Customization possibilities for colorblind mode

Case number:845833-2010918
Topic:Game: Display
Opened by:Jumper2
Opened on:Sunday, December 6, 2020 - 05:38
Last modified:Monday, December 7, 2020 - 04:26

I've mentioned this idea to several folks, but logging it here to preserve it.

Given that difficulties distinguishing colors can depend on both the type and degree of color blindness, it may be that the "colorblind" mode may not work for all individuals.

This suggestion is that it should be possible to write a small web-app that renders some Foldit type displays and describes the information they attempt to convey using colors. It then allows the user to pick colors that they can distinguish and re-renders the sample displays for verification.

When the user is satisfied with the results, the web-app should generate a set of color specifications that can be pasted over the existing colors in the options.txt file on the user's computer.

This has several benefits:
1) It should level the playing field for users by guaranteeing that they are able to understand what the game is trying to convey through the use of colors across the various displays.
2) It would work on all colors that are specified in the options.txt file, not just the ones with colorblind alternatives.
3) It would generate mockup displays, not use the game code, meaning it would be 100% separate from the game code base and could be written by anyone.

The two limitations are:
1) Some colors seem to be hard coded, these would not be able to be customized. Hopefully, over time, all colors will eventually be able to be externally specified in an options file.
2) The application is trivial to write as a standalone utility, but requiring a user to download a program to generate the color options is not ideal. The best case is that it would be a web-based application that would be access via a browser. This would require a server to host it. Perhaps this could be permitted on the new website rollout. (This is the primary reason I haven't already written something to provide this service.)

(Sun, 12/06/2020 - 05:38  |  2 comments)

Joined: 12/06/2008
Groups: Contenders

This has been brought up in the past, at .

I have moderate to severe deuteranomaly (color vision deficiency affecting green receptors). The current "colorblind mode" scheme uses dark blue - light blue - white - pink - red to show segment score, and is adequate for my needs. I do find the myriad of colors used in the Undo graph to be next to useless, as I am unable to discern between orange, yellow, green, and all the shades in between.

Perhaps a solution is to create multiple "colorblind" palettes for the three major types of color deficiencies, rather than just the current one, which serves the 8% of people that are "green colorblind".

Jumper2's picture
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Joined: 07/19/2020
Groups: Gargleblasters

This was an idea that was a recommended implementation of how you summarized it in you post on the other thread of "allowing players to create their own color palettes for the various tools that use color."

The color settings in the options.txt file cover more than just the colors that change when colorblind mode is enabled. (I guess now it is in theme.txt) It even sets the colors used for the undo graph. It has around 120 different color settings of which only 5 have "colorblind" alternatives.

So most times the code has to reference a particular color, that color is just given a name and then a function will look up what it should be from the text file. So rather than having developers add support for swapping the string they use to lookup particular colors everywhere in the game source code, it seemed to make more sense to me to have an external utility that would just generate the color table file with colors that were more friendly.

By having the utility use mockups of the display, it would be completely divorced from the source code and add zero impact to developers. It would let a user generate a palette that worked best for them. (My brother has a very slight deficiency in seeing red and thus confuses blue/purple and pink/grey) I imagine that once some alternative palettes are generated users would probably post them online so that a new user wouldn't have to go through the myriad of options just to start playing the game, but could just select from a palette that matched their particular perception patterns.

I wanted to get the idea logged since it would be best implemented as a web app rather than requiring a user to download a separate program. Also, a separate program would be different for each platform (Mac, Windows, Linux).

But if there are a significant number of users having issues with the game now, I'm willing to give it a go to try and create a basic palette creation tool. It would be a Python script. It should be possible to end up with a .exe file for windows to keep from having to have users install Python on their systems.


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