Tabbing through controls on the Mac...
eli at media.berkeley.edu
Fri Aug 17 05:07:28 UTC 2007
For the last two days I've been struggling with re-factoring some web
front-end code for keyboard accessibility.
Working in Firefox on a new Mac, and following some great
documentation on the Mozilla site, I couldn't get my page to support
tabbing to links and buttons. The tab key would jump past them onto
the first field on the page. (Firefox on the PC worked the way that I
problem but the code was getting messy and everything I read on the
web said that it should just work.
On consulting with Toronto, I discovered that their Mac showed the
correct tabbing behavior. Oh no, it's just my machine. But wait, I
try another Mac at the office and, yes, it too will not tab to links
Finally, I found a blog article pointing me to an obscure little
setting in Keyboard Shortcuts under the Keyboard & Mouse system
preferences called Full keyboard access. The default setting is Text
boxes and lists only but needs to be set to All controls to support
My hope is that most users who really need full keyboard control have
learned about this setting long ago. But I'm distressed that, at
least on the Mac, keyboard behavior could be quite different for
different users depending on something over which we have little
user experience developer
ETS, UC Berkeley
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