Over the years I have been to many software conference and events. And just before it was übercool to throw out things that don’t provide joy, I disposed of a massive pile of conference badges from Gartner symposiums, Sapphires, Risings and Openworlds and countless other events. The memory of these events tends to blur.

Next week’s event is rather different. Monkigras. James and team describe it as “The tech conference about Software, Craft, and Tech Culture.”

I’ve known James for a while, and I have watched Redmonk develop into successful business and at the same time cultivating a remarkable, caring community. The event theme is “Accessible Craft, creating great experiences for everyone”. I’ve been researching accessibility in the context of online recruiting, and James has graciously given me the opportunity to present my findings.

Around Davos, we hear the world’s leading tech companies talk loftily about how their solutions will help solve the world’s problems, by creating ethical supply chains, reducing global warming and many other noble endeavours. I don’t wish to belittle those good and fine intentions, but I do wish the software industry would look in the mirror and address the discrimination that software product inaccessibly creates for people with disabilities.

The Monkigras event next week will be helping to do just that, I think that is a fine thing. I’m going to learn so much from the other speakers and attendees. 

I’m reminded of the words of Ron Mace, the founder of Universal Design.

The design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.