Support for text attributes and spell checking is coming in Firefox 3.1!

For those of you on the bleeding edge, namely on the Firefox 3.1a1pre nightly builds, the Friday’s nightly build will include one big new feature in accessibility for 3.1: Text attributes and spell checking support!

This means that assistive technologies now have access to the attributes of any text run on a page via the IAccessibleHyperText::getAttributes or ATK/AT-SPI equivalent API calls.

For example, running today’s nightly build of Firefox 3.1a1pre on Windows, visiting my blog’s main page, bringing up Accessibility Probe, and navigating to the link below the Heading Level 1 that says “Marco’s Accessibility blog”, a call to IAccessibleHyperText::GetAttributes on the link accessible will get you this result:


getAttributes(1) = NULL

Not very fancy, huh?

Tomorrow’s build, however, will yield a completely different result:


getAttributes(1) = org.eclipse.actf.accservice.core.win32.ia2.IA2TextSegment[text=font-style:normal;language:en-US;text-align:center;font-size:40px;background-color:transparent;font-weight:bold;text-indent:0px;color:rgb(255\, 255\, 255);font-family:'Trebuchet MS'\,'Lucida Grande'\,Verdana\,Arial\,Sans-Serif;text-underline-style:underlinesolid;,start=0,end=26]

So, not only do you get information about the font-family, style, color and backgroundcolor, you also get the language this text is in, the underline style, the font-weight etc.

Also when editing, and you misspell something, as soon as you hit spacebar and the red underline appears, the attributes of that word will change and will include “invalid:misspelling;”, indicating that this word is invalid in that it is misspelled. Of course, an according IA2/ATK event will be fired accordingly! Note that the denotation of this may change if the IAccessible2 and ATK groups decide on a different notation for misspellings. Right now, it follows the aria-invalid convention, and we hope that this will be accepted by the groups.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll fine-tune this feature to be a bit more performant and also iron out any last details that might come up.

But if you’re an assistive technology vendor and you’ve been waiting for us to finally expose these text attributes, now is the time to try them out and provide feedback.

Note that Thunderbird and other projects that will be moving to use the Gecko 1.9.1 platform will also get this feature. This means that inline spell checking notification can also be supported for those apps soon!

[Update]: This patch made it into Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.9.1a1pre) Gecko/2008071803 Minefield/3.1a1pre just fine. So go take a peek!

This entry was posted in Accessibility, Firefox, Mozilla, SeaMonkey, Thunderbird and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
Skip to top

Comments

15 Responses to Support for text attributes and spell checking is coming in Firefox 3.1!

  1. Pingback: No al IE6 » Blog Archive » Control ortográfico y atributos de texto en Firefox 3.1

  2. Hermann says:

    Has this been implemented into the first prerelease of 3.1, aka Shiretoko?

  3. Marco says:

    @Hermann, yes it has. We’re obviously tweaking it still. The 3.1a1 Shiretoko release doesn’t contain a proper background color calculation right now, for example, but the guts of it is there.

  4. Pingback: Rumah Tuhan Ki$isel Web $eysi » Better Accessibility Support in Firefox 3.1

  5. Mark says:

    Looking forward to this feature! :D

  6. Pingback: Mozilla Firefox 3.1 Beta 1 发布 » Web Annals 互联网资讯站

  7. Pingback: Mozilla Firefox 3.1 Beta 1 | abrowser-浏览器在线

  8. Pingback: 拽拽资讯 » Mozilla Firefox 3.1 Beta 1 发布

  9. Pingback: Mozilla Firefox 3.1 Beta 2 发布 | 丸子's blog

  10. Pingback: Mozilla Firefox 3.1 Beta 2 发布 | 紧跟IT潮流

  11. Pingback: Mozilla Firefox 3.1 Beta 2 发布 | 丸子

  12. Pingback: NVDA 0.6p3 released, quite some news for Mozilla users! « Marco’s accessibility blog

  13. Pingback: New accessibility features in Firefox 3.5 « Marco’s accessibility blog

  14. Pingback: New accessibility features in Firefox 3.5 « AccessTech News

  15. Pingback: New accessibility features in Firefox 3.5 « The BAT Channel

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>