Overview of the GUI Accessibility mode

Today's applications often use a Graphical User Interface (GUI), which provides an intuitive user interface using visual controls such as windows, icons, and buttons. In addition, the GUIs used for visual interfaces and their visual effects are continuing to evolve. This shift to more advanced GUIs affects not only desktop applications, but also Web applications that use Flash or DHTML.

In order to use a GUI application with a screen reader, the application and the screen reader must work together. For the Windows® environment, Microsoft® Active Accessibility (MSAA) was created as an accessibility support technology, and standardization work is underway for an extension to MSAA called the IAccessible2 interface. However, because there is no supporting software system to effectively and efficiently evaluate implementations using MSAA and IAccessible2, making GUI applications accessible is very difficult.

The GUI Accessibility mode of aDesigner uses various techniques to efficiently support GUI accessibility checking both for GUI applications and for webpages. With the GUI Accessibility mode, the accessibility information that the GUI controls inside of an application or inside of a webpage can be checked automatically. In addition, the GUI Accessibility mode displays the visual content of the GUI in different ways, such as flat text, a tree outline, or with detailed properties. Combinations of these functions are effective in helping application developers find problems.

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