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RE: Identifying results with color

From: Joe Chidzik <joe.chidzik@abilitynet.org.uk>
Date: Wed, 10 Apr 2013 10:04:05 -0500
To: Jan Eric Hellbusch <hellbusch@2bweb.de>, "w3c-wai-ig@w3.org" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <4602D70D47EBE642A2B85590FFB33249AAD7373FA4@34093-MBX-C09.mex07a.mlsrvr.com>
> Hi all,
> in an application with multiple search possibilities, search results in a document are
> highlighted by different colors. In this particular application it will be possible to
> search for over 10 strings simultaneously and they will all be highlighted in
> different colors. The result can be confusing to anybody, but currently the
> accessibility is being discussed.
> The preliminary solution will be to associate every color with a number, i.e. if a user
> searches for "quick" and then "brown" then the document may extended by
> numbers:
> "The 1quick 2brown fox jumped, but didn't catch up with the 1quick 2brown dog."
> 1 might be blue and 2 a different color.

If I understand the functionality you've explained, I can search - this email, for example - for multiple different words. These words are highlighted in different colours depending on the word used. So 'email' may be highlighted in green, 'search' may be highlighted in blue - is this what you mean? And you are trying to convey the meaning of these different highlight colours to users who may not be able to distinguish between the colours (but who can, presumably, distinguish highlighted from non-highlighted words)

If so, the word itself would seem to be the distinguishing feature - A quick glance at the page and I see lots of blues and greens around the page indicating highlighted results, but even if I can't distinguish these shades from one another  (but can see that certain words are highlighted), all I need to is read the highlighted words to distinguish them - I don't need the number 1 prefixed to the word 'search' to tell the difference between that and another highlighted search result 'email' as I can simply read the words. In which case, I don't see that you need do anything involving numbers or other identifying features.

To semantically identify these results as being highlighted, for screenreader users for instance, you can use the HTML5 <mark> element, presumably with different classes for different search result terms. 

Hope I've not misunderstood!

Received on Wednesday, 10 April 2013 15:04:46 UTC

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