Accessible Keyboard Shortcuts
Last updated: January 14, 2013
If you find any of the information useful, or if you find anything to be incomplete or inaccurate, please let me know.
Since most assistive technology software is controlled using keyboard
shortcuts, web developers must be very careful when adding keyboard shortcuts
to applications in order to avoid conflicts. This is the root of the problem
with using accesskeys!
Note: This section is still under development. Please get in touch with any ideas.
- Detect unmodified key presses to avoid conflicts
- Beware Opera as some browser functionality uses unmodified keys
- Only detect key events in certain contexts
- Filter when user is typing into a page, e.g. <input>, <textarea>, <select>, special widgets, etc.
- Use modifier keys judiciously
- Avoid most modifier combinations
- Detecting shift-only modification for uppercase letters is fine
- Allow all unused keyboard shortcuts to pass through the handler
- Provide users with a list of the keyboard shortcuts used by the application
- Allow users to turn off keyboard shortcuts
Coming very soon!
- Some applications use the ? character to bring up a help
dialog. This character is a special case. In Mozilla, it only fires on an
onkeypress event and is only detectable on the event's
- Common Opera keys:
- shift + arrows (to navigate)
- 1 and 2 (to move between tabs)
- G and I (turn off styles/images)
- 0 and 9 and 6 (change text size)
- return, shift+return, ctrl+shift+return to click on things