We’ve had the ability to add navigation options via the
link element for accessibility purposes for some time now. But as with so much of what ails, user agent adoption has been slow in coming, especially for Internet Explorer.
Users of Mozilla may already be familiar with the Site Navigation Bar, which can be set to appear when additional
link related options are available. What’s interesting to me is how quickly I became dependent on this toolbar! It’s clear that many users who don’t need the accessibility assistance will also benefit from having navigation options via the browser, enhancing the user experience of those web sites using
link for accessible navigation.
But for users of IE, this feature has never been available, until now. Thanks to Thomas J. Gritzan, folks using IE for Windows can download the free
<link> Navigation Toolbar. It’s easy to install and even comes with some unusual, useful extras such as a pop-up blocker and a Google search bar.
For an excellent article by Sander Tekelenburg that describes how to use
link for navigation, check out “Navigating the WWW”. The article eloquently describes the challenges and working solutions related to
link based navigation.
Both the toolbar and article are currently available in English and German.
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