Archive for the "JAWS" Topic

Indicating Link Purpose with ARIA

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An Analysis on Different Screen Reader Behaviors Authors must avoid using the same text for links that retrieve different resources. Users without disabilities may be able to identify the links differently based on other page content; however, users with cognitive disabilities and users who are blind or visually impaired may have difficulty making the distinction when link text does not adequately describe each link’s purpose. For example, across a site, you have several links that direct users to view more information on a particular section, such as Read Review for a particular project. When there are multiple links of the same text,… Read More

Web Accessibility 101 Video Series: Screen Reader Language Support

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In this week’s featured video in our Web Accessibility 101 Series, Senior Accessibility Consultant Thomas Logan demonstrates the screen reader language support feature in JAWS and the importance of proper page markup for this feature to function properly. Be sure to check out SSB’s YouTube Channel for more videos in this series!

Style Over Substance: The Content CSS Property and Accessibility

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The content CSS property is an interesting property used in conjunction with either the :before or :after pseudo-elements that can insert text, symbols, and images into a web page from a stylesheet.  This property presents a number of issues for developers who understand the importance of making sure their work is accessible to people who use assistive technology.  Assistive technology allows people to use the power of the Internet even if they happen to be blind, or if they have cognitive, motor, or visual impairments. Developing a website that is accessible is not only the socially responsible thing to do,… Read More

How Windows Screen Readers Work on the Web

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If you try to use a Windows screen reader on the web for the first time, you might find the experience to be daunting and confusing. This is because Windows screen readers introduce new access paradigms which do not always match what is displayed visually. Windows screen readers offer several modes to allow a user to review and interact with web content. Successfully using a screen reader on the web requires the user to be able to determine which mode is currently active, the operation paradigm for each mode, and how to switch modes as required. Developers also need to… Read More

How Browsers Interact with Screen Readers and Where ARIA Fits in the Mix

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The differing behaviors of screen readers across various browsers are noticed all the time by screen reader users, and differing levels of ARIA support are noticed in a similar manner, but the reasons why this happens aren’t commonly understood by the majority of people. For example, the most widely used screen reader, JAWS, is hard coded to work best in Internet Explorer. The second most widely used screen reader, NVDA, is hard coded to work best in Firefox. This includes ARIA support. Here is the reason why. All browsers that support accessibility, include an Accessibility API that is built into… Read More

WebAIM Screen Reader Survey

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SSB applauds WebAIM for their efforts to bring data to our community.  A great example is their recent survey on screen reader usage and preferences.  In May 2012, WebAIM conducted a survey of preferences of screen reader users. They received 1782 valid responses to this survey. This was a follow-up survey to the original WebAIM Screen Reader User Survey of January 2009 and the follow-up surveys from October 2009 and December 2010.  The survey was primarily distributed via Internet channels – email lists, social media, etc.  This would suggest that the majority of respondents who found out about and completed… Read More

Java Access Bridge Support – 64 Bit Windows

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The Java Access Bridge now works with 64 bit windows and JAWS. While this support has been included for several months there are still questions as to how to set it up to work with AMP Desktop. For instructions visit the following URL: The Java Access Bridge allows Java applications to communicate with screen readers such as JAWS for windows. If the Java Access bridge is not installed properly then Java applications will not work with screen readers and other assistive technology. To install Java and the Java Access Bridge on 64 bit windows, Java version 1.6U25 or later… Read More

Methods of Indicating the Purpose of a Link

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Methods of indicating the purpose of a link Overview The different methods of indicating a link’s purpose are often misunderstood and incorrectly implemented. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) explicitly require that link text accurately reflects the target and purpose of the link. While current Section 508 standards do not explicitly state this — many Federal Agencies in the US require similar practices under Section 1194.31 Functional Performance Criteria. The harmonization of Section 508 as indicated in the US Access Board’s last Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANRPM) also indicates that link purpose will be explicitly required when Section 508… Read More

Accessibility of Browsers

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While Internet explorer and Firefox work well with leading screen readers on Windows, and Safari works well with VoiceOver on the Mac, the question arises as to the current state of other browsers such as safari and opera on windows and Opera and Firefox on the Mac. Windows Safari Safari does not work with JAWS or NVDA there is no virtual cursor. It is possible to hear links and form controls when tabbing through the page. Window-Eyes seems to work with browse mode on (virtual cursor). However Some quick navigation commands do not work. For example, “h” does not move… Read More

Remarks on Internet Explorer 9 Accessibility and Compatibility with Assistive Technology

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The release of Internet Explorer 9 has brought about new accessibility challenges which have, as a result, necessitated many assistive technology manufacturers to release new versions of their products. IE 9 runs on 32 and 64-bit versions of Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Server 2008, thus these issues will not affect users of earlier versions of Windows where using IE 9 is not an option. The biggest accessibility-impacting challenge resulted from a change to the method used by the browser to render content on the screen. The new method, Direct2D, paints content directly to the screen instead of allowing rendering… Read More

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