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RE: advice sought for design of a search facility for a sub-sit e

From: <David.Cobb@rnib.org.uk>
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2002 09:28:14 -0000
Message-ID: <9B66BBD37D5DD411B8CE00508B69700FE7B312@pborolocal.rnib.org.uk>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Al,

I must apologize for the value names on the aforementioned example, the
radio button example have now been updated. The radio button example was put
together for the purpose of this mailing list, however, the original search
facility (as tested with users) did work to the extent of using the correct
values, etc...

What Liz is saying about not enough space with regards to radio buttons,
this is targeted at the fact that in the future we may want to incorporate
the facility to search other sub-sites as well. Hence, having 3 or 4 radio
buttons in a line could cause problems.

Isn't there a problem with surrounding an input field with labels?  What
happens when a browser doesn't support labels, does it ignore the input
field?

Regards

Dave Cobb

-----Original Message-----
From: Al Gilman [mailto:asgilman@iamdigex.net]
Sent: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 7:35 PM
To: EDixon@rnib.org.uk; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Re: advice sought for design of a search facility for a
sub-site


At 11:12 AM 2002-01-22 , EDixon@rnib.org.uk wrote:
>If you have a special area of a site that is distinct from the rest of the
>site for example a sub-site then what is the most usable and accessible way
>to display a search facility  and search results that offers a scoped
>search?
>
>Please refer to the following two links for examples of a search facility
>offering a scoped search:
>
><http://info.rnib.org.uk/script/wai/combo.html>http://info.rnib.org.uk/scr
ipt/wai/combo.html
>
><http://info.rnib.org.uk/script/wai/radio.html>http://info.rnib.org.uk/scr
ipt/wai/radio.html
>
>I have carried out an evaluation on both radio buttons searches and combo
>box search with 25 users and have found that the combo box search was shown
>to be easier to use for people with serious sight problems and learning
>difficulties. I have been informed that similar tests have been carried out
>with very different findings therefore any comments would be greatly
>appreciated.
>

AG:: I don't understand a couple of things.

But first, thank you for offering side by side code samples to make your
question concrete.  I hope lots of people will follow your example.

I don't understand how you did the user testing given that the radio button
code wouldn't work.  The two buttons have to have the same name and
different
values for the user selection to be communicated to the server.

So, with a few more fiddles, where the code sample says


      <td align="right"> <b>Search:</b> Online Shop
<input type="radio" name="radiobutton" value="radiobutton">
        RNIB
<input type="radio" name="radiobutton" value="radiobutton">

Consider instead it could say

      <td align="right"> <strong>Search:</strong>
<input id="abcd0001" type="radio" name="searchScopeConstraint"
value="storeOnly">
 <label for="abcd0001">Online Shop</label>
<input id="abcd0002" type="radio" name="searchScopeConstraint"
value="wholeRNIBsite">
<label for="abcd0002">RNIB</label>


My impression is that the combo box is on the whole the superior solution. 
Historically there was a feature added to Lynx to transform select elements
into series of radio buttons but this was in part because of the low level
of
communication between the curses screen and the DOS screen readers of the
day. 
In today's screen reader climate it would appear that is a step backwards
for
most users.

Contemporary screen readers generally deal effectively with the opening and
closing of the list box also known as select element if I understand
correctly.

The one thing to be warned about is to avoid using onChange events in the
select element.

A good model to benchmark your work against is the search interface to the
archives at Google Groups.  I am not saying mimic it in all particulars but
if
you start there you will be in close proximity to where you want to wind up.

I also don't understand the comment about how there is not code space for
enough labels for the radio buttons.  See the above example for one possible
coding.

However, see also Jim Thatchers's reasoning for why he suggests people
ignore
LABEL and just TITLE the elements with what you want to say.

[apologies for not providing links, it's just a matter of a little time with
Google but I don't have that time right now.]

Note I put the labels after the buttons as per visual convention.  According
to
Thatch's report this is not a problem, and the screen readers read at least
checkboxes that way regardless of the textual order.  This point is
currently
an open issue in the development of WCAG 2.0.  But the direction of change
is
to allow the visual order and ensure association of label and control via
the
markup.  The debate is about how fast or soon to change what the authors are
asked to do.

Al

>Thanks
>
>Liz Dixon
>iSys Analyst Evaluator, RNIB 
>
>
>
>
>- 
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NOTICE: The information contained in this email and any attachments is 
confidential and may be legally privileged. If you are not the 
intended recipient you are hereby notified that you must not use, 
disclose, distribute, copy, print or rely on this email's content. If 
you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender 
immediately and then delete the email and any attachments from your 
system.

RNIB has made strenuous efforts to ensure that emails and any 
attachments generated by its staff are free from viruses. However, it 
cannot accept any responsibility for any viruses which are 
transmitted. We therefore recommend you scan all attachments.

Please note that the statements and views expressed in this email 
and any attachments are those of the author and do not necessarily 
represent those of RNIB.

RNIB Registered Charity Number: 226227

Website: http://www.rnib.org.uk 
Received on Wednesday, 23 January 2002 04:26:22 GMT

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