A11y Club

By Charlie Owen on

Some live notes from #a11yclub Düsseldorf.

A11y Club is super fab, and I always love coming here. Here's some live notes.

Manuel Matuzović - Accessible React

8 tips for React apps.

1. Create a sound document outline

  • Screen readers navigate by headings. Skip direct to heading.
  • React heading component. Automatically sets heading levels.
  • use tools to determine outline. Toberly?
  • also benefits SEO

2. Hide content correctly

  • You can hide headings visually.
  • Don't use display: none as it hides things from a11y tree
  • But best to incorporate into design.
  • Use text for all icon buttons. You can visually hide it.

3. Use buttons when appropriate!

  • don't use divs! They are not focusable. You can make it accessible but why do the extra work?
  • button gives semantic meaning for free

4. Use fragments to avoid invalid HTML.

  • Fragments allow you to avoid typical React div wrappers
  • <React.fragment>

5. Take care of focus management.

  • React client apps continuously modify DOM
  • this can lead to focus being lost
  • make sure you manage focus!
  • but don't over complicate it!

6. Make notifications accessible to everyone.

  • popup messages need to be accessible to screen readers
  • use aria Live Regions to communicate to screen readers
  • Reach UI, react-aria-live

7. Announce page changes when SPA "page" changes.

  • Reach Router can help a lot with this.

8. Test your React code automatically.

  • react-axe is best tool
  • use only on dev
  • auto testing lets you test for low hanging fruit

Marc Hainschild - Separation of Concerns

  • works for federal office of agriculture and food
  • needs way to have components that work in many different apps and tech stacks
  • wants to respect separation of concerns.
  • HTML first, with server side rendered code, progressively enhanced.
  • starting with HTML makes accessibility first class citizen.
  • Has base styles for all HTML primitives.
  • Applies specialised component styles as needed.
  • Example of [Able Player](https://ableplayer.github.io/ableplayer/ transcriptions).
  • Designing for a disability makes life better for so many other people.
  • HTML, CSS, A11y fully documented in specs.