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RE: accessible drop-down menus

From: Bryan Garaventa <bryan.garaventa@ssbbartgroup.com>
Date: Sun, 29 May 2016 04:37:53 +0000
To: Roger Hudson <rhudson@usability.com.au>, 'Bryan Garaventa' <bryan.garaventa@whatsock.com>, 'WAI Interest Group' <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <SN1PR0301MB1981009B8DC135B72E65CA7298440@SN1PR0301MB1981.namprd03.prod.outlook.com>
"With your menu, would it cause any problems if rather than switching between tabindex=-1 and tabindex=0 for the main navigation items (depending on which has focus), they all just use the tabindex=0 attribute so that the user can tab directly from one main nav item to the next?"

Unfortunately this is one of those things that seems to be a logical problem for some, where the logical fix then causes problems for others.

So in the case of tabbing, the feedback received using ARIA Menubar and Menu roles by non-sighted screen reader users is that with every tab press it sounds like the user is tabbing to a different menu, making it impossible for the blind user to differentiate one menu construct versus several in the same area, which leads to confusion and user error.

This is the primary reason why these roles, such as 'menubar', 'menu', 'tablist', 'radiogroup', 'listbox', 'tree', and others are meant to have one tab stop, because they map to the same control types on the platform OS that provide the same keyboard paradigm for their users, meaning that something that sounds like a Menu needs to act exactly like a Menu, otherwise it causes confusion when it doesn't.

Also, when everybody programs these controls to behave differently, there is no way for any end user on the web to understand how these controls are supposed to act on any webpage, because nothing is consistent.

Consistently followed and reliably programmed role and keyboard design patterns would go a long way towards helping others to better understand these controls and how to use them.

Recently we published a couple of articles regarding ARIA Tabs that illustrate why these distinctions are important.
E.G
Danger! Testing Accessibility with real people - Medium
https://medium.com/@LeonieWatson/danger-testing-accessibility-with-real-people-4515f72db648#.k0ng5llrc
>From HTML to ARIA Tabs, A Travelog | HackPoets
https://hackpoets.wordpress.com/2016/05/10/from-html-to-aria-tabs-a-travelog/

Hopefully this helps to explain the logic a bit.

All the best,
Bryan



Bryan Garaventa
Accessibility Fellow
SSB BART Group, Inc.
bryan.garaventa@ssbbartgroup.com
415.624.2709 (o)
www.SSBBartGroup.com

From: Roger Hudson [mailto:rhudson@usability.com.au]
Sent: Saturday, May 28, 2016 2:25 PM
To: 'Bryan Garaventa' <bryan.garaventa@whatsock.com>; 'WAI Interest Group' <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Subject: RE: accessible drop-down menus

Thanks Bryan,

This example is very nice and seems keyboard and screen reader accessible to me. It is similar (but not the same) as the Canadian Gov Web Experience Toolkit Working Examples Menu (https://wet-boew.github.io/v4.0-ci/demos/menu/menu-en.html)

It appears your menu follows the DHTML guidelines which suggest that only the first (or just one) of the main navigation items should be accessible with the tab key, with the others accessed via the arrow keys (i.e. more follows the standard paradigm used with computer applications such as Window Explorer). However, from my testing with keyboard users (with and without a screen reader) I find that a significant proportion expect to be able to tab to all the main navigation items in a web page, and become a little disorientated when this doesn't happen. And in some cases, either they don't think to use the arrow keys or don't know they can be used for this purpose.

With your menu, would it cause any problems if rather than switching between tabindex=-1 and tabindex=0 for the main navigation items (depending on which has focus), they all just use the tabindex=0 attribute so that the user can tab directly from one main nav item to the next?

Thanks,

Roger

From: Bryan Garaventa [mailto:bryan.garaventa@whatsock.com]
Sent: Sunday, 29 May 2016 3:27 AM
To: 'Roger Hudson'; 'WAI Interest Group'
Subject: RE: accessible drop-down menus

The following does this.
https://github.com/accdc/aria-menubar
All the best,
Bryan

From: Roger Hudson [mailto:rhudson@usability.com.au]
Sent: Friday, May 27, 2016 11:45 PM
To: 'WAI Interest Group' <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org<mailto:w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>>
Subject: accessible drop-down menus

Hi
I am looking for examples of main site navigation systems where a main (top) navigation item in the menu is able to link to a landing (section) page, and open a drop-down menu with sub-menu choices. Can anyone suggest examples that are both intuitive to use with the keyboard and accessible with a screen reader.

Thanks,
Roger

Roger Hudson
Web Usability
Mobile: 0405 320 014
Phone: 02 9568 1535
Web: www.usability.com.au<http://www.usability.com.au>
Blog: www.dingoaccess.com<http://www.dingoaccess.com>
Twitter: http://twitter.com/rogerhudson
Email: rhudson@usability.com.au<mailto:rhudson@usability.com.au>
Received on Sunday, 29 May 2016 04:38:26 UTC

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