Re: [css3-ui] scoping 'nav-index' (or tabindex) for large document use cases

It is not clear why the same functionality is being proposed via
tabindex and CSS nav-index.
I even wonder if CSS should do this. After all, tab order relates to
document structure, meaningful reading / nav order and is concerned
with semantics. Hence it should be addressed by HTML and its
attributes not by CSS which, broadly speaking, addresses doc
presentation / appearance aspects.
And it will be very  confusing for developers as well as
QA/accessibility evaluation tools if similar features can be
implemented by tabindex in HTML and  nav-index in CSS.
Sailesh Panchang

On 11/20/11, Ojan Vafai <> wrote:
> FWIW, there's a proposal to extend tabindex with tabindexscope to address
> the same problem:
> I agree that if we're going to add nav-index, we should also address the
> scoping problem.
> On Sun, Nov 20, 2011 at 3:22 PM, L. David Baron <> wrote:
>> One of the issues that came up in the joint meeting between CSS and
>> WAI Protocols & Formats at TPAC (on October 31) was the 'nav-index'
>> property in .  (This is
>> the second of two messages (on different topics) to follow up on that
>> discussion.)
>> There was a brief discussion that both 'nav-index' and tabindex are
>> difficult for authors to use on large pages.  This was because of
>> the impression that one of the use cases is likely to be doing a
>> small amount of reordering of the tabbing order.  In particular, I
>> think the following two use cases may have been brought up:
>>  (1) The author wants to say that the tabbing order (sequential
>>  navigation order) should be assigned a certain way for large
>>  sections of the page, each of which contain many navigable items.
>>  For example, consider two div elements, each with a large number
>>  of links in it, where the author wants all of the elements in the
>>  second div to appear in the tabbing order before all of the
>>  elements in the first div.  This currently requires assigning
>>  tabindex, at a minimum, to all the tab-navigable elements in at
>>  least one of the divs, if not all the tab-navigable elements in
>>  the whole document.  It would be easier if there were a way to do
>>  this by applying styles only to the divs (and perhaps their
>>  container; see item (2)).
>>  (2) The author wants to say that the tabbing order (sequential
>>  navigation order) should be assigned a certain way for a group of
>>  elements within a specific container without having to specify the
>>  order for everything else around them.  Right now, saying that two
>>  links inside a div should be reached in the order opposite the
>>  default one, but should appear in-sequence relative to the content
>>  outside of the div, requires not only specifying 'nav-index' or
>>  tabindex on the two links, but also on all the other links in the
>>  document.
>> It seems useful to be able to address these use cases by assigning
>> properties or attributes to only a few elements rather than having
>> to do so globally.
>> (Note the desire for the tabbing order to be the way it is may be
>> the result of positions assigned in the style sheet, which is why
>> the tabbing order may belong in the style sheet as well.)
>> I don't recall concrete proposals for how to address these issues,
>> but they seem likely to be worth addressing in css3-ui.
>> -David
>> --
>> 𝄞   L. David Baron                  𝄂
>> 𝄢   Mozilla                    𝄂

Received on Sunday, 27 November 2011 00:10:26 UTC