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RE: [WebAIM] More data on accesskeys (New article written Nov. 1)

From: John Foliot <foliot@wats.ca>
Date: Thu, 2 Nov 2006 09:31:08 -0800
To: "'WebAIM Discussion List'" <webaim-forum@list.webaim.org>
Cc: <blindwebbers@yahoogroups.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>, <gawds_discuss@yahoogroups.com>
Message-ID: <002301c6fea4$af1f8d10$7d8e40ab@Piglet>

Alastair Campbell wrote:
> 
> It's a shame, any change to how accesskeys work now is going to cause
> conflict, I was really hoping they would be deprecated in favour of
> the type of mechanisms Jon Gunderson et al have been working up:
> http://www.w3.org/TR/aria-roadmap/#landmarks   
> 

Alastair,

AFAIK, accesskey is still slated to be deprecated in XHTML 2, but what we
are dealing with here is HTML/XHTML today, and sadly accesskey is still in
that spec.

XHTML 2 will deprecated accesskey in favor of the access element, which will
take attributes such as @role and @ key (to which I am extremely concerned:
if you have not already seen my piece "Access + Key Still Equals Accesskey"
[http://www.wats.ca/show.php?contentid=47], I urge you to do so: the
non-response by the Draft Authors to my concerns and specific questions is
exactly the kind of elitist un-responsiveness that TBL alludes to in his
recent posting [http://dig.csail.mit.edu/breadcrumbs/node/166] and Joe Clark
rants about [http://blog.fawny.org/2006/10/28/tbl-html] </steps down from
soapbox>.)

The work that Jon et al are doing in this space is leading the way, although
sadly none of it currently validates to a formal grammar... Is there anybody
out there comfortable enough to hack a modified DTD together so that @role
could validate today?  The one supplied with the example(s) does not (at
least, I cannot show it to using both W3C and WDG online validation tools).

To me, the long and the short of it is this is just one more reason why
authors should not be deciding how end-users will approach and interact with
the content.  Prof. Gunderson's examples show how by declaring the intent,
but leaving the mapping to the end user, we have real and beneficial
usability/accessibility.  In the immediate future, I continue to advocate
non-use of the accesskey, but if/when required/desired to use solutions
similar to Gez's PHP and AP scripts (and there are others out there) that
give the mapping control to the end user, where it rightly belongs.

JF
Received on Thursday, 2 November 2006 17:31:32 UTC

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