FF >= v57 a11y -- separate toolbars for Search & URL?

Justin Dolske dolske at mozilla.com
Mon Aug 14 18:27:39 UTC 2017


I think your question basically boils down to how to add toolbars with
WebExtensions.

AFAIK that isn't currently possible, but bug 1215064 covers the possibility
of adding such an API. The dev-addons is a better place to discuss the
future of WebExtension APIs -- https://mail.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-addons

As a workaround, you can use the bookmarks toolbar as a customization
target. (i.e. remove the bookmarks items from it, and add the search box to
it). Firefox 57 plans to remove the search box from the default UI, but it
will still be available for those who prefer a separate search box.

Justin

On Mon, Aug 14, 2017 at 9:34 AM, <alanpers at cluemail.com> wrote:

> Hi,
>
> With Firefox 57's move to 'next-UI' & WebExtensions, I've been told on
> #irc that modification of major UI elements will be "not possible" anymore.
>
> That was echoed in #firefox, #accessibility & #webextensions.
>
> To be clear, the message was that these existing/historical capabilities
> WILL be dropped, and going forward WON'T be available in core, and WON'T be
> available in webextensions.
>
> For an accessibility (a11y) population (vision-challenged ...), testing
> with current v57 (yes I know it's early), without those capabilities, the
> results are not good atm -- it's simply a non-starter until I can find some
> sort of manageable workaround.
>
> I was told to ask further here.
>
> Generally, persons with clinical vision disabilities need (both
> functionally, and within constraints, legally) to be able to access & see
> displayed data.
>
> Ideally, search and url fields 'should' have the width to display "lots of
> alrge-font chars" (meaning, terms, full url, path, etc etc), without
> scroll. And preferably without all sorts of 'cute' animation.
>
> Lots of FF extensions have provided that capability for years.  In this
> case, the extremely popular and widely used 'Classic Theme Restorer' has
> been a perfect solution.
>
> It tests well.  Because of its capabilities/flexibilities that got high
> marks with various user & legal constituencies, training, procedures, etc
> have been invested and put in place.
>
> IIUC, with FF >= v57, those capabilities go away.
>
> I'm aware of the a11y initiative @
>
>         https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/accessibility-
> features-firefox-make-firefox-and-we
>
> but it currently appears to miss the boat on field widths; for large font
> + bad vision, I need to separate Search & URL fields onto their own, 100%
> width toolbars.
>
> Using userChrome, I *HAVE* found how to relocate/reorder EXISTING elements
> (Tab bar, bookmarks bar), but not yet how to ADD new populatable toolbars.
> And, there was at least mention of the possiblity that userChrome may go
> away.
>
> So, the easiest way to ask the question is:
>
>         What timely, functional options do, or will soon, exist in FF
> going forward?
>
>         If not this list, where is the right place to have this
> conversation to help affect change in FF, so we don't "lose" to proprietary
> options from Apple & Microsoft?
>
> Alan
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> firefox-dev at mozilla.org
> https://mail.mozilla.org/listinfo/firefox-dev
>
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