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Re: More on <CAPTION> element etc

From: Joshue O Connor <joshue.oconnor@cfit.ie>
Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2007 19:54:38 +0100
Message-ID: <467AC96E.7070506@cfit.ie>
To: Sander Tekelenburg <st@isoc.nl>
Cc: public-html@w3.org

Sander Tekelenburg wrote:
> My impression is that the explanation is in the name, "screen reader". Indeed
> you'd think a talking browser would act as you say, but it seems that it is a
> relatively recent thing that screen readers look at the actual HTML
> themselves. The technology seems to have started out as something that more
> or less literally 'reads the screen' -- take what is sent to the screen and
> convert that to speech or braille.

A screen reader is not talking browser but full fledged text to speech
software. For more Google the most popular like JAWS, WindowEyes, Orca etc.

> To provide a more intelligent presentation of content, such software can
> receive some interpretation of the HTML from the host OS, which it in turn
> gets from the GUA. 

Most Screen readers use the Off Screen Model (OSM) apart from Dolphins
Supernova which interacts directly with the DOM.

> But to be able to provide a truly useful presentation, such a tool will of
> course need to parse the HTML itself. As I understand it, that last approach
> has only recently started to happen in screen readers.

Again most use the OSM. A screen reader will also work in various modes
and for example only interact directly with the web page itself in what
JAWS refers to as 'Forms mode'. This is to navigate forms, enter text
into form fields etc. It is usually in virtual mode, which is the screen
reader using the OSM, which is in effect a virtualisation of the HTML
page the author creates. The better the HTML, the better the virtualisation.

Cheers

Josh
Received on Thursday, 21 June 2007 18:55:03 UTC

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