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Re: Are we really still talking about Access Keys?

From: Tina Holmboe <tina@greytower.net>
Date: Thu, 2 Jun 2005 18:21:28 +0200 (CEST)
Message-Id: <200506021621.j52GLSFU015087@asterix.andreasen.se>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

On  2 Jun, Access Systems wrote:

> but so far no one has been able to make one that "really works", oh
> one will work sometimes, with some software, on some sites but so far
> it is a non starter, except for the incessant rants

  Well ...

  It's really a case of two issues. First, the implementation. We can
  all[*] agree that so far a staggering number of user-agents have
  fouled up in how they implement access keys.

  The second issue, however, is one of content - and this is where
  things go wahooney-shaped. We could lobby to have a default set of
  link types defined so that an UA might give the user access to
  different links via built-in mechanisms.

  That would, however, restrict authors to a very limited set of links
  that could be expected to be recognised - hence access keys, which, in
  a way, are simply a means to label a link and allow UAs to pick up
  that label and give access via some sort of shortcut mechanism.

  After all, there is nothing to prevent an UA from - upon the user
  pressing, say, ctrl+space+9+AltGr - popping up a list of all links
  with an access key associated and then allow the user to navigate that
  list using the arrow keys, select one, and have it activated *or* list
  the links and activate when the user presses one of the now-displayed
  list of access keys. (There's an idea for the Firefox extension, if
  you want one).[**]

  At the moment, accesskey is a way for an author to make a decision
  regarding his/her content: THIS link is special, THAT link is not,
  THIS one is definetly special. No UA can make such a choice, unless we
  restrict content providers to an extreme subset of links.

  A serious implementation, however, could easily create any number of
  ways for users to access the access keys. They just ... *don't*.

  Atleast I *hope* so.

  Yes, browsers who follow Lynx' footsteps can also "list all links", but
  a "list all links with access key" functionality would give a shortcut
  to links which are important - or which the author *think* is
  important. No way we can avoid THAT conundrum. What such a function
  could do, however, is perhaps weed out all the "regular" links so
  that, say, navigation links become much easier to get to. A document
  with a couple of hundred links but only a few labelled with

 -    Tina Holmboe                    Greytower Technologies
   tina@greytower.net                http://www.greytower.net/
   [+46] 0708 557 905
Received on Thursday, 2 June 2005 16:21:30 UTC

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