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Re: [PATCH] Some accessibility improvements



On Monday, 16 July 2012 12:44:07 Jesse Keating wrote:

> Really sorry to say this, but we've been re-writing the UI.  There is
> a newui branch in upstream git where this is happening.  All the code
> in pyanaconda/iw/ is slated to go away, which makes all the patches
> here not as useful as you would have hoped.

Drat. Oh well, life happens....

While the patches are admittedly no longer useful as patches, what the 
patches do likely still is. Namely, if you want your new UI to be 
accessible:

1. Most of your labels should programmatically point to the widget they
    are labeling. The easiest way to do this is set the mnemonic-widget
    property and let Gtk+ do the accessibility automatically for you.

    Related note: If you have a GtkLabel within a container applying to
    a  group of widgets in that container, you can make the container
    the mnemonic-widget. And you should. That way when users first
    give focus to a more traditional widget, their screen reader can
    also present the group label as context.

2. On any given "screen" or step in a wizard, do NOT do a focus grab
    on the "Next" button. Doing so means that each time a user who
    is blind goes to the next screen/step, all he or she is told is
    "Next" because screen readers track and present focus changes.
    Before too long, the gnome-shell screen magnifier will also track
    focus changes. As a result, for these users, what they should be
    viewing may be off screen because the magnifier is showing the
    "Next" button. Making users have to hunt around to figure out
    what a screen/step accomplishes and provide the needed info
    is not especially accessible. This brings me to:

3. On any given "screen" or step in a wizard, DO the focus grab on
    the first widget. If you have also done item 1 correctly, the result
    will be that moving from step to step causes screen readers and
    screen magnifiers to automatically present what the user needs
    to know.

4. On any given "screen" or step in a wizard, consider making the "Next" 
    button the default. That way, users can still press Return to 
    advance to the next step if no changes are needed in the current 
    one.

5. Be on the lookout for stock widget name conflicts, especially when
    graphical buttons are being used. One of the advanced steps in
    Anaconda allows the user to choose which disks should be included
    in the install, and has the user select drives and then press stock
    buttons which have left and right arrows to indicate the direction
    of movement. This makes sense visually; non-visually it does not
    because the user doesn't see spatially where things are moving.
    (i.e. that the "don't include" list is on the left and the "do
    include" is not known because it cannot be seen and is not being
    stated). This problem is complicated by the fact that the installer
    as a wizard has a "Back" button and the left-pointing arrow's stock
    name is "Back". If, in the new UI, that step is going to remain more
    or less as-is, please change the accessible name of the stock
    widgets. (I believe this is possible; I've not yet tried it. And
    that brings me to....)

As you can see, accessible UIs really aren't rocket science. :) Gtk+ 
gives you quite a bit of accessibility goodness automatically. As you 
have also seen, my "want to do" items on my TODO list can fall victim to 
my "must do" items. :( So.... If those of you working on the new UI can 
keep the above 5 things in mind, you can be ensuring most things are 
accessible all along the way.  Should you have questions as you are 
doing so, come on by #a11y in irc.gnome.org. I'm usually there (though 
often idling), ditto for Benjamin Otte who is our resident Gtk+ 
accessibility expert.  Many other Accessibility Team members are 
typically there as well, and we would all be more than happy to help you 
sort out any questions or problems you have. Lastly, when you get closer 
to having the new UI completed and would like someone to give it a spin 
to be sure it's accessible, please let me know.

Thanks and take care.
--joanie


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