While developer tools extension APIs are being redeveloped for Microsoft Edge–which upon completion will allow Deque to create an aXe Edge browser extension–Sonarwhal provides another opportunity for developers to test for accessibility in Edge, Chrome, and jsdom. Sonarwhal is a “linting tool”, meaning developers use it to validate quality before shipping code. But it spins up a web browser for you, helpful for testing accessibility rules in the way axe-core requires, with CSS styles and scripts applied. This helps to eliminate false positives generated by typical linting tools.
Sonarwhal is a similar project to Google’s Lighthouse auditing tool, which also uses axe-core. In this case, Sonarwhal is less positioned at generating best practice PWA’s (Progressive Web Apps) and more at general web development. There are all kinds of websites and web applications out there supporting multiple platforms, and they all need accessibility. So these tools are a great starting point for developers looking to test for accessibility with axe-core.
If you’re interested in trying aXe for yourself to test accessibility one page at a time with a lower barrier to entry, check out our free browser extensions and playground on axe-core.org. For multiple pages and advanced configurations, our WorldSpace Attest developer ecosystem might be the ticket.