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Re: Screen reader support for PDF forms


From: Birkir RĂșnar Gunnarsson
Date: Jan 26, 2011 5:51PM


Is that because of lack of accessible interface support on non-Windows
platforms, or is it because screen readers on other platforms have not
taken advantage of existing accessibility interfaces or APIs?
I actually got the pdf reader on OSX to read documents just fine, not
any special marked up text (links, lists, headings) but it could read
just the plain text.
Tomorrow I will post specific apps I tried it with, my colleague
actually ran those two tests and I want to confirm with him to have
the precise name and version along with the O.S. tested.

On 1/26/11, Andrew Kirkpatrick < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:
> John,
> Support for accessibility via the accessibility API is essentially for
> Windows alone with Reader presently.
> Thanks,
> Andrew Kirkpatrick
> Group Product Manager, Accessibility
> Adobe Systems
> http://twitter.com/awkawk
> http://blogs.adobe.com/accessibility
> -----Original Message-----
> [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of John E Brandt
> Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2011 4:35 PM
> To: 'WebAIM Discussion List'
> Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Screen reader support for PDF forms
> Birkir,
> Curious, what did you use to read PDF forms on the Mac OS with VoiceOver?
> As I recall - and this was several years ago - the free Adobe Acrobat Reader
> (probably version 9) did not work with VoiceOver. In fairness, this was true
> of many/most non-native applications (and even a bunch of Apple's own
> applications) The only way to simply read a PDF on the Mac was with Preview.
> But I'm fairly certain that it reads the content as simple text and not as
> tagged content. This might explain why you had poor results with PDF forms.
> I know that there is a new Adobe Acrobat Reader (version X) but I have not
> downloaded it. So I don't know if it works with VoiceOver.
> Has anyone tried Acrobat Reader X on the Mac with VoiceOVer? Andrew, any
> word on how Acrobat Reader X works with VoiceOver?
> John E. Brandt
> www.jebswebs.com
> 207-622-7937
> Augusta, Maine, USA
> -----Original Message-----
> [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Birkir RĂșnar
> Gunnarsson
> Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2011 3:33 PM
> To: WebAIM Discussion List
> Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Screen reader support for PDF forms
> Mike
> Before Hal v12 there was no pdf form support (no pdf support except reading
> the text in a document. Headings, lists and links were not recognized in the
> document at all, as of v12 this is no longer the case, though I cannot speak
> to specifically how good the support is, if you send me a form you have in
> mind I can test it with Hal v12).
> I tested pdf with Orca, it did absolutely nothing (this is something I did
> last summer, I can dig up precise software and version details), did not
> even read the text in the pdf document I tested (I tested with Milestone mp3
> player user guide from Bones, accessible pdf document, and a static pdf
> form, I can send you the document off list if you want).
> VoiceOver did basically just as badly.
> That was on a MacMini, OSX, I think 10.6, whatever was the latest available
> version in July 2010.
> We do this screen reader comparison tests now annually and I will give a
> presentation on the set up and results at this year's CSUN conference.
> After that I will send the full report out and would appreciate any feedback
> or comments.
> There may easily be mistakes there, especially in the open source field
> where one pdf reader could perform a lot better than another, or some secret
> settings have to be configured to drastically improve access.
> Cheers
> -B
> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> I know that PDF forms when built properly are well supported using
>> NVDA and JFW. Even dynamic forms are now well supported in current
>> releases of those screen readers.
>> How well are they supported with other screen readers such as Apple's
>> VoiceOver, Dolphin's HAL/SuperNova, GW Micro's Window Eyes or Orca?
>> Does anyone have a matrix that lists what is supported by which
>> versions? I am particularly interested in dynamic feature support such
>> as branching logic and expandable text fields.
>> Mike Moore