Category Archives: News

New Outfit

And again. I changed the design of Colblindor again. Why? Because I already didn’t like the old one anymore and it was cluttered and not really expandable.

This time I switched to a theme, which I didn’t have to change much. Just simple and nice. I hope you like it too. Maybe I am a bit change addicted and should better put some more effort into good content than changing the parameters of this blog all the time. But that’s the way I work…

By the way the theme is called NonZero and was released by Headsetoptions.

Tangled Bank #72

The newest Tangled Bank is up and running. It’s already number 72 – and counting. This time featured by Chris at his blog Ouroboros (research in the biology of aging).

Tangled Bank #72 is called: What’s in a name? and listens a whole lot of interesting articles about “science and medicine, broadly defined”.

There are even a few other posts around the topic color – broadly defined:

See you next time at Tangled Bank #73.

New Design for Colblindor

I decided to redesign my weblog because I didn’t like the colors and the fancy style anymore. That’s why I started to look out for a new theme which I could modify to fit my needs.

The new design is simpler and less distracting. I’m not a designer, it’s not perfect but I will try to improve it in the next days and weeks. And of course the different ideas come from different sources of nice and great pages.

Now it’s up to you if you like it also and can get around easily. And if there are some regular readers out there I would like to hear your opinion. Thanks.

Do Journalists Have A Work Ethic?

About two month ago I was being contacted by Joanna L. Ossinger, a journalist of the online Wall Street Journal. She was on the way to write a review about eyePilot, a software which helps colorblind people. I wrote about this tool earlier this year when it was released the first time (you can read about it here and here).

EyePilotEyePilot could be found in the press a lot. The made it to many news during release time and once again just before school started, because they see it as a helpful tool not only for adults on their everyday work but also for children at school when working with computers. About 8% of men and 0.5% of women are affected by color blindness and this usually from the beginning of their life.

So Joanna contacted me to hear my opinion about the eyePilot and other tools which help colorblind people. I can’t say we had a lively discussion but it went back and forth a few times. I told her my opinion about eyePilot and other tools. In the end I asked her if she would be so kind to mention my weblog or share a link or at least send me the link to the article when it is online.

I never heard again from Joanna.

A few days back I wanted so see if it is maybe already online. I found it right away: Is that Red? by Joanna L. Ossinger, published October 23, 2006.

She didn’t use any of my thoughts – that’s ok.
She didn’t mention my weblog or share a link – that’s ok.
She didn’t send me a link when it was published – that’s not ok at all.

I can live with a lot. I don’t care if she used anything I said or nothing at all. I can understand if she doesn’t mention me or link to my weblog. But what I definitely can’t understand and can’t accept is that she didn’t even send me the link to the article when it was published. Do journalists have a work ethic? And if you can answer this with yes, isn’t it included in the work ethic to inform the people who invested time and shared knowledge, to inform them what is going on?

BeobachterBy the way, a few weeks back I was photographed and interviewed by a journalist on the street. I even had to review my words before they were printed in the magazine. Again I asked if I can get a copy (isn’t this naturally to do so?). But I only had to find out about my colleagues that I was featured in the article including a picture of me. I had to contact the journalist one more time and beg for a copy, which I received just a couple of days ago.

Next time a journalist asks me a favor I will think about it twice!

Vote for ColorLuminator

If you are from Down-Under and haven’t voted yet, go and see and make your choice.

Voting is open till 3rd of November.

You don’t know which chap to support? I already talked about the ColorLuminator and Color Vision for Colorblinds. Ian Cannon invented a nice little handy tool which can read colors. If you need some more information about the ColorLuminator to make your choice I can give some insights from the inventors themselves:

  1. Extensive colour palette – We have divided the RGB colour palette into 729 well-defined divisions and we have researched numerous colour-industry colour charts and major internet sites to assign a suitable colour name for each division. This procedure took over four weeks, for we wanted to make sure that each colour name is universally recognised eg. For the division R-128, G-160, B-96, we had the options of using Nile Green, Paris Green, Asparagus Green, Dull Green, Arcadian Green … We decided upon Asparagus Green as we felt this name conjured up the best image of the specific green colour being described.
  2. LCD display with clear black writing on a light green background, that includes the following details for each colour:
    • color name
    • integral RGB values
    • integral CYMK values
    • integral luminosity, hue and saturation values

    This will allow for more accurate colour matching and laboratory or industrial use if required.

  3. Luminance Contrast – Our device has a small memory which can store the last colour reading. This enables the device to measure the luminosity of two colours and determine the luminosity contrast between these two colours using an algorithm integrated into the device’s software. This has a huge application in the building industry. According to Australian Standard 1428.1 – 2001, all new buildings are required to have a luminance contrast of over 30% for stairways, door frames, signage, large glazed areas, handrails, reception desks and even door handles. Bus bays, train platforms, pedestrian crossings are all required to have tactile indicators with a luminance contrast of over 30%. Even public park benches, bollards and garbage bins must have the same level of contrast.
  4. Currently industry is supposed to use expensive spectrophotometers or colourimeters to determine the luminous values of contrasting surfaces and the analysis of the luminous contrast is conducted back in the office. This is so cumbersome a procedure, that most of the relevant organisations are unable to perform these readings. In recent contact with the two men who chaired the ME64 committee that was responsible for developing the Australian Standard 1428.1, they have expressed deep interest in our project. So much so that they want us to do a presentation at the Association of Access Consultants of Australia AGM in early November 2006. They believe our device would be an ideal instrument for on-site luminance contrast readings. One of the two men is also a member of the ISO (International Standards Organisation) and he taking our recommendations to the international committee for the use of the Australian version of the luminance contrast algorithm to be standardised internationally.
  5. Applications of our device:
    • Builders and restorers can simply match paints, stains and other finishes
    • Luminance contrast can be determined. This is useful for making building and facilities safe for vision impaired, designing web pages, selecting the clearest chalk in a classroom, for the most effective advertising, for signage, for image contrast in aviation helmet displays …
    • Army can quickly produce camouflage clothing for local
    • Gardeners can determine when fruit or vegetables are ripe
    • Colours can be identified at night
    • Colours can be determined in most light sources, eg navy and black are difficult to differentiate under fluorescent lights.
    • Stamp collectors can readily determine different shades of older stamps
    • Profoundly blind can determine colours
    • Colour blind and vision impaired people can readily identify colours. This can be a big problem in Geography where topographic maps have altitudes colour coded and the colours chosen are extremely hard to differentiate.

I hope this is enough to convince you that they really made a great job and need your voice.

Color Luminator

I just recently wrote about the ColorLuminator and how this tool could help get Color Vision for Colorblinds. Two students developed a tool at school and are on the way to win a big check to push the ColorLuminator further into production. Their science teacher Stuart Garth contacted me by email because the internet voting on the Nescafé Big Break competition starts soon. Please read what he says:

Dear Daniel
My name is Stuart Garth and I am the science teacher of Ian Cannon and Rickystan Savaiko, the students who have designed and constructed the ColorLuminator. Firstly, I would like to thank you for your promotion of the boy’s product. Internet voting starts on September 19th and goes to October 31st. The most votes we get, the greater the chance of winning the $100 000. […]

Dear colorblind friends and friends of the colorblind: Visit the competition homepage and leave your vote for the fabulous ColorLuminator!

His note continued and showed, that the device has already quite a success story and how it made its way around the globe:

[…] We have already had interest from Austria, Holland, Italy, Canada, Japan and USA. The International Standards Organisation is also interested in the device and they will be reviewing the ColorLuminator in Lyon, France, October 2006.

Stuart Garth
Science Teacher
Redeemer Baptist School
2 Masons Drive
North Parramatta
NSW Australia
ph +61 2 9630 6311

I also included his address. Please don’t hesitate to contact him. He is happy to help anybody who is interested in the ColorLuminator.

Further readings:
Nescafé Big Break: Finalists 2006
Hot recipes for niche success

Related article:
Color Vision for Colorblinds

Poll-Results: Are you Colorblind?

Poll Colorblind - Results
Poll Colorblind – Results

The first poll of Colblindor was about color blindness – what else. I asked if you are colorblind yourself or not, or if you maybe don’t know it yet and are reading Colblindor because you would like to find out about it.

Over the last ten days 15 readers participated in the poll and I would like to thank everybody who attended. Only one out of them doesn’t know if he/she is colorblind or not. I hope this person learned something about his/her color blindness while reading through the articles.

The other 14 votes are split up into 6 persons who are colorblind and 8 who are not. Because only a handful of people joined the poll this can be interpreted in two ways:

  • Readers are split fifty-fifty into them who are colorblind and them who aren’t. Because we know from statistics that only about 10% of the population is colorblind, there are relatively more colorblind people looking for some information about their handicap.
  • The non colorblind lead the field of readers. Most readers aren’t colorblind and are looking for information about color vision deficiencies and related topics.

When the poll started I would have bet that there are more colorblind readers than not. This assumption was proven wrong and there are two causes I can think of which led to this result.

  1. People are searching for information about color blindness not only for themselves but also for their partners, family member, friends are maybe even their pets.
  2. Many untypical readers landed at Colblindor the last days through contributions to the Tangled Bank #54 and the writing project about blog goals from ProBlogger. This maybe falsified the result to some extend.

But enough speculations. Paint your own picture – more or less colorful, it doesn’t matter.

Related articles:
Poll: Are you Colorblind?
Colorblind Population

Blogging for Colors

Darren Rowse from ProBlogger started a new group writing project about blog goals. As I missed the last project on the topic habits of highly effective bloggers (I think I wasn’t really in the target group anyway as I am quite new to blogging) I’m joining in this time.

As this is the 101st article at Colblindor this is another good reason to think about my blog goals and share my thoughts, why I’m doing this, why I’m trying to write good content and why color blindness is worth blogging about.

Here is my list of blog goals, rated in order of appearance:

  1. Get to know the colors of blogging. Five month ago I didn’t know anything about weblogs and blogging. From the first moment on I was very fascinated about how weblogs are defining the new internet area and a new type of information flow. This made me feel that I had to learn more about it and this can be done best when joining the blog community with my own project.
  2. Write about a colorful niche. Everybody can write about almost everything. I didn’t want to have another live journal and that’s why I’ve chosen this small niche I’m writing about now. Also I couldn’t find a website which highlights all the different topics around color blindness and I think I can produce some extra value here.
  3. Sprinkle colors in my English writing skills. As English is not my mother tongue this is a great place to improve my English skills. Not only because of that I have chosen to write this blog in English but also because of the English reading audience is much bigger than the German. This was also in the back of my mind when choosing the language because striving for a big readership is another reason for this blog I can’t deny.

Apart from the above blog goals I also have to admit that I am a techie. That’s why I can’t sit still for a week not to try out something new in my blog. And I am also addicted to statistics. Maybe because of my studies in mathematics I can’t take my eyes away from daily hits, visits, inbound links and much more.

And last but not least I would like to earn a lot of money from blogging. But this is something I don’t emphasize as my blog goal but something that’s most welcome as soon as it starts flowing.

Colblindor as a Graph

I found this little tool where you can show Websites at Graphs through ProBlogger. So I thought I’ll join in and put up the graph produced by my weblog.

Colblindor as a Graph
Colblindor as a Graph

blue: for links (the A tag)
red: for tables (TABLE, TR and TD tags)
green: for the DIV tag
violet: for images (the IMG tag)
yellow: for forms (FORM, INPUT, TEXTAREA, SELECT and OPTION tags)
orange: for linebreaks and blockquotes (BR, P, and BLOCKQ. tags)
black: the HTML tag, the root node
gray: all other tags

As the dots are quite small my color blindness gets in my way to read the graph at its full value. It is not easy at all to tell the different dots apart from each other because the colors are not distinguishable.

  • Where is the Black dot among all those Blue ones?
  • Blue is very close to Violet,
  • Orange flows into Green,
  • Green is anyway the same as Red and
  • Yellow is sometimes hard to see at all.

It would be much better to use some kind of patterns to distinguish the different types. Only three different colors should be used in graphs that they can been told apart even by colorblinds. If you have a look at the legend above you would have to choose three well distinguishable colors and two extra patterns to make the website graph more readable.

If you like this graph, generate one yourself at Websites at Graphs or browse through the websitesasgraphs tag of Flickr.

Related articles:
Subway Maps
Color Code Power Types
Green vs. Orange