I am looking for resources (software, studies, documentation) to help inform design decisions for making command line utilities accessible.

Most of the programs I work on are command-line utilities. Many are non-interactive, but the more complex ones are "TUIs" or terminal UIs.

These TUIs have features such as tabs, interactive navigation, progress bars, key bindings etc..

I am not familiar with adaptive software for terminals (is there an equivalent of a screenreader?) and therefore am not sure how these types of TUI features may impact users with vision or motor impairments.

  • Hi Nick, what do you mean about accessible? Most TUIs are quite accessible and customizable to improve accessibility (to some degree). Do you have any specific concern such as voice commands or are you talking in general?
    – Devin
    Nov 8, 2019 at 19:33

2 Answers 2


You could check out the following links if it helps:




  • 1
    You research brought valuable references 👍 Could you add some lines or description that explain each links essential contribution to the question?
    – hc_dev
    Nov 29, 2019 at 18:59

Accessibility of CLIs may be only achieved on behalf of the terminal/shell environment the command-line application is run on.

Accessible user interface

Since the nature of CLI brings keyboard input and (major only) textual output with it, they can be accessed by screen/text readers as output-adapter and keyboard(-emulators, e.g on-screen keyboard or voice-recognition) as input-adapters.

See the various platforms' features

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