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Re: Accessibility of complex HTML forms


From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Jun 26, 2003 2:18AM

On Thu, 26 Jun 2003, Gerard Corboz wrote:

> What I mean by a complex form is one that contains triggers or jumps. For
> example, the form might ask if the user has children. If the user answers
> yes then the user is expected to answer a large subset of questions related
> to their children. Alternatively if the user does not have children, they
> must skip to question xxx.

The obvious approach is precede the questions related to children by
something like

<div>If you have no children, please skip to
<a href="#q42">question 42</a>.</div>

> One way to handle the complex form example I described above is to use DHTML
> such that if a user answers yes to having children, the children related
> questions will dynamically appear.

That would make the functionality of the page depend on the settings of
the user's browser and its characteristics. It should at least be backed
up with equivalent server-side interaction, which means a lot of coding.
If the alternatives really depend on the data the user has filled in, then
such an arrangement could be practically necessary, but I would start from
the server-side processing - and consider adding faster client-side
operations only if feasible.

Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

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