Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Performance Is an Accessibility Issue

Stephanie Stimac:

After the storm, I was determined to find out why the ‘Report An Outage’ page was so painful to download.

I profiled the PSE Outage page after Addy Osmani tweeted about using the Coverage panel in the DevTools to check how much unused JavaScript was being loaded.

There were 4.6MB of unused code being downloaded on a page whose main and only content, apart from a sign in button, is a form to submit your address.

Paul Boag tweeted an excellent illustration of the benefits of designing for accessibility, dividing their impact into permanent, temporary, and situational occurrences. Performance could easily be on the same list: some people have permanently restricted bandwidth because of where they live or the device they use; temporarily, something like the storm that Stimac faced would impact connectivity; and simply getting in an elevator or being in a crowded city can be situations that impact performance.