Carbon Footprint Calculator Usability

Hi, just been to try out the Carbon Footprint Calculator. The overall idea’s really interesting but in terms of design/usability it’s just horrendous.

The icons on the calculator are just completely unclear about what is and what is not selected. Here’s an example of some selected at random image
And in this image I can honestly stare at it for 5 minutes solid and not have a clue which are selected and which are not selected. After playing around for a while you can tell which ones you’ve changed from their original state – but then it’s in no way clear whether the original state is “selected” or “not selected”.

It may be that some of this is owing to me being slightly colourblind (and maybe some people here with full colour vision can comment on how they find it?), or having a different monitor contrast from the designers, but I did try turning colour filters on in Windows and that didn’t help at all, so I don’t think so – and anyway, if that is the case, I don’t know why Bulb would want to show such contempt for colourblind users.

What’s particularly annoying about this to me from a UX standpoint is, toggles like this are a solved problem. There are quite a few established patterns for showing toggles as on or off. Why reinvent the wheel, particularly when it doesn’t then match up with the design on the rest of the Bulb site?

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Hi @croinch, welcome to our Community and congrats on going big for your first post! :muscle:

Firstly, thanks for trying out our Carbon Calculator - our team has worked super hard on it, so it’s great to see that people are using it to measure their carbon footprint. Having said that, we recognise that it’s not perfect and we really appreciate any feedback you have, no matter how small.

I believe what we were going for was the ‘Bulb pink’ highlight for the selected icons, but I can completely appreciate that this might not be enough of a marked difference from the grey, especially for someone who is colourblind. I’m going to make sure this feedback is passed on to the team who deals with the Carbon Calculator, so that this can be a better resource for everyone.


I use a mobility scooter for transport, it doesn’t show that. It doesn’t show any non fossil fueled powered transport. I do not buy loads of clothes. I have all the appliances I want in the home, it could be years before I buy anything. As for food I have fish once a week, Pork twice a week, chicken four times a week.

Hi @Terminator

Thanks for the feedback, that’s all really useful for us. It’s also great to see you’ve given it a go as well, I’ll be sure to pass your comments along to our carbon calculator team.

As @Lou_at_Bulb says we want to make sure this is the best possible resource it can be, and we’d love to hear any other ideas you might have for it.