For accessibility assignment, I looked into p5 editor with Colour Contrast Analyser (CCA). The CCA helps to figure out the legibility of text and the contrast of visual elements, along with further useful information like color blindness simulator.
The first input I tried on was contrast between grey text and lighter grey(?) background. I used the color picker, and it came out as #B5B5B5 for text (File, Edit, Sketch, Help&Feedback, Auto-refresh...etc) and#FBFBFB for background. Unfortunately, the contrast ratio was 2:1, which fulfill neither "minimum" nor "enhanced" standard for both large and regular text display.
The good news is that p5's point color, #EA285F, which is often used for UI components and logo resulted enough ratio to satisfy Contrast(Minimum) for large text, and most importantly, passed the Non-text Contrast. On the other hand, although the same pink color is used for hover text - it still fail for regular text contrast.
Through a larger scope, FOSS/FLOSS is ultimately another form of collective intelligence built by crowds. As similar examples in the same category, there are big data and wiki, although their methodology can vary. These examples require continuous self-inspection and high morale to be actively maintained. If you think about the recent big data related issues and how they make people to be nervous, it’s easy to understand why transparency is critical; people want to know what they participate into.
Emma Irwin said “ …when audience remains homogeneous, and abuse goes unchallenged.” My experience in FOSS participation is close to zero, but I can agree with the sentence due to my past habit of editing wiki. I was intrigued by the amount of information along with its informality, but its informal aspect often allowed collective brutality as well, especially in documents about politics, religion and/or gender. Not to mention that about ten years ago internet users were much more homogenous, so the internal wiki system that is similar to the one (i.e. opening issues and pull request) in Github did not function successfully.
Sometimes it feels like the only solution is time. During ten years, the wiki gradually gained broader spectrum of contributors, which delivered diverse viewpoints and resource in its contents. It's ironic that the wiki simply seems even less peaceful from outside, by its increased number of debates/issues - but that is how people find better ways in real world: by arguing and colliding each other.
Processing and FLOSS was a helpful reading in terms of understanding basic concepts and vocabularies of free software. It also led me to Why Open Source misses the point of Free Software, and my favorite part was when Richard Stallman clarifies the term “free” by saying “..think of “free speech,” not “free beer.”
Probably it’s another reason why FLOSS is FLOSS, not FOSS - to make clear that it’s about the ideals of liberty. This particular description about embedded ideology in software comes back in Taeyoon Choi’s Worms, Butterflies and Dandelions. Open source tools for the arts.
On another hand, such ideology can bloom and be maintained only after achieving certain conditions in social structure - which makes the use of term “ecology” understandable. Casey Reas says “This creates complex contingencies. If one of these parts stops being maintained or has an error, the other software within the ecology are affected.”; and I think this is a nice way to frame the relationship between different open source projects. The fact that it requires such social atmosphere shows its powerful side, but also how vulnerable it can be - often being misinterpreted as “free beer” to the society.
As my learning about less design-related subjects progressed, I’ve been doing various coding exercises. Meanwhile, my participation in open source projects and community never happened.
It’s inevitable to encounter open source projects at some point of learning, especially in educational environment like ITP. However, although I got tremendous help from these projects, it’s still challenging and unfamiliar for me to actually make participation in the community.
There can be many factors. One thing is me not having adequate developing knowledge, which takes me aways from being “helpful” in rising issues and improving projects. This can be considered as a technical factor.
On another hand, I was surprised in first class session and Mel Chua’s reading about the importance of people’s manner in open source community. The reading clearly states that “the people are more important than the code”. I understand this part as not only for individual contributors, but also for the project itself as well, regarding the nature of open source projects.
In that sense, there’s also a psychological factor that prevented me from participation - by stepping back as a mere observer. As much as I’ve been largely helped and amazed by these projects, I would like to learn more about them, and having a habit of participating through this class.