On 6/29/05, Drake, Ted C.  wrote:

re:
<http://www.boxofchocolates.ca/archives/2005/06/12/javascript-and-
accessibility>
 
>After reading this post, I began thinking that the solution may be to
>seperate javascripts into basic and advanced sets. Just as we import
>advanced style sheets to avoid confusing early browsers, perhaps we
>can set an option to turn off advanced scripting. 

<snip />

>Are there any JavaScript people on this list that could comment?

As both a JavaScript and an accessibility person, I'll step in for a
moment.  We (the WaSP Accessibility Task Force) will be looking at all
possibilities in depth to determine what kind of scripting and
techniques are to be considered "safe" to be used with screen readers
and other assistive technology (we need best practices for dealing with
screen magnifiers as well, and need a better understanding of the
implications of AJAX type techniques for that group of people)

In principle, I don't see anything wrong with a layered approach to
JavaScript, much in the same way we layer style sheets. Once we better
understand the finer points of the interaction between JavaScript and
screen readers (for example), we could in theory determine which things
will be safe, and then allow a preferences page to turn off specific
"portions" of the JavaScript.

I like your idea of allowing the user to turn off and on portions of the
JavaScript via preferences - I don't usually advocate this approach on
its own, but in this case, though, it is likely that if they disable JS
completely, other sites will stop working as expected. Yes, I know - too
bad for the "other" sites because it is their own fault in the first
place. Erring on the side of caution though, a "scripting preferences"
might be useful and less likely to cause other problems.

There are a couple of tricky points that we'd need to sort out -
directing people to preferences to make the change, ensuring that it is
well explained without being too "techie," and to avoid having too many
options - in my opinion, it needs to be limited to "all scripting,"
"core only," and no scripting options - otherwise it gets too difficult
to understand.

Hope this helps - there are parts I'm being deliberately vague about as
the Task Force is only just getting started and we have a lot of work to
do... Please be reassured that we are looking at this very seriously
with a very talented group of people, and hopefully we'll be making some
good progress soon.

Best regards,
Derek.
-- 
Derek Featherstone   [EMAIL PROTECTED]
tel: 613-599-9784  1-866-932-4878 (toll-free in North America)
Web Development: http://www.furtherahead.com
Personal:        http://www.boxofchocolates.ca
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