RE: Accessible Dynamic Menus (was: Re: [w3c-wai-ig] <none>)

Hi James, Good to see you today and yesterday at AIR University,, a really incredible Web Accessibility
Training with experts from around the world, for hundreds of University web
professionals in the area. Two days. Incredible running repeating concurrent
sessions. I know of nothing like it.

Your example of accessible JavaScript menus that you presented at AIR
University,, is
impressive. And it is technically accessible. But I am surprised (not
really) that none here have pointed out that the menus are not "usable." The
problem is that there are (about) 12 main menu items, 133 submenu items and
15 sub-sub menu items. A keyboard user must tab through EVERY ONE - each
MENU and its submenu and its submenu in order to get to a desired item. 

It really is incredible that any accessibility/usability professional would
look twice at a system that requires tabbing through 160 items to find where
you want to go - anything but a usability/accessibility disaster.

Well it works from the keyboard. How about mouse keys.

508 Web Accessibility Tutorial
"Constructing Accessible Web Sites:"

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf
Of James Craig
Sent: Wednesday, May 28, 2003 12:26 PM
To: Dwight H. Barbour;
Subject: Accessible Dynamic Menus (was: Re: [w3c-wai-ig] <none>)

Dwight H. Barbour wrote:
> No Java, But it uses JavaScript.
> Tested in Opera without JavaScript turned on and the menus do not work.
> On Tue, 27 May 2003 19:17:47 -0500, "Section 508.US" <>
> said:

Alright, I get a chance to defend my own creation. First of all, what 
version of Opera are you using? Some implementations of that browser 
(Opera 5 and 6, specifically) are quite lacking in DOM compliancy but 
the menus work just fine in Opera 7 for Windows.

Also, the menus are designed for a site where accessing any of the top 
links will access a page that has all the sub-level links as the content 
of the page. Try the same files on one of the site servers. Access the 
top-level links (With or without JavaScript) and you'll see what I mean.

I set these up to not be reliant on either CSS or JavaScript. Without 
CSS, you get a full set of nested unordered lists. Without JavaScript 
(or with a sub-standard browser like Opera 6 or Netscape 4), you can 
still access the top-level links and get to the sub-level content from 
those pages.

There are still a few accessibility features yet to be implemented. For 
example, a "skip nav" link will be used, and perhaps some accesskey 
attributes for the top-level links. I also plan to add a "close 
sub-menu" feature that will be explained on the accessibility page of 
that site if these menus ever go live.

I intend to have an explanation page documenting all this when I finish 
them, but I'm not quite there yet. Please let me know if you have any 
more feedback on the example listed.

James Craig


Received on Thursday, 29 May 2003 22:53:16 UTC