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November 30, 2022

UnlockedMaps provides real-time accessibility info for rail transit users

screenshot of UnlockedMaps in New York. Stations that are labeled green are accessible while stations that are labeled orange are not accessible. Yellow stations have elevator outages reported.

Congratulations to CREATE Ph.D. student Ather Sharif, Orson (Xuhai) Xu, and team for this great project on transit access! Together they developed UnlockedMaps, a web-based map that allows users to see in real time how accessible rail transit stations are in six metro areas including Seattle, Philadelphia (where the project was first conceived by Sharif and a friend…


November 15, 2022

CREATE Leadership at ASSETS’22 Conference

ASSETS 2022 logo, composed of a PCB-style Parthenon outline with three people standing and communicating with each other in the Parthenon, representing three main iconic disabilities: blind, mobility impaired, deaf and hard of hearing.

CREATE Associate Director Jon Froehlich was the General Chair for ASSETS’22, the premier ACM conference for research on the design, evaluation, use, and education related to computing for people with disabilities and older adults. This year, over 300 participants from 37 countries engaged with state-of-the-art research in the design and evaluation of technology for people…


June 7, 2022

Wobbrock team’s VoxLens allows screen-reader users to interact with data visualizations

A screen reader with a refreshable Braille display. Credit: Elizabeth Woolner/Unsplash

Working with screen-reader users, CREATE graduate student Ather Sharif and Co-Director Jacob O. Wobbrock, along with other UW researchers, have designed VoxLens, a JavaScript plugin that allows people to interact with visualizations. To implement VoxLens, visualization designers add just one line of code. Millions of Americans use screen readers for a variety of reasons, including…


November 18, 2021

Ph.D. student Ather Sharif targets personalized design, visualizations, ableism

Headshot of Ather Sharif outside on a sunny balcony with blue sky behind him

Media sites offer digital graphics for important information such as election polling data, stock market trends, and COVID-19, excluding many users. CREATE Ph.D. student Ather Sharif‘s research on Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) focuses on designing data visualizations to be accessible by people with low vision or who are blind. “We have built a world where people…


June 24, 2021

CREATE Community Day and research showcase

CREATE Community Day 2021 was a rich program that included an important discussion of the concerns and approaches to just, sustainable accessibility research that puts the needs of community members with disabilities front and center.

CREATE members highlighted what their labs are doing, with time to hear about a variety of individual projects. Read on for a sample of the presentations.


June 10, 2021

Grad student Kelly Mack receives a Dennis Lang award

Kelly Mack, a young white woman with wavy brownish hair, smiles for the camera. She wears a blue floral blouse.

Kelly Mack, a Ph.D. student in Computer Science and mentored by CREATE Founding Co-Director Jen Mankoff, received a Dennis Lang Award from the UW Disabilities Studies program and the following praise: “Kelly is dedicated to improving accessibility for disabled students at UW through her research, service, and mentoring and allyship. Her thesis work will examine…