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Re: Rethinking the necessities of ARIA landmark role "main" and HTML5 <main> element

From: Sailesh Panchang <sailesh.panchang@deque.com>
Date: Sun, 24 Mar 2013 17:30:43 -0400
Message-ID: <CAJi9Cqoe3eWUR1wwvvp1FfTOn4dWXfwmR8X4erspf-iKdu-7Rw@mail.gmail.com>
To: Steve Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Cc: Bryan Garaventa <bryan.garaventa@whatsock.com>, Charles McCathie Nevile <chaals@yandex-team.ru>, Ian Yang <ian@invigoreight.com>
With reference to Bryan's comment re. JAWS' bug in dealing with form
controls within role=main region and Steve's response with a fix at

I think it is a bad idea to use role=form within role=main simply to
fix a JAWS'bug.
The issue should be taken up with FS and FS should resolve the issue.
It makes no sense to code
<form role="form" ...>
That's not  what WAI-ARIA is meant for.
The FORM element has existed since the dawn of HTML, so why is
role=form required?
Also Refer: http://www.w3.org/WAI/AR/comments/details?comment_id=399
Sailesh Panchang

On 3/24/13, Steve Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Bryan,
> this is a known BUG in JAWS, here is a work around for it:
> Annoying JAWS 13 + IE 9 ARIA landmark role on div element
> bug<http://www.html5accessibility.com/tests/div-landmark.html>
> with regards
> --
> SteveF
> HTML 5.1 <http://www.w3.org/html/wg/drafts/html/master/>
> <http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html>
> On 24 March 2013 02:40, Bryan Garaventa
> <bryan.garaventa@whatsock.com>wrote:
>> **
>> I have experimented with role="main" in the recent past as well, and it's
>> come up in obscure ways with various clients in the last year as well
>> when
>> trying to diagnose weird accessibility issues  regarding ARIA.
>> I understand the theory, and I even tried to implement role="main" on
>> WhatSock.com, but the results were not as good as I hoped from what the
>> intended purpose of the role states it to be.
>> Here is a simple example of this regarding form fields contained within a
>> region with role="main".
>> <div role="main">
>> <form>
>> <input type="text" title="Full name" />
>> <input type="text" title="Email address" />
>> </form>
>> </div>
>> If you are in Forms Mode in JAWS 13 when using IE, you will here
>> "Landmark
>> Region" in addition to every form field label spoken when pressing Tab,
>> and in JAWS 14 you will hear "Region", which is distracting and quite
>> annoying when dealing with forms that involve more than twenty fields in
>> number for instance.
>> I've also noticed strange behaviors when other roles are nested within
>> role="main", as well as when interactive widgets are present such as
>> role="tablist", and many others. Some of the behaviors I've seen include
>> the automatic announcement of everything contained within the region of
>> role="main" when dynamic content changes occur within a localized section
>> of another widget also contained within this broad container.
>> So, after I added role="main" to WhatSock.com, I found all of these
>> issues, and immediately removed it.
>> Since then, I'm not a fan of adding attributes just because there is a
>> specification that promotes it, without performing comprehensive testing
>> to
>> verify it beforehand.
>> This is something I recommend everyone do, because I have diagnosed many
>> website issues that are directly a result of developers adding ARIA
>> attributes to their markup without have any idea how it will impact
>> screen
>> reader interaction and feedback.
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> *From:* Steve Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
>> *To:* Charles McCathie Nevile <chaals@yandex-team.ru>
>> *Cc:* Ian Yang <ian@invigoreight.com> ; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>> *Sent:* Saturday, March 23, 2013 7:14 PM
>> *Subject:* Re: Rethinking the necessities of ARIA landmark role "main"
>> and HTML5 <main> element
>> Hi Chaals,
>> thanks for the detailed reply to Ian, the apparent terseness of my own
>> reply was based on the knowledge of Ian's (Yang) being involved in much
>> of
>> the discussion[1] that occurred on the WHATWG list on the subject, and in
>> fact being the person who triggered my renewed interest in the
>> development
>> of the feature.
>> >My conclusions are that differences in the WHAT-WG version are silly,
>> > but
>> the element as specified in the HTML specification and as commonly
>> >implemented is actually very useful.
>> It should be noted that the differences (with the W3C definition) in how
>> main has been defined in the whatwg spec have not been ignored. I have
>> sought to understand what the reasoning for those differences is [2] and
>> also asked Ian (Hixie) directly on IRC, but have not as yet received any
>> response.
>> [1]
>> http://www.w3.org/Search/Mail/Public/search?type-index=public-whatwg-archive&index-type=t&keywords=maincontent&search=Search
>> [2]
>> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-whatwg-archive/2013Feb/0172.html
>> with regards
>> --
>> SteveF
>> HTML 5.1 <http://www.w3.org/html/wg/drafts/html/master/>
>> <http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html>
>> On 24 March 2013 00:33, Charles McCathie Nevile
>> <chaals@yandex-team.ru>wrote:
>>> On Sat, 23 Mar 2013 16:21:17 +0100, Steve Faulkner <
>>> faulkner.steve@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Hi Ian,
>>>> Ian Hixie, he mentioned that the existence of the ARIA landmark role
>>>>> "main" is a mistake
>>> I've seen this assertion from him, and discussions about why. I am
>>> unconvinced by the arguments I have seen. I also haven't seen anything
>>> that
>>> reasonably contradicts the data Steve produced to justify the element.
>>> My
>>> discussions with web developers, from small-shop devs to things like
>>> Yandex
>>> with millions of users across dozens or hundreds of services suggest
>>> that
>>> the element makes sense.
>>>  That's very thought-provoking
>>> Well, it might be. The original proposal was thought-provoking enough to
>>> also provoke me into reading other people's thoughts and research and
>>> even
>>> doing a small amount of my own. My conclusions are that differences in
>>> the
>>> WHAT-WG version are silly, but the element as specified in the HTML
>>> specification and as commonly implemented is actually very useful.
>>> The fact that Ian disagrees with something isn't enough to be
>>> though-provoking on its own. He is clever, and often right. But not
>>> about
>>> everything. Some of his insights into accessibility are very helpful,
>>> and
>>> some of them just suggest that he knows more about other aspects of
>>> HTML.
>>> both role=main and now <main> are part of the web platform and
>>>> interoperably implemented across browsers and assistive technology
>>> Yes, and this happened very quickly. That doesn't necessarily mean they
>>> are a good idea, because sometimes the wisdom of the crowd isn't quite
>>> as
>>> clever as we hope, but it suggests that a large proportion of the
>>> relevant
>>> decision makers, who on balance are usually quite smart and quite
>>> thoughtful about what they add to the web, are convinced that the
>>> element
>>> makes sense.
>>> A major reason for the element is to replace the "skip to main content"
>>> links that are all over the web, for accessibility purposes. While the
>>> use
>>> of those links is a terrible bit of architecture (they only work if you
>>> start from the top of the page and navigate with the keyboard, etc etc)
>>> they are deemed useful enough to include on all kinds of websites whose
>>> designs have been through multiple rounds of usability testing to ensure
>>> they make sense in practice.
>>> There have been discussions in all kinds of places. Since Steve was the
>>> big proponent, he can probably provide pointers by digging through his
>>> email archive, but I suggest you look at the mail archives of the W3C's
>>> HTML Working Group[1], the W3C's HTML Accessibility Task Force[2] in
>>> particular. You can also look at things like IRC logs, blog posts, and
>>> so
>>> on. A Yandex search [3] shows a handful of interesting perspectives in
>>> blogs and articles, too.
>>> [1]
>>> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/**Public/public-html/<http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/>
>>> [2]
>>> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/**Public/public-html-a11y/<http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html-a11y/>
>>> [3] http://yandex.com/yandsearch?**text=html5+main+element&clid=**
>>> 1823140&lr=213<http://yandex.com/yandsearch?text=html5+main+element&clid=1823140&lr=213>
>>> Note that this is just my personal opinion, and I am not always right :)
>>> cheers
>>> Chaals
>>> --
>>> Charles McCathie Nevile - Consultant (web standards) CTO Office, Yandex
>>>       chaals@yandex-team.ru         Find more at http://yandex.com
Received on Sunday, 24 March 2013 21:31:10 UTC

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