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Re: Tabindexes


From: Andrew Arch
Date: Dec 15, 2004 3:53PM


David's point is quite correct - you are creating a non-visual tab order and
potential confusing those who might be visual non-mouse users (a lot of
people with physical disabilities).

The other thing I noticed was the disappearance of the tab focus as I tab
through the menu - is this due to drop-down menus that are not dropped down
on tabbing? This was also quite confusing. Best practice (IMHO) is not to
provide keyboard/tab access to the expanded menu, but to allow keyboard
users to just access the top level and then go to an intermediate page with
the dropdown choices clearly visible. On analysis I found 55 links on your
page, but far less that I could see where I was going to. This meant that
"About Us" was link 27 on the page, rather than link 9 - very annoying and

Cheers, Andrew
Dr Andrew Arch
Accessible Information Solutions, NILS
Ph +613 9864 9282; Fax +613 9864 9370

National Information and Library Service
A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.

-----Original Message-----
From: sethmr [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ]
Sent: Thursday, 16 December 2004 9:34 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Tabindexes

On Dec 15, 2004, at 4:58 PM, david.hoffman wrote:

> The downside is that by deviating from an anticipated tab order, you
> are
> likely to seriously confuse the visual keyboard user who is unlikely to
> expect the customized behavior.

> What does your template look like? I have experimented with techniques
> for
> improving keyboard navigation without creating unusual behaviors...


Good point about expected behavior. The template is basically a logo
plus lots of links hidden in a horizontal ul with css styled ul drop
downs that appear on mouse hovers and, beneath that, a little site
search form. I want people who might also use the skip nav link to have
a quick way of getting to the search form so I gave it low number in
the tab order even though it comes after the menu. That way, even
though the skip nav link passes over the search form, there's an easy
way back to it. Same with the link to the catalog which is the last
link in the menu and I don't want to torture people using the tab key.

You can test it out at http://www.joneslibrary.org/newbanner13.html



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