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[_] flash drop-down menus & accessibility

Andrew Parkhouse create at rubberductions.com
Fri Jun 18 16:35:20 BST 2004


> We have had various thoughts on alternatives, and we can't reduce the
> size
> of the menu. How about flash? I'm sure flash would run fast enough
> for
> this use, and I think we have a controlled enough environment that we
> can
> probably ensure flash 6 is installed on all machines.

Presumably these are text links cascading hierarchically, created
dynamically? Flash would be good for this - you would need minimal
graphic content and the code would be quite elegant and streamlined.

I've never seen it in action, but the support for JAWS reading content
descriptions aloud is *supposed* to be good, and adding descriptions to
relevant objects dynamically in a menu system would be trivial. Less
trivial is keyboard navigation for movement-impaired users, but it just
needs a bit of thinking about - certainly no less than Javascript.

not directly relevant, but worth a read for the general issues...

<http://useit.com/alertbox/20021014.html>

<http://alistapart.com/articles/flashmxclarifying/>

- Bigger problem is getting the menu system to cascade over the page
content - display of Flash content is usually restricted to the plugin
object boundary, there are ways around it with CSS, it's one of the
more common questions & answers on Flash forums etc.

I'd say whack a quick Flash app together and test - btw, I reckon any
Bristol webbie who got JAWS onto a spare laptop would find themselves
with a a growing number of friends these days...

cheers,

andy

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