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Re: accesskeys - standards for which keys do what?

From: Chris Kreussling <CHRIS.KREUSSLING@ny.frb.org>
Date: Wed, 27 Jan 1999 13:53:53 -0500
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Cc: w3c-wai-ua@w3.org
Message-id: <s6af1b50.098@ny.frb.org>
>>> <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org> (Alan Cantor) 01/27 1:04 PM >>>
There really should be standards for accesskeys, even if the standards
state which keys should NOT be used. ...
Here is a first go at a list of keys that I believe should be avoided for

Alt + A through Alt + Z
These are not access keys. These are potential implementations of access keys by a specific user agent. "An access key is a single character from the document character set." (http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/interact/forms.html#adef-accesskey) 

The HTML spec says nothing about HOW a user might trigger an access-key, such as using the [ALT] key in combination. HTML documents which specify access keys SHOULD NOT assume it's going to be an ALT combination (what if your user is on a Mac?). How access keys are made available to the user is - must be - a user-agent consideration, since only the user-agent can know on which platform its running and, therefore, what triggering options are available and how best to assign access keys to avoid conflicts with common usage on the user platofmr and within the agent itself.

Where I document access keys for the user, I give them the single-character, as specified in HTML spec, then append the disclaimer:

Not all Web browsers support access keys. To learn if you can use access keys with this form, please check your Web browser's documentation.

<author>Chris Kreussling</author>
<disclaimer>The views expressed are 
those of the author and do not necessarily 
reflect the position of the Federal Reserve 
Bank of New York or the Federal Reserve 
Received on Wednesday, 27 January 1999 13:58:51 UTC

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