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Access Keys

visitors (intermediate)

Access keys (See also Wikipedia:access keys) are keyboard shortcuts for tasks that would otherwise require a mouse. They are part of markup that may exist on any webpage. On Pm Wiki steps have been taken to make it easier to use access keys throughout a site, and to make it possible to adjust key assignments to accommodate different languages and preferences.

Using access keys in different operating systems and browsers

Access keys require you to hold down two or more keys.

  • on Windows with Internet Explorer, press ALT + the access key
  • with Firefox, press SHIFT + ALT + the access key
  • on a Macintosh, press Ctrl + the access key (applies to Firefox, Safari, Omniweb, Internet Explorer)
  • with Opera press Shift+Esc to enter (or exit) access-key mode.

Exceptions exist for specific browsers, and specific versions. For example,

  • Internet Explorer requires that the Enter key be pressed at the end of the sequence for versions 5 and up under Windows, but not under Macintosh (where access keys were not supported until after version 4.5).
  • Firefox versions 1.5 and earlier simply use Alt, while Firefox version 2.0 uses Shift+Alt.

Note, in cases of conflicts between the keyboard shortcuts assigned by browsers and access keys assigned by links and other markup on webpages, many browsers, including Mozilla, Netscape and Internet Explorer, allow access keys to override the browser defaults and require a different sequence to continue using overridden browser assignments (typically, by pressing and releasing the Alt key, instead of holding it down).

Access key assignments in this Pm Wiki installation

The following is a list of the currently defined access keys for built-in actions. Remember that the letters identified below must be used together with the combination listed above (depending on your operating system and browser). Note that some actions do not have a corresponding access key by default.

KeyFunction
eedit
hhistory
crecent changes
ssave page
usave and keep editing
dsave draft
ppreview page
 print
 view
 emphasized text
 strong text
ak_texteditjump to edit textarea (when in edit modes)

admins (intermediate)

Customizing access keys

Pm Wiki uses the same "phrase translation" methods for access key mappings as it does for internationalization. This makes it possible for administrators, skins, language translators, and visitors to all influence the way that specific keys are mapped to actions.

See SitePreferences and Site.Preferences for more information and a template.

Note that some skins (e.g., Lean) don't use the translation mechanism. In this case one must edit the template file itself in order to change the access keys.

By convention, the translation phrases for all of the access key actions start with the characters "ak_", so that the page variable "$[ak_edit]" is replaced by the access key for editing as defined by the current preferences, language, skin default, or site default.

Implementation of access keys

Access keys are implemented in html as optional parameters that can be added to links and many other types of markup.

Example: <a href="http://example.com" accesskey="x">Example</a> would create a link to example.com that could be triggered by clicking on the linked word "example" or using the access key Akey+x. That same action key link could be created in Pm Wiki markup by typing %item accesskey="x"%[[http://example.com|Example]], like this: Example. Try it and see if it works. Note that this A Key?+x access key only works this way on this page, because it is simply a shortcut for accessing the link that exists only on this page.

The list of access key assignments in default Pm Wiki installations generally work throughout a site because links have been created in Pm Wiki skins and editing screens that incorporate access key parameters using the access key translation phrases. One location where those links can be viewed is Site.PageActions. That page contains the links that the default Pm Wiki skin, and many other skins, use to generate links such as "View" "Edit" and "History" that appear on most pages (other than editing screens). Each of the links in that page also has an %accesskey=$[ak_xxx]% declaration in front of it, which enables a specific access key for that link.

How can I change the keyboard shortcuts for editing and saving a page?

See Customizing access keys.

I have a Wikisite Site.Sidebar which is embedded in the skin template. The use of %item accesskey="x"%[[Groupname/Sitename]] doesn't work here. Has anyone an idea why, and what I could do?

Use just %accesskey="x"%[[PmWiki.PmWiki]]%% (no "item", closed with %%).

This page may have a more recent version on pmwiki.org: PmWiki:AccessKeys, and a talk page: PmWiki:AccessKeys-Talk.

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Page last modified on July 07, 2009, at 09:48 PM