Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Firefox (OS X) Tip-Of-The-Day: Hacking the tab focus on form elements

This is not CSS, but it does drive me batty when I’m creating forms.

Does this bother you, too? When you tab a form in Firefox (on a Mac) it skips the radio buttons, checkboxes, and select drop-down fields. Hate that!

I recently found the hack to fix this:
  1. Type about:config in the URL bar.
  2. In the Filter field, type tabfocus.
  3. Double-click on the accessibility.tabfocus preference.
  4. Change the value to 7.
  5. Restart your browser and tab away.

If accessibility.tabfocus isn’t in the list (it wasn’t in mine):
  1. Right-click on Firefox.app and select Show Package Contents
  2. Open /Contents/MacOS/greprefs/all.js
  3. Insert pref("accessibility.tabfocus", 7); (I put it where all the other accessibility prefs were declared)
  4. Restart your browser and tab away.

It turns out this tabbing thing is handicapped by default in Mac OS X. However, changing it is simple through System Preferences > Keyboard & Mouse > Keyboard Shortcuts. At the bottom of that window, it says:

Full keyboard access
In windows and dialogs, press Tab to move the keyboard focus between:

[ ] Text boxes and lists only
[ ] All controls

So there. Just check and you’re done. So my question is, why is it handicapped in the first place??


Anonymous John D. said...

Because Mac users don't know how to use the keyboard to do things like click the button, only type. So they would be confused if the keyboard accessed a button...

Tue. Aug. 04, 02:49:00 p.m. 2009  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home