WebAIM - Web Accessibility In Mind

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Date: Nov 6, 2013 9:37AM

Hi guys. Figured you would be a good place to hit up for ideas/hope.
Where I work wants to implement HandsOnTable handsontable examples area (link)as part of a page, using it to make editable excel-like spreadsheet looking tables. They asked me to evaluate its accessibility.
the output looked ok, it actually rendered as a table, and where there were column and row headers specified, they did have semantic markup.
But in terms of the editable part, the example pages are not looking shiny and great. For one, a screen reader user would have no idea this table was editable. Not one clue. It appears to be keyboard accessible, at least for editing in the basic sense, but I don't know how you do any of the stuff that sounds very mousey, i.e. dragging, context menus, any of those fun things. And why do I keep getting unceremoniously thrown into a seemingly invisible edit field?
On top of that, screen reader users are in for a frustrating ride. If you turn your virtual buffer off, then it seems to allow you to use the keyboard to move around, but you only know this if you have someone watching who has functioning eyes. I.e. you have no feedback about what cell you're in, what data is in the cell, whether you've deleted it, whether you actually have a flashing cursor, if you entered an invalid data type, all that good fun...and I'm sure autocomplete would be no picnic.
So...does anyone know if anyone has done any work with HandsOnTable to make it more awesome? I know it's open source, so anything is possible.
Or, could I direct developers to a place that would guide them in a speedier way to make this more accessible? Some are pretty familiar with accessibility, but some are pretty green in this area.
Thanks for any thoughts,