CALL FOR PARTICIPATION
Second International Workshop on Internationalisation of Products and Systems (IWIPS2000). 13-15 July 2000, Baltimore, Maryland, USA. A previously announced deadline for submission of papers to IWIPS2000 has been extended to March 1, 2000. The revised call for papers is available at http://www.acm.org/~perlman/IWIPS2000.html. For details of last year's IWIPS workshop, visit http://webctr.net/IWIPS99/.
Isys Information Architects has expanded its staff.
Thomas Harrison Hayes, shown here being welcomed by Isys President Brian Hayes, was brought on board January 13, 2000, with the expectation that he will eventually assume an executive position within the company. During the next few months, the entire staff will be devoted to Thomas' transition to the company, which will likely contribute to delays in site updates and the staff's ability to respond to email in a timely manner. Additional images can be seen at Thomas' homepage, but be forewarned: I'm a new dad with a new digital camera and a cable modem.
Bad GUI in the News
J. Peter Mugaas send in a link to a press release describing a recent lawsuit filed against America Online on behalf of the National Federation for the Blind. A copy of the complaint is available at http://www.nfb.org/aolcompl.htm. The lawsuit alleges that AOL specifically designed its service and proprietary browser to be incompatible with screen access programs used by persons with visual impairments.
The following features of the user interface were cited in the complaint as barriers to persons with visual impairments: the use of unlabeled graphics in place of text, the lack of keyboard access to controls and functionality, and the use of custom controls painted on the screen instead of the use of standard operating system controls. The suit alleges that as a result, the information on the screen cannot be converted by screen access programs such as screen readers and refreshable Braille displays.
Hopefully, the implications of the lawsuit will be recognizable to those developers who emphasize "pretty" over good design.