Dealing with Color Blindness

I myself have ordinary color vision, so I'm not particularly sensitive to color blindness. However, one of the participants in FileMaker Inc.'s Community discussion list, Peter Sijmons of Szienz Software in Leiden, Nederland, develops programs for use by people with disabilities, and he conducted a survey of actual color-blind people to find out what color combinations were easy or hard for them to read. He reports:

These may vary on a person-by-person basis, as there are degrees of color blindness, so on the horizontal axis of the standard color palettes it may be hard to see differences, but on the vertical axis (intensity within the same color column) the difference becomes clearer.

So, for example, if you have green and red adjacent fields, make sure you also make a jump in the vertical axis. When the green is 3rd field from the bottom, the adjacent red should be either 2nd or 4th from the bottom. This nuance will be picked up in most cases.

Since I make extensive use of color in my own layout designs, I'm going to try to be more cognizant of these concerns in the future.

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