inserting accented characters

Signe Marie Sanne signe.sanne at
Tue Dec 10 04:48:01 EST 2002

>Signe.  Thank you for going to the trouble of doing that.
>I think that this indicates that it is some setting in Windows 2000. 
>Given that one cannot know what the user's settings are (and that as 
>an application developer one probably shouldn't rely on being able 
>to reconfigure these), and given that different OSs use different 
>keyboard-combo shortcuts to display these characters, I think that I 
>am right to go with my character-to-button palette mapping.  I want 
>to have a technique that is easy for the user to use and that is 
>cross-platform and that is independent of any settings on the 
>machine on which my app runs.
>It also has the benefit that it can be used for other purposes e.g. 
>for applications where users have key phrases that they need to 
>insert often - these could be placed in the list and then generate a 
>selection palette.
>Incidentally, I remember earlier on you seemed to think the palette 
>idea was not the way to go.  Was this because you thought it 
>important to protect the screen real-estate or because you knew I 
>would run into technical difficulties on transferring the text 
>between stacks?  I think I will eventually get round the final 
>technical difficulty I am having.  But if not, I will start to look 
>at ways of putting the list of 'international' character on the card 

Hello again Bernard (I thought you were asleep at this hour? Are you 
in Europe?)

You really got me thinking. First of all, what you say about settings 
in Windows 2000, I do not think is the case. Will, please, users on 
other Window platforms chime in and confirm the use of the accented 
letters in standalones? Or is it the English keyboard which creates 
the problem, but you do have the two accent keys available?

Only if you are sure the users can not make use of the accent keys, 
then I would go for a palette or a specific card. The most user 
friendly way would be to have the users click on an accented letter 
and let scripting insert it in the text field. But I would use a 
palette or a card for the rest of "strange" letters, such as c 
cedille, o+e in French, tilde in Spanish.

If you then want to give the user the possibility to "save" key 
phrases, I would have made a button "Insert new phrase" or "Insert 
new accented letter" (on a card). This would open an Ask window in 
which the user writes what he needs, and then your scripting would 
add this to the list, or insert a new button  or whatever you choose. 
Now I think this is getting complicated, so I'll stop here.

1. amanuensis Signe Marie Sanne      e-mail: signe.sanne at
Romansk Institutt                            tel:  +47 55 58 21 27
Oysteins gt. 1                                   
5007 Bergen

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