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When using colour as a coding mechanism, the number of colours used should be:

a. 7 or fewer b. 9 or fewer c. 6 or fewer d. 8 or fewer

Potentially a question for cognisc Stack Exchange but this question relates to the amount of colours a user can perceive at a given moment and in terms of UX, I guess, assigning colours to categorise elements.

For example, how many colours can the human brain take in at a given moment of time without over-complicating a design. For example, according to Dr Halberda (2006) colour plays a major role in catching the attention of people. One can select and attend up to 70 items at once if they are of the same colour. Colour-coding helps to keep things organised and simple. But what Halberda failed to account for is how many colours can be categorised at a given moment in time.

These are the only answers providing by the organisation body so unable to give a min or max answer. The meaning of fewer is less

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Needs much more context. What is the max number, what is the min number? What is the meaning of ewer? –  rk. Jun 11 '13 at 15:21
You mean like the colour coding in the new Gmail app? –  AndroidHustle Jun 11 '13 at 15:48
Edited comment to account for context.@AndriodHustle - similar yes, so how many can we interpret at a given moment without forgetting what each colour is intended to represent? –  UserConversion Jun 11 '13 at 16:20
Can we remove the multiple choice options from the question? It sounds like you want us to answer an exam question for you. –  Matt Obee Jun 11 '13 at 16:27
You might be interested in Trello's treatment of the subject, regarding its use of colored labels as well as being able to switch to patterns instead of colors for color-blindness: webapps.stackexchange.com/questions/19129/… –  jzx Jun 11 '13 at 17:34
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marked as duplicate by Ben Brocka Jun 11 '13 at 17:57

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1 Answer

We don't know what precisely you want to do with colours. But don't rely on colour alone to convey information. Otherwise your work would not be accessible. There are colour-blind people. And, if you do use colours, choose colours not close to each other.

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