvre up and ...
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Visitors view the "Access+Ability" exhibition in New York's Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Museum showcasing new ideas in inclusive design

‘Access+Ability’ exhibit showcases designs for, and by, those with disabilities

Eye-catching objects designed for, and by, people with physical and other disabilities are the focus of the current "Access+Ability" exhibition in New York ...
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Grace Jun is the executive director of Open Style Lab

Designing for All Abilities

Shopping for and choosing clothes is challenging enough that an entire industry of stylists, magazine editors and fashion bloggers has been created to help. But imagine if your parameters included ...
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Design with a difference: Details from the exhibition “Access+Ability” at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.

How Design for One Turns Into Design for All

Make a specialty item easier to use — and at the same time, fun, cool and beautiful — and that item may be embraced and used by all. The real ...
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User holding the new Microsoft canetroller

Microsoft’s new ‘canetroller’ brings VR to the visually impaired

Developers from Microsoft’s research lab created the “canetroller”. The team’s goal was to create a device that would successfully enable the visually impaired to form an accurate mental map of ...
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ISO Dot 50 Accessible Icon Project featuring several accessible icons

Why Accessible Design Isn’t a Niche Market

A new exhibition at Cooper Hewitt reminds us that all design is fundamentally assistive. What can designing for accessibility teach us about designing universally? ...
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Suman Kanuganti, founder and CEO of Aira, with a pair of Google Glasses that can help blind people "see" and navigate their way through chaotic environments like airport terminals, grocery stores and busy city streets with the help of human — and soon artificial-intelligence-based — agents connected to those glasses and the blind user via a private wireless channel set up by AT&T.

A.I. ‘Glasses’ Turn Airports, Other Chaotic Places For The Blind Into Liberating Experiences

Navigating through airports was daunting. The wide-open unfamiliar spaces, the free-flowing and chaotic pedestrian traffic, the numerous shops and restaurants can make the airport experience uncomfortable for blind travelers ...
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Evolution of the GoodGrip handle from OXO.

Universal design is for everyone, everywhere

It doesn't work for anyone unless it works for everyone ...
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Target logo with a photo of their jeans being worn by diverse bodies.

Target’s Universal Thread Line Will Include Sensory-Friendly and Adaptive Apparel

Target’s latest women’s fashion line was designed with all bodies in mind, including those with disabilities and sensory-sensitivities. On Monday, Target announced its clothing line, Universal Thread, will feature sensory-friendly and ...
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The bendy straw

Putting theory into practice: the case for universal design

The ‘bendy’ straw is a classic example of how a product aimed at a particular demographic ended up being useful to the entire population ...
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Assistive technology displayed at the New Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Exhibit

Every Designer Should See the Smithsonian’s Illuminating Exhibit on Accessibility

Sleek wheelchairs, stylish walking sticks, powered body suits and eye writing technology: New Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum accessible design exhibit shows a bright future for aging adults and people ...
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Individual wearing the Aira glasses, touching the side of the glasses.

AIRA: SERVICE FOR BLIND PEOPLE TO MAKE THEM MORE INDEPENDENT

Through Aira, a blind person is connected to an agent through their smart glasses. Whenever this person needs helps, they just press a button on a camera, and are immediately ...
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Individual in a wheelchair is testing out a disability-friendly video game.

Games for people with disabilities

Gaming programmers are now developing video games to be "disability-friendly" ...
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This puffer jacket has Velcro side seams, which makes it easier to put on and take off. This could be beneficial for kids who spend a lot of time sitting down or have difficulty with gross or fine motor skills.

Target Is Releasing Adaptive Apparel For Kids With Disabilities

As part of its popular Cat & Jack Line, Target will soon launch adaptive apparel with features for kids with disabilities ...
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Cartoon illustrating elderly women using a ride share phone application to obtain a ride.

Uber, but for Grandma

Rideshare startups tackle the senior-transport crisis, and test problem-solving the limits of tech ...
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A self-driving shuttle at Texas A&M

Are self-driving cars the future of mobility for disabled people?

Self-driving cars could revolutionize how disabled people get around their communities and even travel far from home. Self-driving cars present fundamentally new ways to think about transportation and accessibility ...
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Individual testing the new virtual reality goggles

Virtual Reality Project May Give New Wheelchair Users a Confidence Boost

A group of designers has made a virtual reality system that lets people push a real wheelchair through a virtual world. This new system will give the newly-disabled may soon have ...
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This puffer jacket has Velcro side seams, which makes it easier to put on and take off. This could be beneficial for kids who spend a lot of time sitting down or have difficulty with gross or fine motor skills.

Target Is Releasing Adaptive Apparel For Kids With Disabilities

As part of its popular Cat & Jack Line, Target will soon launch adaptive apparel with features for kids with disabilities ...
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A Lego minifigure in a wheelchair is pictured at the Lego booth in Nuremberg, Germany during the 67th International Toy

Brick by brick, Lego diversifies its toys with a minifigure in a wheelchair

Lego unveiled its first-ever minifigure in a wheelchair, which first appeared at international toy fairs this week. Donning a beanie and hoodie, the male plastic figure is part of the company’s ...
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blind person walking with smartphone

‘Virtual vision’ system is a boost for blind independence

New iBeacon guidance technology could revolutionize indoor navigation for the visually impaired. A pilot project is currently underway at the CNIB’s headquarters in north Toronto ...
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talking tactile map in Shedd Aquarium in Chicago

Shedd Aquarium Talking Tactile Maps

Shedd Aquarium in Chicago is making a strong move toward universal design, to make sure that this amazing cultural and scientific resource is welcoming and accessible to everyone,  including visitors ...
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Lizbeth Goodman

Inclusive design to help people with autism and intellectual disabilities

Technology can help people with autism and intellectual disabilities but inclusive design is the key, UCD professor Lizbeth Goodman tells Claire O’Connell ...
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space suit by final frontier design

Seven Top Creatives Discuss Expanding the Idea of Universal Design

Design is a process by which we improve our world by shaping the objects, environments and systems in it, from the mundane (cupcake tins, lawnmowers) to multi-authored intangibles (governments, social ...
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Platform Lifts

Assistive Technology: Changing Perceptions of Disabilities

Assistive technology is becoming increasingly more advanced in the modern day world. This umbrella term is one that is constantly evolving over time to incorporate more technological devices designed to ...
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cars movie

New Accessibility App Makes Enjoying a Trip to the Movies Inclusive for All

For most young people, adolescence is a time filled with fashion and romantic concerns. For Alex Koren, his teen years were the beginning of a quest for equal access for ...
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person walking in a hallway with others siting the background
Recreation: A younger gentleman walking with an older man in the park
Public Buildings: aerial view of city buildings
Streets: people crossing an intersection
Housing: exterior view of a suburban house
Transportation: close up of dangling handles on a bus