[thesite] Re: Read the article, and a usability issue with the site

Ben Henick persist1 at io.com
Fri Mar 2 07:18:19 CST 2001

On Thu, 1 Mar 2001, aardvark wrote:

> Ben, I hope you don't mind, but I'm bringing this over to thesite (the 
> list devoted to discussions of, well, the site) so that some others 
> can have some input.  I think your points are good points, and I'd 
> rather not make unilateral assertions without letting other people 
> take a whack at my logic.

Go for it.

> Good.  Dammit.


> Agreed.  While my own testing with impaired users hasn't shown 
> this, that suggests I need to do more testing.  One thing we might 
> want to consider is gathering the alt-key combos from the major 
> browsers and making those off-limits.

"Me too."

> But that begs the question, what if we run out of letters?  Do we 
> dump the accesskey attributes?  And who can we blame for this, 
> browsers or us?  I need blame to made.

As the list at the bottom shows, there are still plenty of letters to play
with once you get through the most-important stuff.

when everything is said and done, you've got lots of keys to work
with.  With three keys to shift bit positions, and a long list of
barely-used function keys, there are lots of possibilities.

Or mahybe I'm just optimistic because I've seen kanji being typed into a
computer, in person.

> So, is it better to kill the accesskeys or force users to use the 
> mouse?  I don't know that answer...

If certain macros are ascribed to under unwritten rules... well, there's
definitely a problem there.

However, I think it'd be possible to have the cake and eat it too.

What's discomfiting is finding a solid info architecture for documenting
the macros employed on the site.

> > ...Which bothers me, but that's another thought for another time.
> That you're the first to comment on it?

Yep!  Maybe I was a Luddite in a previous life.  :-)

> Anyway, verboten letters from the windows browsers i use regularly:
> IE5: f, e, v, a, t, h
> N6: f, e, v, s, g, b, t, h
> N3: f, e, v, g, b, o, d, w, h
> O5: f, e, v, n, b, m, g, s, w, n
> Any others?

Alt [sp] & Alt-F4, though Windows may itself put the latter off limits.

Well, an investigation of Ctrl macros seems advisable as well.

O, P, X, C, V, A, F, R, N, B, L...

Ben Henick
Web Author At-Large
persist1 at io.com

"Are you pondering what I'm pondering, Pinky?"
"I think so, Brain, but... (snort) no, no, it's too stupid."
"We will disguise ourselves as a cow."
"Oh!" (giggles) "That was it exactly!"

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