As a user researcher, my view of human-computer interaction has been shaped by my experiences working with gamers with disabilities. Recently, I graduated from the University of Washington’s Master of Human-Computer Interaction and Design program, where I focused on developing myself as a researcher and understanding how professionals outside of games think of accessibility. This experience and my love for language led me to my current journey to understand how NLP and AI can open up new opportunities for people to communicate, express themselves, and play together – and the risks we face as these technologies assume greater roles in our lives.
My passion for accessibility began from my background in sound design, as it led me to explore how gamers who are blind or have low vision play video games. Since I believe the world is better when people are not withheld from sharing and accessing stories and creative experiences, I became an audio and dialogue producer for blind-accessible games like A Hero’s Call, Frequency Missing, and Alexa stories for Earplay. I also advocated as an accessibility consultant for companies like imitone LLC, The Deep End Games, Open Steno Project, others under NDA, and graduate and PhD teams, so they could better understand the role of audio in interactive accessibility.
I was lucky enough to be invited to share the insights I learned from this work at GameSoundCon, GAconf, CarouselCon, Montreal Indie Games Summit, and NYC Game Audio Meetup to raise awareness of gamers and audio professionals with disabilities. Just like with stories, I have always sought to connect people firsthand who are looking to learn about accessibility with those who are experts; therefore, I am grateful that people like Gina Zdanowicz and Spencer Bambrick (writers of The Game Audio Strategy Guide: A Practical Course), Zohar Gan of the Accessible Realities blog, and Audiokinetic have furthered this awareness by sharing my work. I am only one of the many who advocate for game accessibility, and I hope you will learn about them on my Resources page.
I have several other past involvements that generally follow the thread of access to information and connecting people for a common goal. You can check out these past positions on LinkedIn or on my condensed resume. You can also see some of my past clients and involvements below. If you’d like to get in touch, send me a message at adriane (at) smashclay (dot) com or on Twitter at @smashclayaudio.