No Firefox that’s a bad Firefox! You don’t eat all the RAM! #SuchMonday #SuchCoffee
How I Get Things Done
I now have a checkbox on my add new post screen which lets me choose whether or not to send posts to Jetpack subscribers, which means I get to have the best of both worlds. Thanks for that filter, Jetpackers.
Anyone who has ever used GitHub with a screen reader knows how painful it can be. This makes contributing to, or even reporting bugs to, projects hosted on the service difficult, and there are a lot of those projects that are large and popular and that could definitely use the help when it comes to their accessibility issues.
Luckily, as long as you’re using Firefox or Chrome, (sorry Internet Explorer users, no help for you), There’s a solution for this problem.
Greasemonkey,(and its Chrome equivalent, Tampermonkey), allows you to run user-created scripts in your browser so that you can change the way a website behaves. This includes making it more accessible.
[Tweet “Greasemonkey is like Smart Web except you don’t have to pay for an SMA to get access.”]
Wait, are you saying website creators don’t have to make their sites accessible?
Absolutely not. What I am saying is that when you have no control over whether or not a website like GitHub is accessible, and you have no choice but to use said website, Greasemonkey is the next best option.
To install Greasemonkey, navigate to the tools menu by pressing alt+t. Then, arrow down to addons. Alternatively, you can press ctrl+shift+a to open the addons manager. Next,tab to the list view and make sure “get add-ons” is selected. After this,tab to the edit field type “Greasemonkey” in the field and press enter.
Once you press enter, you can either tab to the list of add-ons and select the one you want to install, or tab through the sort buttons and sort the results accordingly. Once you’re in the list of add-ons, arrow to the one you want to install and then tab to the “install” button and press enter or space.
You’ll need to restart Firefox for the Greasemonkey add-on to take effect. You can restart when prompted or restart later.
Make GitHub more accessible
Once you’ve installed Greasemonkey, install the Greasemonkey script for GitHub by Jamie Teh of NVDA fame. As long as you have Greasemonkey installed, you can press enter on the link to the GitHub repository and Greasemonkey will happily install it. It will ask you if you’re sure, warn you about how user scripts can do bad things, but this one’s fine so go ahead and install it.
The GitHub site is magically a lot less painful
Once you have this script installed, the GitHub website becomes a lot easier to use with a screen reader. This is a tool you definitely have to have in your toolkit if you’re doing anything with GitHub, regardless of whether or not you’re using it to host your own repositories. If it makes your life easier, consider
I was browsing through Twitter, and came upon an article I thought might be interesting and thought-provoking reading. Ironically, it’s an article about the moral failure of the computer science community. So I open the page, and I’m reminded of why I have no sympathy for, nor can I empathize much with, online advertisers.
It comes down to the fact that almost all of you aggressively scrolljack.
This goes for ads, as well as those trendy newsletter sign-ups that steal cursor focus away from the content you’re promoting and drop it in your sign-up form or advertisement, like I’m suddenly going to want to stop what I’m doing and do what you want me to do: Buy whatever you’re advertising or sign up for your newsletter.
In order to get back to what I was doing in the first place, (reading your content), I have to resort to the following process.
- Open the page, press “H” to jump to the headline. Maybe read a couple of lines.
- Page refreshes, or some other scrolljacking event happens. Get dropped back to the top of the page.
- Press ctrl+f to bring up the find dialog.
- Think of a word or phrase which hasn’t occurred multiple times within the content, in order to hit my target on the first shot, and beat the next page refresh or scrolljack.
- Read the next couple lines.
- Repeat steps 1 through 5 until I either get to the end of the content, or, depending on how long the content is, quit at some point because I’m tired of repeating myself and I’m frustrated and don’t want to fight with the keyboard, the screen reader, and the browser any longer.
I might be able to empathize with online advertisers if I weren’t trading my own sanity in the process.
The worst part of all this is that it has nothing to do with accessibility, but extremely basic user experience. I’d really like to think it comes down to lack of awareness, but I’d have to engage in a hell of a lot of mental gymnastics to do that. So I have no choice but to chalk it up to a lack of concern for users.
And if I can plainly see that you don’t care about the experience of your users when it comes to something as simple as reading your content, what makes you think I’m going to believe you’ll care more after I’ve purchased your product or signed up for your newsletter?
One of the best features of WordPress for content creators is its drafts feature. Drafts gives you a way to start a post, and if you can’t finish it at the time you started writing it, you can always come back to it later. But what if you’re like me and you have a ton of drafts that have piled up?
Dust them off
If you’re participating in any kind of blogging or writing challenge, or even if you’re just trying to increase your posting frequency, those abandoned drafts are a great place to start.
You’ll find ideas you forgot about
I like to say that my draft posts are where all my better ideas live. I usually sit down, start working on something, and then save it for later, only to forget it’s even there. Some of them are almost complete, and need a conclusion, or some editing, and others are in scratch-pad form. But they all contain the nucleus of an idea or tutorial I thought would make a great resource at the time of writing. If you find yourself in the same position, before you start thinking of and drafting new posts, take a look back through your already-existing drafts and see what you’ve got there first.
Purge when necessary
While you’re in there, go through what you’ve already got and decide what’s worth keeping and reviving and what needs to be thrown away. If you move one of your drafts to the trash, and you decide later that you want to keep it, you can always restore it to your drafts, as long as it’s within the first thirty days of the move to the trash.
The deciding factor for me is whether or not the draft has some body text. Often, I’ll start writing, give the post a title, and then abandon it. So when I’m going through my drafts as I do periodically, if I find bodiless drafts, those are usually the ones that I discard. Anything else will get a closer look.
Consider your editorial calendar
You may find that you’ll have an easier time finishing your draft posts if you spend some time determining where they fit in your editorial calendar. If you don’t have an editorial calendar, and you plan on writing a lot, you should consider creating one. If you already have one, and you’re either sticking to it already or you want to start, determine where your drafts fit in that calendar, and then, based on when you publish certain kinds of content, set yourself a deadline to finish each type of draft by the next time you’re supposed to publish that particular kind of content. If you’ve got a lot of drafts that you’ve decided are worth keeping, this will make the culling less daunting.
Your draft posts can be an excellent place to find ideas when you’re dealing with writer’s block, and they can also be time savers. When it’s time to write new content for your site, look there first. You may find that you’ll save yourself some time, because you’ve already got material to work with.
In this post, I’ll show you how a blind person inserts media into a WordPress post while using a screen reader. In this example, I’ve inserted some audio, but this also applies to other media such as images or video.
For screen reader users, there’s a quick audio tutorial that you can use to start inserting media if you’re not doing so already.
In this scenario, I’m uploading media, not choosing from what’s already in my media library.
First, open the media panel
Below the field labeled “enter title here,” I find a link that says “add media.” I press space on that.
Next, I move down to the bottom of the screen by pressing ctrl+end. There, I find the “browse” button.
Because I want to upload media from my computer, I press enter or space on that.
A standard “choose file” dialog will open. I use standard controls/methods to find the file I want to upload from my own computer, and then tab to the “open” button and press enter or space on that.
Now, insert the media.
Next, I’ll insert the media I’ve just uploaded. To do this, I first make sure the window is maximized.
Next, I orient myself by returning to the bottom of the screen.
Then, I arrow up until I find the “insert media” link, and press space on that.
If my screen reader starts babbling at me, I know my media is inserted.
Tomorrow, I’ll show you how I work with what I like to refer to as the finer details of media.