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An aging population needs accessible technology

posted by DL Byron on February 02, 2004

New research from Microsoft and Forrester finds that “Millions of Aging Baby Boomers Can Benefit from Accessible Technology.” As the workforce ages, the need for accessible technology grows. The research shows that the target audience for accessibility is much larger than expected. Baby Boomer’s can experience mild-to-severe physical and cognitive difficulties and impairments. Building accessibility into your sites can make it possibly for even more people to get their work done by accommodating their personal needs and preferences.

We had just finished the draft of our Flash MX presentation when I saw this press release. I’ve added a "Baby Boomer" bullet to the updated slides (live later this week). I hadn’t really thought about the needs of Baby Boomers, even though my dad has his computer set to 16 bit color, 800 x 600 resolution, and mondo fonts. That’s 57% of the population and it’s only going to grow. Besides resizable fonts and other techniques, one thing to consider is the complexity of the site. Is it easy for a Baby Boomer to purchase your product or read your blog? Or is it hidden behind a complicated design?

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