Web Accessibility: Web Design for the Mobility-Impaired

Mobility Limitation isn’t always as obvious as you might think it is.You do not need extremes of disabilities such as paralysis or missing limbs proposals. Try coming up with a simple fall or other accident that results in both hands in plaster and unable to use a mouse. Now, with that in mind, your website in your browser, make a sharpened pencil in your mouth, the eraser and try to use the TAB key until you all the way to the main content of your page. With a well-placed “skipnav, a TAB key you will see the link, and click the ENTER button gives you access to the main content. Thats accessibility. It is the web equivalent of a driveway.

A skipnav is a link at the top of the page (before any other content on the page) that allows a user to all top-bar and a left sidebar skip and go directly to the content. Are generally a simple text link placed either in the beginning of the header or in a separate DIV prior to the header. Are one of the few pieces of page content deemed acceptable for cloaking (matching text color, background color or use CSS to size or if the off-screen slide invisible to the user.) Like most accessibility options , it exists mainly for disabled users and doesn’t have to be seen to be helpful.

Web design for a limited mobility also includes checking your scripts to see if your mouse-centric behavior. Without touching your mouse, try to get around your site. There arent perfect keyboard equivalents for all mouse events, but the main are pretty basic. If you have a Click event, add the same KeyPress event. If you mouse over an event, add the same focus event. If you are a mouseOut event, add the same event BLUR. Accessibility is about making the page for everyone no matter how useful to his or her work around.

ACCESSKEY the value of the anchor tag is a good and far too little function to add to your navigation. Although currently not supported in some browsers and browser versions, one of those things that doesn’t hurt your page by being there. Browsers that support dont just ignore it. Users hold down the ALT key (the CONTROL key for Mac users) and press the specified single, alphanumeric character set or focus or activate a link, depending on the browser. It allows you to create shortcuts for the main site navigation.

Other aspects of mobility impairment of the computer use may not initially occur to you. These include slowed reflexes, lack of coordination, tremors, ticks, paralysis, arthritis, and anything else that could make a user’s hand is not cooperating. I, for one, have a hard time double clicking quickly enough (due to nerve damage) to the computer to register as such. Avoid page design, which relies on a site visitors rate and eye / hand coordinationâ € “unless, of course, your page you want to feel like a video game. Avoid single character or a figure hyperlinks on a page or image maps with small hot spots. (I know, scripted image maps are a whole different issue.)

You would not believe how many web pages that Ive been using words such as “I” or the number “1″ as an important content links.Trying to hit that after six cups of coffee. Our goal isn’t to make it more difficult for site visitors to our sites use, its about making it easier and more intuitive. Thats usability. It is the web equivalent of a well-ordered office directory placed clearly on the wall neatly labeled with signs on each door.

I know these things are a little extra time and effort, but theyre worth it. It’s just not that hard to establish yourself in need of them.

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

Powered by Web Designing