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Finding Keys

Posted: 01 May, 2016. No comments
Using a simple colour code to identify villa keys each with a fob of red, yellow or blue.
Using a simple colour code to identify villa keys each with a fob of red, yellow or blue.
Photo of a bunch of keys showing three keys each with a coloured fob, red, yellow and blue.

The Key Problem

You know how it goes. You arrive home late at night and stand outside the door as you fumble your way through all of the keys on your key ring that look vaguely like they may fit the door lock. Anyone waiting for you to unlock the door will, if it takes more than a few moments, generally be wisecracking at your expense. Imagine being away from home on holiday. Great to be away but how to overcome the key problem?

The Path to a Solution

The ideal: make it easy to remember which key fits a particular door. I felt we need a colour scheme that has a simple formula which would then be easily remembered by guests at the Villa. I recalled Professor Edward De Bono and his Six Thinking Hats, a system which describes a tool for group discussion and individual thinking involving six coloured hats.

Borrowing from this idea I used seven colours to identify each of the various lockable external doors at the villa.

The Colour Code and some Verbal Cues

Red – this is the front door, the fire escape, where the fire extinguisher and fire blanket are located.

Blue – the back door gives the most direct access to the water filled swimming pool.

Brown – the balcony door, many people choose this as the place to top up their sun tan or to gaze out at the countryside.

Yellow – our accessible flat, bathed in sunshine every morning.

Orange – the workshop / tool-room where we keep the gardening tools reminds us of the fruit we grow.

Purple – for the alliteration, our personal storage room!

The good news is that our guests should only have to recall two or three of these colours and in most cases they will generally use the red door when arriving at or leaving the villa.

Colour Blindness

When I was taking the photograph to illustrate this piece I wondered what a colour blind person would experience.

Red Green Colour Blindness

Predominantly found only in men. The gene that leads to this form of colour blindness is found in the X chromosome. This condition affects approximately 7% of the male population.

Blue Colour Blindness

Often referred to as blue yellow colour blindness. Extremely rare, so rare it affects only 5% of colour blind people. The chance of having blue colour blindness is equal in both men and women. The gene, found on chromosome 7, is shared equally by men and women and a mutation of this specific gene is responsible.

This is probably the least challenging piece of work to utilise the ideas of one of my heroes. But it does have the benefit of making me smile and that’s no bad thing!

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