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GNOME Accessibility Team

3.4 Issues ("Must Haves")


{i} This page lists:

  • the accessibility issues which are currently present in GNOME 3

  • which we feel must be addressed -- and can be solved, if given sufficient resources

/!\ Team members should:

  • keep existing entries up-to-date
  • ensure all entries remain uniform in contents and appearance

(!) For those things which we also think really need doing for 3.4, please see our 3.4 "Nice To Haves" page.

A11y Team Modules

Please note: While GNOME Shell is not an A11y team module per se, much of the work being done to make it accessible to users who are blind or visually impaired is being done by core A11y team members. Therefore, we are placing GNOME Shell here so that individuals seeking to contribute by fixing "accessibility bugs in other modules" look to the items listed under "Other GNOME Modules" first.

GNOME Shell Magnifier

  • Key Contacts: JosephS

  • Work Remaining - Updated: 13-October-2011

    1. GNOME Shell Magnifier does not track focus or the caret.

      • Impact: GNOME Shell Magnifier users must either use Orca, or regularly move the mouse to see the active area. Screen magnification solutions in other platforms do not have the requirement of using a screen reader.

      • Bug(s): 647074

      • Next Action: To be identified.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JosephS

    2. GNOME Shell Magnifier does not have a Universal Access dialog for configuring zoom options.

      • Impact: GNOME Shell Magnifier users cannot easily configure the zoom options available to them.

      • Bug(s): 643086

      • Next Action: UI reviewed 13-July-2011, response sent 22-July-2011, working on changes.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JosephS

    3. Inverse video, brightness, and contrast enhancements.

      • Impact: Benefits certain types of low vision users.

      • Bug(s): 639851 (gnome-shell), 645665 (gsettings-desktop-schemas), 641553

      • Next Action:

        • gsettings-desktop-schema: patch reviewed (2011-June-22), and new patch submitted (2011-June-30). Waiting for response.
        • gnome-shell: Waiting for code review.
      • Person(s) Responsible: JosephS

GNOME Shell (Other than Magnifier)

  • Key Contacts: AlejandroPiñeiro, DanWinship

  • Work Remaining - Updated: 13-October-2011

    1. Not all items in gnome-shell have names.

      • Impact: Without a proper accessible name, users who are blind have no way of knowing what they have navigated to. This is most noticeable in the overview, where one has no way of knowing the applications one is arrowing amongst. It can likewise be seen when Alt+Tabbing, where one has no way of knowing which application one is switching to until it has already been chosen. Of less serious impact, but nonetheless present, is the fact that the state of the switches cannot be determined non-visually.

      • Bug(s): 634016

      • Next Action: AlejandroPiñeiro will implement the required accessibility support.

      • Person(s) Responsible: AlejandroPiñeiro

    2. Roles in gnome-shell need to be properly used.

      • Impact: Because everything is claiming to be of ROLE_PANEL or ROLE_UNKNOWN, users who cannot see what is on the screen have a much more difficult time determining the nature of the objects they are in and what the associated functions and navigational options are.

      • Bug(s): 648598

      • Next Action: AlejandroPiñeiro will implement the required accessibility support.

      • Person(s) Responsible: AlejandroPiñeiro

    3. Notifications are inaccessible.

      • Impact: Users who are blind have no way of knowing that a new notification has come in, nor can they access its contents.

      • Bug(s): 648645

      • Next Action: AlejandroPiñeiro will implement the required accessibility support.

      • Person(s) Responsible: AlejandroPiñeiro


  • Key Contacts: JoanmarieDiggs

  • Work Remaining - Updated: 13-October-2011

    1. Orca does not present notifications which gnome-shell pops up.

      • Impact: Notifications are even less distracting than the designers think they should be.

      • Bug(s): None yet

      • Next Action: Joanmarie will investigate the present state and work with AlejandroPiñeiro regarding what remains to be done in GNOME Shell and/or Clutter.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JoanmarieDiggs

    2. Orca currently "drives" gnome-shell mag; it should instead co-exist with it and other magnification tools such as Compiz eZoom.

      • Impact: The majority of magnification users do not require the full support of a screen reader; the majority of screen reader users do not require magnification users. Thus most users are getting overhead and UI elements that do not apply to them.

      • Bug(s): 647076

      • Next Action: Remove support for gnome-shell mag caret and focus tracking from Orca.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JoanmarieDiggs

    3. Orca should provide access to more complex documents rendered via WebKitGtk.

      • Impact: All but the simplest of content displayed by Empathy is not accessible to users who are blind.

      • Bug(s): None filed at this time.

      • Next Action: Joanmarie will complete the necessary work in Orca.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JoanmarieDiggs

    4. Orca's UI does not conform to the expectations of the Design Team.

      • Impact: It is not easy to find or start Orca if you do not already know how to do so.

      • Bug(s): 652416

      • Next Action: Joanmarie will seek input from those with design expertise who can provide feedback in a timely fashion to the Orca team. Based on this feedback, the Orca team will then propose changes for the GNOME design team to consider.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JoanmarieDiggs

Other GNOME Modules

These are some of the bugs in other modules which are blocking us and our users, but which are NOT regressions per se. We have a dedicated page for regressions.


  • Key Contacts: Benjamin, Matthias

  • Work Remaining - Updated: 27-October-2011

    1. Focused tables initially lack ATK_STATE_FOCUSED.

      • Impact: Screen readers are likely to ignore events received from the table because they believe the user is not in that table (and is thus likely not interested in those events)

      • Bug(s): 654405

      • Next Action: Bug requires triage

      • Person(s) Responsible:

    2. Pressing certain keys within a GtkTreeView causes accessible window create and destroy signals to be emitted.

      • Impact: Presently, none which we are aware of. HOWEVER, that is due to the fact that the one primary GNOME AT which provides access to Gtk+ apps is not attending to window create and destroy events. Should that change, this bug might confuse ATs and cause them to do the wrong thing.

      • Bug(s): 657577

      • Next Action: Prevent these signals from being emitted.

      • Person(s) Responsible: Benjamin

    3. The pop-up window in a GtkEntryCompletion lacks an accessible connection to the associated entry.

      • Impact: ATs don't know for certain if the events received from the pop-up window are actually relevant to the user (and thus worthy of being presented).

      • Bug(s): 658148

      • Next Action: Implement a fix.

      • Person(s) Responsible:


  • Key Contacts: Christian Persch

  • Work Remaining - Updated: 27-October-2011

    1. Accessibility: reading text while scrolling off by one character.

      • Impact: Assistive Technologies such as Orca present the wrong text (chopping off the initial character, for instance)

      • Bug(s): 657960

      • Next Action: Needs to be triaged.

      • Person(s) Responsible: AlejandroLeiva

    2. terminal a11y problem.

      • Impact: Running gnome-terminal with accessibility support enabled can cause gnome-terminal to suddenly exit.

      • Bug(s): 627591

      • Next Action: Needs to be triaged.

      • Person(s) Responsible: AlejandroLeiva

    3. [a11y] Text selection information not properly returned.

      • Impact: Orca is not able to present the currently selected text in the terminal (which a user might wish to know for the purpose of copying and pasting)

      • Bug(s): 456639

      • Next Action: AlejandroLeiva stated he will submit a patch.

      • Person(s) Responsible: AlejandroLeiva

    4. Accessible's caret position sometimes wrong.

      • Impact: Assuming this bug can still be reproduced, presumably ATs will not be able to present the correct information when using vi.

      • Bug(s): 166637

      • Next Action: Determine if this bug can still be reproduced.

      • Person(s) Responsible: JoanmarieDiggs

Accessibility/ThreePointFour/Issues (last edited 2011-10-27 18:28:03 by AlejandroLeiva)