Keyboard focus indicators

Jonsm@aol.com
Fri, 18 Nov 1994 13:50:04 -0500


Date: Fri, 18 Nov 1994 13:50:04 -0500
From: Jonsm@aol.com
Message-Id: <941118135002_2302319@aol.com>
To: www-html@www0.cern.ch
Subject: Keyboard focus indicators

How is keyboard focus to check/radio buttons supposed to be indicated within
HTML forms? The standard MS Windows method is to supply a highlight box
around the associated text to the right of the check or radio button. I have
checked several browsers and they are not doing this. While using these
broswers I have found it is very difficult to tell when these fields have the
input focus. Another effect of the Windows convention is to provide a larger
target to click on rather than a tiny checkbox.

A typical construct is:
<LI> <INPUT TYPE="checkbox" NAME="topping"  VALUE="pepperoni">Pepperoni.

The problem is that there is no SGML indication about what text to frame with
the focus rectangle. You can guess but you may get it wrong since it is not
always clear where to end the focus indicator. This is especially true when
the checkboxes are standalone without being in a list construct. Listboxes
have a much better system where the OPTION elements define the elements in
the list.

Any suggestions on how to deal with this?

Jon Smirl, jonsm@aol.com