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Re: ARIA for main navigation bar


From: Jennifer Sutton
Date: Apr 23, 2015 3:52PM

I will respond but first want to emphasize two points:
1. I was not involved with the development this tutorial, so I
cannot speak to the thinking behind the recommendations
2. I speak for myself as *one* screen reader user, from my personal
perspective, only.

Particularly in menus, it seems to me that there *is* a difference
when using ARIA with a screen reader (and I am speaking only of
desktop, here -- personally, I don't tend to use the Web much on my phone).

I tend to think that a flyout menu, such as the tutorial describes,
more typically represents what would be needed on a Web site;
whereas, using the ARIA menubar would be more for a Web
*application*. I guess the simplest way I can put it is that even if
something looks like a menubar, is it really *acting* like one?

One of the things that I find with ARIA (and perhaps it's with the
mis-application of it) is that one can spend a lot of time going in
and out of application mode to make selections (with JFW, for
example). There are absolutely cases where this is necessary, but I
am not convinced that menus are necessarily one of them, except when
the Web-based product is working like software.

I'm not sure this helps, much.

My last point would be that when I'm navigating a menu, I want to get
where I'm going (and figure that out) as quickly as possible, and I
find that over-ARIA-fication can slow me down.


At 01:22 PM 4/23/2015, you wrote:
>Thanks, Jennifer, so glad the WAI is working on tutorials like this.
>Great to see this guidance. The tutorial indicates that we should be
>using a "flyout menu" to build navigation. Thus my confusion.
>Functionally is there a reason to use a flyout menu instead of a web
>application menu for navigation? I would think that if the web
>application menu delivers the same functionality for a web page,
>that it wouldn't matter to the end user, or would it? Do screen
>readers or interactive features differ between the two on desktop
>and mobile? Are the ARIA features perceived differently by screen
>reader users? Or, could an ARIA role "menubar" function just as well
>as a flyout for simple navigation? Is it important semantically not
>to represent navigation as a menubar, or vice versa? Questions,
>questions, so many questions. Best, Judith On 4/23/15 12:13 PM,
>"Jennifer Sutton" < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote: >I'll just put in a
>quick plug for the menu-related tutorial from
>WAI: >http://www.w3.org/WAI/tutorials/menus/ > >I'm sure feedback,
>in the manner described, would be welcome. > >Jennifer > >