Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

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Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Jamal Mazrui
Hi Aaron,
If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional roles
and by overloading other attributes with more data about the UI.  Just
curious -- does this affect compatibility with the User Interface
Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much rewoarking of the
Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for UIA?  Is that a
direction you even intend to go at this point?

Best regards,
Jamal
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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Aaron Leventhal-3
Hi Jamal,

Great question.

UI Automation has much better support for documents and the gaps of MSAA
in general. The missing pieces of MSAA where why we created the new
string-based (BSTR) roles. In addition, there are ways to create new
roles in UI Automation. So no problem there.

I've reviewed UI Automation at a general level, but I think it is
possible to migrate Mozilla to it. It might be hard to support both UI
Automation and MSAA in the same build, however. That's a problem,
because we don't want to support 2 versions of Mozilla. How would we
know when to do the switch over? What about users with older screen readers?

Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment? From
my perspective, UI Automation is still quite a long way solid industry
uptake, and MSAA will continue to be supported in Vista. What's the
benefit for all the work?

- Aaron


Jamal Mazrui wrote:

> Hi Aaron,
> If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional roles
> and by overloading other attributes with more data about the UI.  Just
> curious -- does this affect compatibility with the User Interface
> Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much rewoarking of the
> Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for UIA?  Is that a
> direction you even intend to go at this point?
>
> Best regards,
> Jamal
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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Thomas Ward

Hi,

Aaron Leventhal wrote:
 What about users with older
screen readers?
Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment? From  
my perspective,
UI Automation is still quite a long way solid industry  uptake, and MSAA
will continue
to be supported in Vista.

I think the point we have to look at here is for the moment MSAA is
working well with screen readers like Window Eyes 5.5. Since the 1.5
release I have been able to successfully use both Firefox and
Thunderbird with Window Eyes using MSAA. I have heard UIA would render
some improvements, but we should continue on the course of what we
currently have working with MSAA. UIA is probably still going to be a
long ways out for allot of folks, and most screen readers and apps are
currently working pretty well with MSAA.
 As to your point of older screen readers there is quite a number of
users that don't update screen readers as often as we would like them
to. For example, I just found the other day while answering a tech
question to someone that the person was still using Window Eyes
4.2.11.Which the version is way way behind.
The point I'm trying to make here is even though access might not be as
good as a newer screen reader there still could be a degree of access
for older screen readers that support MSAA. If we go with UIA then
everyone with a screen reader that does not support it is automatically
dropped.

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RE: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Sina Bahram
In reply to this post by Aaron Leventhal-3
I think that if you really do want to be a beacon in accessibility. Showing
how to use UIA effectively would be a great step.

Also, I think you could take advantage of all of the speech recognition
benefits from UI automation; thus, allowing all of the speech input users to
take advantage of what mozilla has to offer, simply by turning on the speech
recognition in vista.

I agree that MSAA and UIA is not probably where we want to go with this, but
I will note that UIA is getting back ported to XP, and thus, they really
want people using UIA.

Maybe a transitional period is in order?

Now, I must ask a naïve but necessary programming question.

Hasn't the accessibility model been written in such a way that MSAA can
simply be slotted out and UIA slotted in once it is written?

Take care,
Sina

-----Original Message-----
From: [hidden email]
[mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of Aaron
Leventhal
Sent: Monday, May 01, 2006 11:07 AM
To: Jamal Mazrui
Cc: [hidden email]
Subject: Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Hi Jamal,

Great question.

UI Automation has much better support for documents and the gaps of MSAA in
general. The missing pieces of MSAA where why we created the new
string-based (BSTR) roles. In addition, there are ways to create new roles
in UI Automation. So no problem there.

I've reviewed UI Automation at a general level, but I think it is possible
to migrate Mozilla to it. It might be hard to support both UI Automation and
MSAA in the same build, however. That's a problem, because we don't want to
support 2 versions of Mozilla. How would we know when to do the switch over?
What about users with older screen readers?

Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment? From my
perspective, UI Automation is still quite a long way solid industry uptake,
and MSAA will continue to be supported in Vista. What's the benefit for all
the work?

- Aaron


Jamal Mazrui wrote:

> Hi Aaron,
> If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional
> roles and by overloading other attributes with more data about the UI.  
> Just curious -- does this affect compatibility with the User Interface
> Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much rewoarking of the
> Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for UIA?  Is that a
> direction you even intend to go at this point?
>
> Best regards,
> Jamal
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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Aaron Leventhal-3

> Hasn't the accessibility model been written in such a way that MSAA can
> simply be slotted out and UIA slotted in once it is written?
>  
What happens if a user upgrades Firefox because it's free, but has a
screen reader that doesn't use UIA?

Most likely the UIA transition will happen after a lot of other things
have moved to UIA and the industry considers it rock solid. In the
meantime, we can use other open source products to educate ourselves and
the world about UIA.

- Aaron

> Take care,
> Sina
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [hidden email]
> [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of Aaron
> Leventhal
> Sent: Monday, May 01, 2006 11:07 AM
> To: Jamal Mazrui
> Cc: [hidden email]
> Subject: Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista
>
> Hi Jamal,
>
> Great question.
>
> UI Automation has much better support for documents and the gaps of MSAA in
> general. The missing pieces of MSAA where why we created the new
> string-based (BSTR) roles. In addition, there are ways to create new roles
> in UI Automation. So no problem there.
>
> I've reviewed UI Automation at a general level, but I think it is possible
> to migrate Mozilla to it. It might be hard to support both UI Automation and
> MSAA in the same build, however. That's a problem, because we don't want to
> support 2 versions of Mozilla. How would we know when to do the switch over?
> What about users with older screen readers?
>
> Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment? From my
> perspective, UI Automation is still quite a long way solid industry uptake,
> and MSAA will continue to be supported in Vista. What's the benefit for all
> the work?
>
> - Aaron
>
>
> Jamal Mazrui wrote:
>  
>> Hi Aaron,
>> If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional
>> roles and by overloading other attributes with more data about the UI.  
>> Just curious -- does this affect compatibility with the User Interface
>> Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much rewoarking of the
>> Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for UIA?  Is that a
>> direction you even intend to go at this point?
>>
>> Best regards,
>> Jamal
>>    
> _______________________________________________
> dev-accessibility mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-accessibility
>
>
>  
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RE: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Sina Bahram
Indeed

Fair enough

Take care,
Sina

-----Original Message-----
From: [hidden email]
[mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of Aaron
Leventhal
Sent: Monday, May 01, 2006 1:47 PM
To: [hidden email]
Subject: Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista


> Hasn't the accessibility model been written in such a way that MSAA
> can simply be slotted out and UIA slotted in once it is written?
>  
What happens if a user upgrades Firefox because it's free, but has a screen
reader that doesn't use UIA?

Most likely the UIA transition will happen after a lot of other things have
moved to UIA and the industry considers it rock solid. In the meantime, we
can use other open source products to educate ourselves and the world about
UIA.

- Aaron

> Take care,
> Sina
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [hidden email]
> [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of
> Aaron Leventhal
> Sent: Monday, May 01, 2006 11:07 AM
> To: Jamal Mazrui
> Cc: [hidden email]
> Subject: Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista
>
> Hi Jamal,
>
> Great question.
>
> UI Automation has much better support for documents and the gaps of
> MSAA in general. The missing pieces of MSAA where why we created the
> new string-based (BSTR) roles. In addition, there are ways to create
> new roles in UI Automation. So no problem there.
>
> I've reviewed UI Automation at a general level, but I think it is
> possible to migrate Mozilla to it. It might be hard to support both UI
> Automation and MSAA in the same build, however. That's a problem,
> because we don't want to support 2 versions of Mozilla. How would we know
when to do the switch over?

> What about users with older screen readers?
>
> Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment?
> From my perspective, UI Automation is still quite a long way solid
> industry uptake, and MSAA will continue to be supported in Vista.
> What's the benefit for all the work?
>
> - Aaron
>
>
> Jamal Mazrui wrote:
>  
>> Hi Aaron,
>> If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional
>> roles and by overloading other attributes with more data about the UI.
>> Just curious -- does this affect compatibility with the User
>> Interface Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much rewoarking
>> of the Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for UIA?  Is that
>> a direction you even intend to go at this point?
>>
>> Best regards,
>> Jamal
>>    
> _______________________________________________
> dev-accessibility mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-accessibility
>
>
>  
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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Visually Insane Genetically Modified Organism
In reply to this post by Sina Bahram
I am starting to wonder If the DHTML, MSAA and UIA are a seperate module or
a actual part of the screen reader code. I remember when IVocalEyes (I can
not find current information) first came out; Window Eyes users were
encouraged to download MSAA.ini.

----
Angus MacKinnon
MacKinnon Crest Saying
Latin -  Audentes Fortuna Juvat
English - Fortune Assists The Daring
Web page http://www.infoforce-services.com
Choroideremia Research Foundation Inc. 2nd Vice president
http://www.choroideremia.org

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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Aaron Leventhal-3
In reply to this post by Sina Bahram
Firefox/Mozilla supports MSAA directly in its code. We implement MSAA
for HTML, XUL (the UI) and DHTML. It looks pretty much the same no
matter what you use to make a checkbox or any other kind of widget.

The screen reader utilizes the MSAA in this code. Since it always knows
what each widget will look like (a checkbox is ROLE_CHECKBOX potentially
with STATE_CHECKED), it shouldn't need to know which application the
checkbox is coming from.

Basically the MSAA acts as a communication medium between the desktop
application and the assistive technology, giving the 2 programs a
standard way to talk about what's going on.

Does that answer your question? More info on MSAA on msdn.

- Aaron

Visually Insane Genetically Modified Organism wrote:

> I am starting to wonder If the DHTML, MSAA and UIA are a seperate module
> or a actual part of the screen reader code. I remember when IVocalEyes
> (I can not find current information) first came out; Window Eyes users
> were encouraged to download MSAA.ini.
>
> ----
> Angus MacKinnon
> MacKinnon Crest Saying
> Latin -  Audentes Fortuna Juvat
> English - Fortune Assists The Daring
> Web page http://www.infoforce-services.com
> Choroideremia Research Foundation Inc. 2nd Vice president
> http://www.choroideremia.org
>
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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Thomas Ward
In reply to this post by Sina Bahram
Sina Bahram wrote:
> I think that if you really do want to be a beacon in accessibility. Showing
> how to use UIA effectively would be a great step.
>  

While that would probably be true UIA is really a new technology. It
would be a long time before the end users operating systems and screen
readers would catch up to take advantage of UIA. Remember there are
still several 98/ME Windows users that wouldn't necessarily have the
top-of-the-line version of Jaws or Window eyes.

> Also, I think you could take advantage of all of the speech recognition
> benefits from UI automation; thus, allowing all of the speech input users to
> take advantage of what mozilla has to offer, simply by turning on the speech
> recognition in vista.
>  

That would be very good, but then we are forcing end users to go out and
pay huge prices for Vista to take advantage of those features. Hardly
seams right for a free web browser and email client.

> I will note that UIA is getting back ported to XP, and thus, they really
> want people using UIA.
>  

What about 98/ME/2000 Windows users? I still have a system using Windows
2000 on it, and I'd have to have to pay for a copy of XP or Vista to put
on it justt to  use Firefox. That would suck.

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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Visually Insane Genetically Modified Organism
In reply to this post by Aaron Leventhal-3
Aaron

> Does that answer your question?

Yes. However, is it possible to increase a screen reader's DHTML support by
downloading a single file? Or would the individual need to upgrade the
entire screen reader? Screan reader upgrades are expensive.

----
Angus MacKinnon
MacKinnon Crest Saying
Latin -  Audentes Fortuna Juvat
English - Fortune Assists The Daring
Web page http://www.infoforce-services.com
Choroideremia Research Foundation Inc. 2nd Vice president
http://www.choroideremia.org

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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Aaron Leventhal-3
In reply to this post by Aaron Leventhal-3
The DHTML support on the screen reader end is tied to the same general
MSAA support they have for dialogs. This is generally hardcoded in
today's screen readers, so unfortunately the screen reader needs to be
upgraded for improved support. Someone correct me if they think otherwise.

- Aaron

Visually Insane Genetically Modified Organism wrote:

> Aaron
>
>> Does that answer your question?
>
> Yes. However, is it possible to increase a screen reader's DHTML support
> by downloading a single file? Or would the individual need to upgrade
> the entire screen reader? Screan reader upgrades are expensive.
>
> ----
> Angus MacKinnon
> MacKinnon Crest Saying
> Latin -  Audentes Fortuna Juvat
> English - Fortune Assists The Daring
> Web page http://www.infoforce-services.com
> Choroideremia Research Foundation Inc. 2nd Vice president
> http://www.choroideremia.org
>
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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Håkan Waara
In reply to this post by Aaron Leventhal-3
I understand that UIA is the new world Vista a11y APIs?

If that's the case, wouldn't it be possible to keep the current MSAA  
implementation, and then have a new "port" that is UIA and that  
implements as much as possible and falls back on MSAA for the things  
that are not (yet) available?

On runtime you'd decide which backend is best to use.

That's how the widget/cocoa backend does right now. The goal is the  
transition to 100% Cocoa.

Sorry if I'm way off here.

/Håkan

1 maj 2006 kl. 19.46 skrev Aaron Leventhal:

>
>> Hasn't the accessibility model been written in such a way that  
>> MSAA can
>> simply be slotted out and UIA slotted in once it is written?
>>
> What happens if a user upgrades Firefox because it's free, but has  
> a screen reader that doesn't use UIA?
>
> Most likely the UIA transition will happen after a lot of other  
> things have moved to UIA and the industry considers it rock solid.  
> In the meantime, we can use other open source products to educate  
> ourselves and the world about UIA.
>
> - Aaron
>> Take care,
>> Sina
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: [hidden email]
>> [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of  
>> Aaron
>> Leventhal
>> Sent: Monday, May 01, 2006 11:07 AM
>> To: Jamal Mazrui
>> Cc: [hidden email]
>> Subject: Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista
>>
>> Hi Jamal,
>>
>> Great question.
>>
>> UI Automation has much better support for documents and the gaps  
>> of MSAA in
>> general. The missing pieces of MSAA where why we created the new
>> string-based (BSTR) roles. In addition, there are ways to create  
>> new roles
>> in UI Automation. So no problem there.
>>
>> I've reviewed UI Automation at a general level, but I think it is  
>> possible
>> to migrate Mozilla to it. It might be hard to support both UI  
>> Automation and
>> MSAA in the same build, however. That's a problem, because we  
>> don't want to
>> support 2 versions of Mozilla. How would we know when to do the  
>> switch over?
>> What about users with older screen readers?
>>
>> Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment?  
>> From my
>> perspective, UI Automation is still quite a long way solid  
>> industry uptake,
>> and MSAA will continue to be supported in Vista. What's the  
>> benefit for all
>> the work?
>>
>> - Aaron
>>
>>
>> Jamal Mazrui wrote:
>>
>>> Hi Aaron,
>>> If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional  
>>> roles and by overloading other attributes with more data about  
>>> the UI.  Just curious -- does this affect compatibility with the  
>>> User Interface Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much  
>>> rewoarking of the Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for  
>>> UIA?  Is that a direction you even intend to go at this point?
>>>
>>> Best regards,
>>> Jamal
>>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> dev-accessibility mailing list
>> [hidden email]
>> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-accessibility
>>
>>
>>
> _______________________________________________
> dev-accessibility mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-accessibility

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Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista

Aaron Leventhal
Hmm, we could decide at runtime based on the current OS. Or perhaps the
installer could choose which accessibility.dll to install based on that.

The bigger problem is justifying the work. First of all, Vista is going
to map MSAA to UIA so the AT's will see UIA if they want to. The AT's
can also still see MSAA for those apps that have it, and I see no
indication that any of them are going to drop support in the next 5
years. The current solution works quite well.

- Aaron

Håkan Waara wrote:

> I understand that UIA is the new world Vista a11y APIs?
>
> If that's the case, wouldn't it be possible to keep the current MSAA
> implementation, and then have a new "port" that is UIA and that
> implements as much as possible and falls back on MSAA for the things
> that are not (yet) available?
>
> On runtime you'd decide which backend is best to use.
>
> That's how the widget/cocoa backend does right now. The goal is the
> transition to 100% Cocoa.
>
> Sorry if I'm way off here.
>
> /Håkan
>
> 1 maj 2006 kl. 19.46 skrev Aaron Leventhal:
>
>>
>>> Hasn't the accessibility model been written in such a way that MSAA can
>>> simply be slotted out and UIA slotted in once it is written?
>>>
>> What happens if a user upgrades Firefox because it's free, but has a
>> screen reader that doesn't use UIA?
>>
>> Most likely the UIA transition will happen after a lot of other
>> things have moved to UIA and the industry considers it rock solid. In
>> the meantime, we can use other open source products to educate
>> ourselves and the world about UIA.
>>
>> - Aaron
>>> Take care,
>>> Sina
>>>
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: [hidden email]
>>> [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of Aaron
>>> Leventhal
>>> Sent: Monday, May 01, 2006 11:07 AM
>>> To: Jamal Mazrui
>>> Cc: [hidden email]
>>> Subject: Re: Mozilla, UIA, and Vista
>>>
>>> Hi Jamal,
>>>
>>> Great question.
>>>
>>> UI Automation has much better support for documents and the gaps of
>>> MSAA in
>>> general. The missing pieces of MSAA where why we created the new
>>> string-based (BSTR) roles. In addition, there are ways to create new
>>> roles
>>> in UI Automation. So no problem there.
>>>
>>> I've reviewed UI Automation at a general level, but I think it is
>>> possible
>>> to migrate Mozilla to it. It might be hard to support both UI
>>> Automation and
>>> MSAA in the same build, however. That's a problem, because we don't
>>> want to
>>> support 2 versions of Mozilla. How would we know when to do the
>>> switch over?
>>> What about users with older screen readers?
>>>
>>> Does anyone see any reason to move to UI Automation at the moment?
>>> From my
>>> perspective, UI Automation is still quite a long way solid industry
>>> uptake,
>>> and MSAA will continue to be supported in Vista. What's the benefit
>>> for all
>>> the work?
>>>
>>> - Aaron
>>>
>>>
>>> Jamal Mazrui wrote:
>>>
>>>> Hi Aaron,
>>>> If I understand correctly, you have extended MSAA with additional
>>>> roles and by overloading other attributes with more data about the
>>>> UI.  Just curious -- does this affect compatibility with the User
>>>> Interface Automation (UIA) API in Windows Vista?  How much
>>>> rewoarking of the Mozilla accessibility model would be needed for
>>>> UIA?  Is that a direction you even intend to go at this point?
>>>>
>>>> Best regards,
>>>> Jamal
>>>>
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> dev-accessibility mailing list
>>> [hidden email]
>>> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-accessibility
>>>
>>>
>>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> dev-accessibility mailing list
>> [hidden email]
>> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-accessibility
>
> _______________________________________________
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>
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