A reminder of how to add a localized accessible name to a button – without incurring any new localization costs

I was looking at a pretty important app the other day, and considering how many of the buttons in its UI didn’t have accessible names. This problem is interesting in that it renders the app useless to many customers, and yet it can often be quick ‘n’ easy to fix.   Knowing there’s a problem…

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Why can't Narrator find the buttons in my HTML Windows Store app?

Hi, I had a reminder the other day about how important it is to keep both the visual and programmatic interfaces in mind, when building our apps’ UI. This time the UI related to an HTML Windows Store app, not a XAML app. At the top of Ten questions on programmatic accessibility, I asked “The…

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Ten questions on programmatic accessibility

Hi, I’ve been thinking about a few of the questions I’ve heard over the last three months, on the subject of programmatic accessibility. Some of these questions relate to the fundamentals of accessibility which affect any apps with UI, and some would only affect app devs who build their own custom controls. I find the…


Can I tell Narrator how I want a particular character to be pronounced?

Someone recently raised the interesting point that they found the Narrator screen reader pronounces “3 + 1” as “three plus one” when interacting with their app, yet it pronounces “3 – 1” as “three to one”. They were curious as to whether they could tell Narrator to pronounce the ‘-’ as “minus”. Today there is…


Allowing Narrator gestures to zoom at the explorable map

While making the demo video associated with Updating the explorable map to add support for scrolling with a screen reader, which shows how to zoom in and zoom out on the map using Narrator, I did feel that it was pretty tedious to have to swipe so many times to reach the Zoom buttons. Narrator…

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Using UI Automation to explore a map

A few weeks ago I was having coffee with a colleague who’s blind, and I asked him about exploring a map. He said that he’d like to be able to move his finger over a map of the US, and have the name of the state beneath his finger spoken. By doing this, he could…