W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > June 2007

Re: Table accessibility (was Re: headers attribute)

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Mon, 4 Jun 2007 10:22:19 -0700
Message-Id: <3E32D92A-952E-424F-846F-839155F8EB15@apple.com>
Cc: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
To: Leif Halvard Silli <lhs@malform.no>


On Jun 4, 2007, at 5:32 AM, Leif Halvard Silli wrote:

>
> On 2007-06-04 03:13:10 +0200 Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> wrote:
>
>>> Since VoiceOver only works with Safari,
>>
>> VoiceOver can work with any app, but I don't think any other  
>> browser  exports
>> the HTML-specific accessibility interfaces yet. I think it   
>> actually works
>> with any WebKit-based browser though.
>>
>>>   - how much is this VoiceOver's fault, and how much is it  
>>> Safari's  fault?
>>
>> Not really a relevant question. We cooperate to get things  
>> working  and try
>> to support more over time.
>
> I meant it in a kind of literal sense, and not the people behind  
> either Safari or VoiceOver. I am assuming that once something is  
> supported - or «given attention» - in the visual GUA (WebKit), then  
> the chance increases that even the AT UA can make use of it also.

That's not really the way it works. The VoiceOver team decides what  
to expose, and if necessary we make changes in Safari to support it  
(though preferrably they can do much of what they need to without  
Safari changes).

>>>   - can VoiceOver make sense of things which Safari does not  
>>> make  sense of?
>>
>> Safari (WebKit actually) exports a tree of "accessibility objects" to
>> VoiceOver which does the actual presentation, so some features  
>> may  require
>> support on both ends, but some can be implemented just in   
>> VoiceOver using
>> existing interfaces. As far as I know, no one has  tried to do the  
>> work for
>> table header association yet. I could double- check though.
>
> Does VoiceOver make use of the speech module of CSS?

VoiceOver does use different tones and speaking speeds at times, but  
it does not support aural CSS.

> For instance, it could seem natural to present the cell  
> associations (which in HTML4 is not limited to header associations)  
> with another voice than the text of the actual cell one are  
> reading. Then users could fast get an overview of who the HEADERS  
> cells are, (without having to listen to TH cell coordinates etc).  
> Thus the user could hear the associated header-like cells in a  
> different tone from the the cell he is actually reading.As such,  
> headers should be available for voice styling via CSS.
>
> And then, if you, make it availbable for voice styling via CSS, it  
> would also  be fitting to make it possible to style HEADERS= for  
> visual browsers as well.
>
> Now, I am of course aware of the fact that you could make  
> a ::headers «cell-lector» in CSS even if you do not cut the very  
> headers= attribute. But it does not sound as if that is your  
> viewpoint.

Interesting idea but I don't think it would be especially helpful to  
VoiceOver in improving table support.

Regards,
Maciej
Received on Monday, 4 June 2007 17:22:42 UTC

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