Additions and Changes

On 14 December 2017, the W3C released an update to its specification for Accessible Rich Internet Applications (WAI-ARIA) 1.1.

The specification contains a number of additions and changes which have been excellently outlined in a series of articles by Bryan Garaventa, a research developer for the W3C ARIA Working Group:

Authoring Practices

One of the problems with WAI-ARIA is that it is often sprayed all over the page, like weed killer.

Coinciding with the release of ARIA 1.1, the W3C has now released an update to its WAI-ARIA Authoring Practices 1.1.

The update includes information on a number of commonly misused design patterns and widgets, including:

The update also has some useful information on developing a keyboard interface, including:

Finally, the update contains some useful information on Effects of role="presentation".

Screen Reader Compatibility

The team at Powermapper maintain an excellent table screen reader and user agent support for ARIA.

Testing ARIA with NVDA

Whilst ARIA looks great in theory, it is important that we test our work, to make sure that it is actually working.

NVDA is the best screen reader for testing ARIA. It can be installed as follows:

  1. Go to the NVDA web site
  2. You can either make a donation for using the software or select 'Skip donation at this time'
  3. Enter you email address (they won't spam you)
  4. Click download
  5. Go to the add-ons page and download Focus Highlight