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Re: Accessible methods for showing help on forms

From: <deborah.kaplan@suberic.net>
Date: Fri, 29 Jan 2010 12:29:23 -0500 (EST)
To: Maggie Thomson <Maggie@bunnyfoot.com>
cc: "w3c-wai-ig@w3.org" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.64.1001291225220.10510@suberic.net>
On Fri, 29 Jan 2010, Maggie Thomson wrote:
> I was wondering if I could open up a discussion about the most effective way to provide accessible context sensitive help on forms, at the input level. For example, an input for a form requests information to be submitted in a particular form, or there are rules around the information to be provided.

Are you willing to rely on users having modern accessibility
technologies? If so, WAI-ARIA alerts work very well. I've used
JavaScript-enabled help text in a div on the main page which
appears when a field is selected by mouse or keyboard, and given
it WAI-ARIA roles so that it would announce its presence to
screen readers. However, that will only work with recent
screen readers, and doesn't work the same in all of them.

Title text should be avoided for context-sensitive help. It's
inaccessible to keyboard-only users, and to many screen reader
users, depending on configuration.

Received on Friday, 29 January 2010 17:29:57 UTC

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