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Add keyboard navigation

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Last seen: 6 years 3 months ago
Joined: 2011-12-19 05:16
Add keyboard navigation

I don't know if this is a bug or a feature request, but what I do know, is that keyboard navigation in the PA app isn't working.

If I press win+alt+spacebar, I'd expect the very next action (selecting an app) to be performed on the keyboard as well, but none of the possible keys seem to do anything. I'd expect the cursor keys to move the selection and I'd expect the tab key to visibly change focus between areas.

Basically, much like the windows vista/7 start panel.

Can this be added/fixed in the next version?

I have no idea which version I'm running btw, I don't see any version number anywhere... I do know I'm running Windows 7 x64 SP1.

Aluísio A. S. G.
Last seen: 7 years 11 months ago
Joined: 2010-11-09 17:43
Known bug Platform Bug Report and Feature Tracker

  • Platform not accessible to screen readers or keyboard navigation. This is considered a critical issue and a fix for this is nearly complete. [...]

As for version: Help -> About the Platform

Previously known as kAlug.

Last seen: 6 years 3 months ago
Joined: 2011-12-19 05:16
I don't understand why this

I don't understand why this isn't added in version 10.2? It's so apparant that if the thing can be started by pressing ctrl+alt+space, the next action would be accessible by keyboard as well, which it isn't. All that works is arrow up/down, w00t.

ctrl+alt+space is a shortcut that's kind of crampy to press with one hand, all while crefully not touching the windows key. Much easier to do with two hands, but then the right (or left) hand is away from the mouse and another physical move to the mouse has to be made in order to select an application.

I call this bad design.

The search box, that was (sort of) promised long ago is neccesary. It's not just convenient, it's neccesary to fix the design.

And I want win+space back. It worked for me, so I don't understand why this was disabled.

Ken Herbert
Ken Herbert's picture
Last seen: 3 hours 29 min ago
Joined: 2010-05-25 18:19
1. There already is some

1. There already is some keyboard functionality, but it does require mouse interaction as well. As well as the up and down keys, page up and page down also scroll the list. Shortcut keys for each menu option on the right have also been implemented. Holding Alt will show the key, but they can be activated with or without holding Alt. John did already implement a full keyboard-accessible version of the menu, but menu functionality was so slowed down by it that he had to scrap it entirely and start again, so it is coming, but are you really going to want to use a menu that has full keyboard accessibility, but takes minutes to do anything?

2. Win + space was disabled for numerous reasons. You can search if you really want to find out more as it has been discussed in-depth elsewhere.

3. It has been stated that the ctrl + alt + space shortcut will be configurable in an upcoming release.

4. The search function has been implemented for somewhere around a year now. When the menu is open, just hit / and you will have full search functionality. If you enter enough into the search box to only list one remaining app, hitting Enter will open that app.

Last seen: 6 years 3 months ago
Joined: 2011-12-19 05:16
1. Of course I wouldn't like

1. Of course I wouldn't like it if it's that slow... I just find it strange that we're at version 10.2 already and decent keyboard navigation is still not there yet. Make it like the win7 startpanel and it will be more than good enough.

2. Alright. But I still believe it should have been made into an option, even if that option were disabled by default. This is like reoving the power outlets from a room because some people had problems with them, while others still need them. But okay okay, it's been discussed elsewhere. I get it.

3. Sadly PA updates are few and far, so "an upcoming release" may just be a year in the future, looking at previous releases. I understand way. Just saying.

4. I know of the slash. It's just inconvenient (and not logical - slash to search?). I mean, that's litterally the only thing you'd need the keyboard for in a start(-like) menu. Clicking a button by pressing its access key (or alt key, or whatever it's called) is very logical and expected in application dialog boxes, but not in a start menu.

Also I have to mention, the arrow keys only scroll the list of application. If they *just* would select an application...

John T. Haller
John T. Haller's picture
Last seen: 19 min 41 sec ago
Joined: 2005-11-28 22:21

1. Keyboard navigation is already complete but we wanted to beta test it first. 10.2 didn't get a public beta test so it was just features we knew worked without issue, primarily to allow LibreOffice users to update and save them 100MB+ in bandwidth each. The issue has been outlined multiple times and is mentioned right on the public bug tracker where it is the top listed issue and listed as 95% complete. 11.0 Beta 1 (arriving today) will have keyboard navigation on the menu itself and an alternate selection method in the app store/updater since the checkboxes can't be keyboard friendly (the alternate selection method is not yet complete and may be in beta 2 a couple days later). We had to scrap the weeks of work done previously just for keyboard navigation and revert to an earlier codebase due to it being incredibly slow in implementation. This new keyboard navigation required custom creation of control groups associated together to be able to operate correctly with the keyboard, support popular screen readers, and allow us to keep the menu's look and theme-ability without having to revert to default Windows buttons or use a closed source component.

2. Search was removed by default due to users with international keyboards, not just 'some people', but a LOT of people. It's the exact same reasons that Firefox disabled find-as-you-type search by default and you have to hit a key to start it, coincidentally, either slash or F3, just like the PA.c Platform.

3. You'll note that 11.0 Beta 1 is dropping tonight.

4. It's exactly the way Firefox, Opera and other geek-friendly apps work (hit slash to start search). F3 is also supported (starts search in Firefox, Opera, Chrome, IE, etc). Find-as-you-type by default without being focused on a text box gets very messy code-wise with international keyboards which, again, is why Firefox ditched it several versions ago. The old version worked for English users but was hopelessly broken for everyone else. As an English user, you don't care. But a good 50% or more of our users do care. In the future, we will likely re-implement search with the search box always visible and selected by default (ala the Windows Start Menu) to fix this issue. That's the only way to fully fix it and have it work without specifically coding for every keyboard type in the world. But it will require redesigning the GUI a bit and adjusting the way theming works, which isn't a short order.

- The arrow keys will allow you to select an application in the beta. Until then, type enough of the name so the app you want is listed first and just hit enter to launch it.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

Last seen: 4 months 1 week ago
Joined: 2008-01-30 17:27
It works for me in an intuitive way


Is nice.

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