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Web page authors use OnMouseOvers to display text or images when a visitor moves the mouse pointer over a particular part of the page. The Freedom Scientific Product Overview sample page provides an example of a way in which OnMouseOvers are often used. On this page, when a user moves the mouse pointer over one of the product names, which are actually graphic links, the page displays a brief summary of the product. When the user clicks the graphic, the page takes them to the Freedom Scientific Web site to provide additional resources.

NOTE: Two different things happen here depending on whether you simply move the mouse cursor over the graphic or actually activate the link.

JAWS says, "OnMouseOver" when you move to an element with an OnMouseOver. OnMouseOver is an attribute that Web page authors add to HTML elements to enable OnMouseOver functionality.

Open the Freedom Scientific Product Overview sample page. Read through the page first. It is relatively short. Notice that after the first heading, there are four OnMouseOver links which JAWS identifies. Continue reading and you will hear a brief bit of text that begins "This page is designed to demonstrate the use of the OnMouseOver attribute. When a mouse user moves the pointer over the image links ..." Go ahead and read through this text. When you activate an OnMouseOver in the next series of steps, this text will change on the screen.

Activating an OnMouseOver with JAWS actually moves the mouse cursor over the graphic for you. You do this by pressing INSERT+CTRL+ENTER when you hear JAWS announce OnMouseOver links. To see how JAWS interacts with OnMouseOvers on Web pages, do the following:

  1. Go to the Freedom Scientific Product Overview sample page and press DOWN ARROW until you move to the one of the graphic links with an OnMouseOver.
  2. Press INSERT+CTRL+ENTER to activate the OnMouseOver for that link.
  3. JAWS announces that the page has changed at a certain line. On the screen, the brief descriptive text that summarized how to use the page with a mouse is replaced by text that describes the product.
  4. Press J, type the line number JAWS spoke, and press ENTER. JAWS moves you directly to the place on the page where the new text is displayed. Using the Jump To Line command (J) in this manner allows you to read new information that appears on the page when you activate an OnMouseOver. Take a moment to read through the new text.
  5. Press SHIFT+J to move back to the graphic link. Holding down SHIFT when using the Jump To Line command moves you back to your previous location on the page.
  6. Press ENTER to activate the link. This takes you to the Freedom Scientific Web site. You can press BACKSPACE to return to the previous page.
  7. Try moving to the other OnMouseOver links and following these same steps for more practice.

JAWS Tip: Notice how pressing ENTER and pressing INSERT+CTRL+ENTER can produce very different results with some Web page elements. Pressing INSERT+CTRL+ENTER simulates the effect of moving the mouse pointer over the element, while pressing ENTER simulates the effect of clicking the element.