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Re: [STYLEGUIDE] Tab Panel discussion

From: David Bolter <david.bolter@utoronto.ca>
Date: Thu, 31 May 2007 15:31:14 -0400
Message-ID: <465F2282.4070500@utoronto.ca>
To: Becky Gibson <Becky_Gibson@notesdev.ibm.com>
CC: wai-xtech@w3.org

Hi Becky,

Sorry for the delay, I'm finally getting around to commenting on all 
your points here:

Becky Gibson wrote:
> There is a proposal for tab panel behavior in the wiki [1]. The style 
> guide working group has discussed tab pane to some extent and I believe we 
> agree that the panel would become active when the tab receives focus.   I 
> updated the key behavior section with the following information:
>
> tab - only the active tab is in the tab order. The user reaches the tabbed 
> panel component by pressing the tab key until the active tab title 
> receives focus. 
>   
Sounds good to me. Other elements, such as radio button groups, already 
work this way.
> left arrow - with focus on a tab, pressing the left arrow will move focus 
> to the previous tab in the tab list and activate that tab. Pressing the 
> left arrow when the focus is on the first tab in the tab list will move 
> focus and activate the last tab in the list.
>   
Again sounds good and mirrors radio button behavior... so we have precedent.
> right arrow - with focus on a tab, pressing the right arrow will move 
> focus to the next tab in the tab list and activate that tab. Pressing the 
> right arrow when the focus is on the last tab in the tab list will move 
> focus to and activate the first tab in the list.
>  
>   
ibid.
> ctrl-up arrow -with focus anywhere within the tab panel, pressing ctrl-up 
> arrow will move focus to the tab for that panel. This is not standard 
> behavior - is this something we want to implement? Is it necessary if we 
> provide a mechanism to change the active tab? Similar to 
> ctrl-pageup/pagedown in Firefox to switch tabs?
>  
>   
I vote that we should just provide the mechanism for changing the active 
tab. I was thinking of ctrl + right/left arrow (since it would just add 
a ctrl modifier to the arrow based tab-focused navigation), but since FF 
has the ctrl + pgup/pgdown behavior, probably best to reuse.

> alt-del - When deletion is allowed, with focus anywhere within the tab 
> panel, pressing alt-del will delete the current tab and tab panel from the 
> tabbed interface control. If additional tabs remain in the tabbed 
> interface, focus goes to the next tab in the tab list. An alternative to 
> providing a keystroke to close a tab is to provide a context menu that is 
> associated with the tab title. When focus is on the tab, pressing 
> shift-F10 or pressing the right mouse button will open a context menu with 
> the close choice 
>
>   
In any event I think for mouse users the context menu is a plus.

> NEW ctrl-pageup - When focus is inside of a tab panel, pressing 
> ctrl-pageup moves focus to the tab of the previous tab in the tab list and 
> activates that tab. When focus is in the first tab panel in the tab list, 
> pressing ctrl-pageup will move focus to the last tab in the tab list and 
> activate that tab. 
> NEW ctrl-pagedown - When focus is inside of a tab panel, pressing 
> ctrl-pagedown moves focus to the tab of the next tab in the tab list and 
> activates that tab. When focus is in the last tab panel in the tab list, 
> pressing ctrl-pageup will move focus to the first tab in the tab list and 
> activate that tab. 
> Regarding ctrl-pageup/pagedown. This is currently implement in Firefox to 
> move between browser tabs. Firefox also supports ctrl-tab and 
> ctrl-shift-tab to move between tabs. Internet Explorer 7 also uses 
> ctrl-tab and ctrl-shift-tab. I (Becky) see advantages to using 
> ctrl-pageup/pagedown as the keys to change tabs since it is a recognizable 
> keystroke to at least Firefox users and is also supported by the Windows 
> operating system to move between panels in a tabbed dialog.
OK I agree with this notion... reuse existing tab navigation keystrokes. 
Cognitive workload is finite for most mortals.

>  The problem is 
> that if the user is within a tabbed interface control on a Web page, they 
> can not easily switch browser tabs without first moving focus outside of 
> the tabbed interface control. This may be acceptable. The other issue is 
> if the entire Web page is a tabbed interface control - in that case the 
> user could not ever switch browser tabs unless the control on the Web page 
> ignored the ctlr-pageup/pagedown keypress (and thus letting the browser 
> access it) when the first or last tab was reached. 
> I am looking for feedback for the last three proposals: using ctrl-up 
> arrow to move focus from within the tab panel back to the tab; Using 
> alt-del or a context menu to delete a tab from the tab list; using 
> ctrl-pageup and ctrl-pagedown to move between keys. 
> I prefer to implement  ctrl-pageup and ctrl-pagedown to move between keys 
> and to not implement ctrl-up arrow behavior.  I also prefer the idea of 
> using a context menu to provide a close or delete option for tabs rather 
> than inventing the new alt-del key sequence.   Are there other suggestions 
> or feedback? 
>   
The context menu approach is cool... but we need to make sure it is 
discoverable.
cheers,
David
> thanks.
>
> [1] http://weba11y.com/styleguide/index.php?title=Tab_Panel
>
> Becky Gibson
> Web Accessibility Architect
>                                                        
> IBM Emerging Internet Technologies
> 5 Technology Park Drive
> Westford, MA 01886
> Voice: 978 399-6101; t/l 333-6101
> Email: gibsonb@us.ibm.com
>
>
>
>   
Received on Thursday, 31 May 2007 19:31:32 GMT

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