STEP 10

Provide Effective Internationalization and Accessibility

Today the Internet and the market for software are global. They cross endless cultural and language boundaries, each with its own requirements, conventions, customs, and definitions of acceptability. To be accepted, and used, a screen or page's text and images must reflect the needs and sensibility of each partner in the worldwide community where it is used. Comprehension and recall can be enhanced when presented information is culturally appropriate (Spyridakis and Fukuoka, 2002). To make a product acceptable worldwide, it must be internationalized. A system must also be designed to be usable by an almost unlimited range of people, being accessible to anyone who desires to use it. The design concepts used to achieve these goals are called internationalization and accessibility. This step addresses these design issues and includes the following:

  • International considerations
    • Localization
    • Cultural considerations
    • Writing text
    • Using images and symbols
  • Accessibility considerations
    • Types of disabilities
    • Designing for accessibility

International Considerations

To create a product for use internationally may involve two steps, internationalization and localization (Russo and Boor, 1993). Internationalization is the process of isolating culturally specific elements from a product. The German text of a program developed in Germany, for example, is isolated from the program itself. This occurs in the country where the ...

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