Assume that you have made a beamer presentation and you want to check whether your slides are understandable for colourblind people. Is there a handy way to do so, maybe inside LaTeX?

Here is what I have found so far:

  • There are different kinds of colourblindness.
  • Special colour schemes for colourblind people exist. An example can be found here, and it is included in the metropolis package if I understand it correctly.
  • Online services to see how a colourblind person would see your slides exist (example1), but are not handy.

(Might be a broad question but I find it useful to collect information about this topic.)

  • 2
    My usual approach is to choose the slides which might make difficulties (usually the ones which would not make sense without the information conveyed by colour) convert them to png and use one of the online services. Additionally (even though I love colour) I try to remember that sometimes less is better and only use colour when the slides gains something by it. Jun 9 '17 at 13:02
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    I support the general question, but you might get some non-general answers, as there are OS-specific ways of simulating colourblindness.
    – Chris H
    Jun 9 '17 at 13:04
  • 3
    relates question: tex.stackexchange.com/q/122621/36296 Jun 9 '17 at 13:05
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    I wonder about the licensing of some of the scripts online -- could they be run locally in a pipeline?
    – Chris H
    Jun 9 '17 at 13:05
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    Avoid colours at all? That's what I do. Jun 9 '17 at 15:28

How to check: Categorize the different types of color-blindness (red-green, blue-green, etc), then: 1) find people with these conditions to review your slides, 2) use an available digital tool, or 3) use the poor-man's solution and print in greyscale: if any touching-colors are relatively similar, create more contrast.

If you're asking how to color-blind-proof your slides, the answer - if your primary concern is readability, rather than aesthetics - is two relatively simple rules (though the implementation could be more complicated).

  1. Outline everything in a colorblind-safe color that contrasts with the item outlined.
  2. Do not refer to things in your slides by color.

Example: If your text is black and is outlined in white, it will be perfectly readable, regardless of background color (assuming their vision isn't particularly blurry as well).

You could extend this example to diagrams and graphics too: put a green square inside a red circle and they might be indistinguishable to the right people. Outline the square in white, and the shapes will be perfectly distinguishable, even though they can't tell which is red and which is green. Thus, rule 2 (above) comes into play: don't refer to things in your slides by their color.

The key is really to know your audience and address them appropriately: If you suspect an average-population-density of color-blindness in the crowd, and have a small sample (crowd), you have little to worry about.

In the case of a small sample where you know a color-blind person will be attending, it would be considerate to determine their particular condition, and modify your slides to account for it.

If dealing with a sufficiently large crowd with suspected average-population-density of colorblindness, the rules above should suffice.

If addressing a group of color-blind folks of any size, I would go overboard in generating contrast in my slides and avoiding color-terms in my statements to make my presentation more understandable to them.

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