Archived entries for Accessibility

wg:List – Best Web Development Articles of 2005

Alessandro Fulciniti reported his Top 20 Bookmarks of 2005 on the Web-Graphics blog. Some great stuff, in particular On having layout (a must-read for anybody trying to get CSS to work in browsers). If you’re doing web development or design, I recommend being familiar with all 20 of his list.

RIA’s, Accessible DHTML, Prime Rib and London

Phew, it’s been a hectic but great week. I’m off to London in a few minutes to participate in the Yahoo! Europe Web Development Conference (where I’ll be presenting and co-presenting four sessions), but I wanted to report on some of the things from this past week while they’re still fresh.

On Monday I gave a presentation to our User Experience and Design group. I work in the Presentation Platform Engineering group, and part of my job is to help bridge between Design and Engineering. (Before joining the Platform Engineering team, I worked on the Platform Design team, so I can speak both languages to some extent.)

With so much changing in interface development this year, it’s important to coordinate the creation of a new vocabulary for rich internet interfaces. I’ll write more on this in the coming weeks, but you can check out Bill Scott’s blog post for his take on my talk, where he focuses on Storyboarding Interesting Moments, a part of what I talked about.

Though all the words didn’t flow as well as they do sometimes for me, the presentation was well received and generated some excellent discussion. Larry Tesler, our SVP of UED, was one of several that had some kind words for me afterward. I would be remiss if I didn’t pass most of the credit to Eric Miraglia, a colleague and great mind who’s been instrumental in developing our vision. (More on that from Eric, here.)

On Monday night, I joined Victor Tsaran (our Accessibility Product Manager) at a casual dinner of about a dozen Bay Area accessibility folks from Adobe, Macromedia, Apple, IBM and Sun. Over Italian in San Mateo, it was a great chance to meet others addressing the needs of accessibility community. This theme continued for the rest of the week.

On Wednesday, I went to the Mozilla Foundation, for a co-presentation between IBM’s Accessibility Architect Aaron Leventhal and Yahoo!’s Victor Tsaran. They discussed the IBM/Mozilla Accessible DHTML project, first supported in the new Firefox 1.5. It’s great stuff, and will be critical as the web moves to richer interfaces.

On Friday, Aaron presented a technical overview of the capabilities to a team of our engineers, answering questions and giving guidance to engineers investigating the “Accessible DHTML” approach.

Friday night I had dinner in Pac Heights at the beautiful home of a friend of a friend, a promenient SF lawyer. The prime rib was perfectly cooked, and we laughed quite a bit. The five-course meal and case of wine took the wind from my sails so I didn’t get around to packing at all last night. As soon as I finish typing this post I need to quickly pack — clothes are almost out of the dryer, and I need to leave for the airport in about 66 minutes.


Can’t wait to be laying on the white sands of Culebra in two weeks, away from web and world. (We went last year too, and couldn’t resist going again. I don’t have a Ph.D., but it’s still suits me fine.)

XForms 1.0 Second Preview Available for Firefox 1.5 Beta 2

In addition to the great DHTML Accessibility code available in Firefix 1.5 (currently in beta) that I wrote about earlier, Firefox 1.5 Beta 2 supports the second preview of XForms 1.0.

Micah Dubinko (blog) served as an editor and author of the XForms 1.0 W3C specification, has written many articles for, and I’m happy to say is a recent addition to the ever-growing Yahoo! team. He’s a smart guy, and I’ve already had many interesting converstations with him on everything from XForms, to the role of the W3c, to Microformats.

He’ll definitely be part of the post I’ve been meaning to write about about all the great people that I get to work with. It’s almost getting silly – brilliant new people are coming onboard around every day. There have always been great people here, but the influx of new energy and ideas is, of course, wonderful. Just today: Tom Coates.

Top Ten Web Design Mistakes of 2005 – Jakob Strikes Again

Jakob Nielsen published another installment of Mistakes. This time, the Top Ten Web Design Mistakes of 2005.

He’s been sometimes off the mark over the years, but all10 ring true this time. At least 8 of the 10 regularly annoy me both as a user and as a web developer.

Give it a read. Even if you already know what they are, it’s worth hearing it and seeing it one more time.

(Of his ten, #3, #7 and #10 are the most annoying to me as a user. Which do you dislike most?)

DHTML Accessibility on the W3C Roadmap

As my talented coworker Bill Scott pointed out recently, an exciting area of development aims to make DHTML, Ajax, and Rich Internet Applications (RIA) accessible to the widest possible audience.

Information and examples here:

I’ll have a lot more to say about this soon. In the meantime, I’m very happy to see that this great work (by IBM) has made it onto the public W3C WAI roadmap:

  1. WAI Dynamic Accessible Web Content Roadmap 0.21
  2. States and Adaptable Properties Module
  3. Role Taxonomy for Accessible Adaptable Applications

Stay tuned!

Opera 8: Max Value for Text Indent

Nick Rigby discovers and writes that Opera 8 has a maximum text-indent value of 32697 pixels.

Clearly this is an edge case and not all that common, but those that use the "off-left" technique might find something familiar in his quote:

There would be no need to ever use a value this large, but I happened to be using -9999em originally, which, depending on the default font-size of the document, is a lot more than this limit value. Hence, it did not work in Opera 8.

Anyways, just a little tip for your toolbox.

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