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Beyond Code Compliance: Design for the Extremes

taught by: Seda Maurer

Session Summary:

As we try to address the Compliance of digital applications and sites, we need to consider a key and growing group of users: the maturing population! This group of users may have one or more of the known disabilities such as vision, hearing, mobility or cognitive!

The fact the by 2035 the 65+ population will outnumber the children demands serious attention to how we develop applications today and focus on good user experience for ALL users.

Organizations need to begin lookin at this as being “inclusive”, an “opportunity” for being innovative, and a sure way of increasing “revenues”!


At the current state of product development organizations, most concern themselves with meeting the minimum level of accessibility code compliance for the fear of a penalty, loss of business, or a lawsuit! They segregate “good usability” from “code compliance”! They even ask if complying WCAG 2.0, Level AA criteria is sufficient! They wonder why and when they may need to comply to the WCAG 2.1 criteria compliance!

Seda Maurer, CPACC and an advocate of Accessibility, will present some global figures and facts about how building compliant applications is not the question anymore! She will take a fresh look at the advantages of designing and developing products that are usable by people with all sort of abilities and disabilities.

These are unique times for businesses where they can take innovative design approaches for people with varied abilities. Designing for extremes guarantees that a product will satisfy ALL, including the mainstream. Such a product will increase the revenues of an organization, differentiate them from their competitors, and save them a great deal of cost at multiple levels.

During this session, Seda will help the participants to immerse in experiences such as vision impairment and mobility constraints. They will learn some of the pain points and the frustrations that ordinary users experience and will help them to gain empathy for the extreme users.

The participants will share their thoughts and feelings. They will create Empathy Maps, where they will collect the feedback from the exercise. They will analyze them and come up with solutions for the problems they experienced. These are the type of exercises that help product and service designers to gain empathy for their users. Empathy Maps are the basis for creating proper Personas and effective Journey Maps that are true to the end users’ needs and will help create more innovate solutions and better products!

Practical Skills:

Empathy immersion skills / Creating an Empathy map / How to ideate new ideas!