Brief History of Browser Accessibility Support - Steve Faulkner, Paciello Group
The development of a ‘Brief history of browser accessibility support‘ was prompted by Google’s Evolution of the Web interactive infographic. I was dazzled by its coolness, but noticed that amongst all the web technologies ARIA 1.0 was not to be found. ARIA is included in the makeup of the open web stack.
This got me thinking that it would be useful to have an infographic showing the timeline for implementations of the various accessibility APIs and accessibility related technical specifications. Below is a rather large thumbnail version of the (non interactive infographic, based on the ‘Evolution of the Web’). There is also a full size version and related timeline available.
Note: If you have more accurate information on any content in the graphic or timeline please speak up!
Brief history of browser accessibility support infographic
Accessibility API and Specification support table
The following table attempts to provide an at a glance overview of where support is at now in 2011. It has been derived from information available on the web, ad hoc testing, user reports and any other sources I could find.
Note: If you have more accurate information please speak up!
- “Good support” means implemented to a level that provides support for the majority of features.
- “partial support” lacks support for some important features.
- “not applicable” means the browser does not run on the OS for which the Accessibility API is designed.
- “not supported” means the browser does not have practical support for the specification or Accessibility API on the OS.
Note: The table refers to the current versions of browsers as of 06/10/2011.
Glossary of terms (used in the table and infographic)
- ARIA Accessible Rich Internet Applications 1.0 (cross platform)
- AT-SPI Assistive Technology Service Provider Interface (Linux)
- Ax/uiA The Mac OS X Accessibility Protocol (Mac OS X)
- Introduction to Accessibility Programming Guidelines for Cocoa (Mac OS X)
- UIAccessibility Protocol Reference (iOS)
- IA2 Iaccessible2 (Windows/Linux)
- MSAA Microsoft Active Accessibility (Windows)
- UAAG 1.0 User Agent Accessibility Guidelines 1.0
- UIA Microsoft UI Automation (Windows)
About the blogger:
- Steven Faulker: is the Senior Web Accessibility Consultant and Technical Director, The Paciello Group Europe. He joined The Paciello Group in 2006 and was previously a Senior Web Accessibility Consultant at vision australia. He is the creator and lead developer of the Web Accessibility Toolbar accessibility testing tool. Steve is a member of several groups, including the W3C HTML Working Group and the W3C Protocols and Formats Working Group. He also develops and maintains www.HTML5accessibility.com