Re: Unicode character entry

On Tue, Jun 1, 2010 at 4:43 AM, John Jason Jordan <johnxj comcast net> wrote:
> On Tue, 1 Jun 2010 02:36:36 +0300
> Simos Xenitellis <simos lists googlemail com> dijo:
>>The purpose of IBus is to accommodate special scripts with complex
>>writing rules, which are a handful, such as Chinese, Korean, Japanese
>>and Burmese.
>>All other scripts, such as anything Latin-based, Cyrillic, Greek,
>>Thai, Arabic, etc stay for the foreseeable future with the default
>>input method, based on GTK+ (for gtk+ applications).
>>Apart from Fedora, Ubuntu uses IBus if the user specifically selects
>>to write in one of the 'complex scripts'.
>>IBus does not replace what you get with gtk+ so I would not consider
>>the 'non-IBus' input method as old. The precise wording would be that
>>IBus is special, and is to be used for those cases that require
>>complex writing systems, such as Chinese.
>>IBus replaces something called SCIM.
>>The keyboard layouts found in System/Preferences/Keyboard/Layouts come
>>from the X.Org project (generic GUI project for Linux systems) and are
>>used by default by both GNOME and KDE applications. GNOME applications
>>have Ctrl+Shift+U, and I think that KDE applications have a similar
>>shortcut, which are independently implemented.
>>Both GNOME and KDE programs can be switched so that they work with the
>>IBus input method (select in Settings and re-login), which in this
>>case the System/Preferences/Keyboard/Layouts are replaced with the
>>IBus keyboard layouts.
> I am confused because I have no idea what iBus is, or any of the other
> components mentioned.
> I am a linguist and I need to type characters from several Unicode
> pages (IPA, combining diacritics, and a few others). Over the years I
> have learned the codes for the characters that I use - for example, if
> I need an esh I type Ctrl-Shift-u + 283. Keyboard layouts are great
> if you need to switch from one language to another, but I cannot use a
> keyboard layout because there are too many characters - roughly 140,
> plus about 20 optional combining diacritics.
> If I upgrade my Fedora 11 to Fedora 13, will I still be able to use
> Ctrl-Shift-u + Unicode value? If so, do I have to change the default
> settings somehow?

The Ctrl+Shift+u + UnicodeValue feature is available in gtk+
applications which means that it works in Fedora 13 and future
versions of the distribution.
The "complication" may appear  if you enable Chinese, Korean, Japanese
or similar complex "input method" support. In those cases, the input
method is changed to IBus which currently does not appear to support
the Ctrl+Shift+U UnicodeValue feature.

However, in your case where you require IPA support, the situation
appears to be easy;
the gtk+ library already has a special input method for IPA, which, in
addition, supports Ctrl+Shift+U UnicodeValue at the same time.
To test,
1. open the GNOME text editor (in Applications/Accessories/Text editor)
2. in the editor area, right-click and select Input Methods; select
IPA from the list.
3. now type as you would in IPA. For example, ae→æ, : → ː
I am not familiar with more details of IPA; I suppose all characters
work and you may have to experiment a bit to find the key

How to you write IPA in OpenOffice? If you right-click in OpenOffice
there is no InputMethod menu. For gtk+ apps like OpenOffice, you can
run in the terminal

export GTK_IM_MODULE=ipa

and then start 'oowriter' from the same terminal window. The IPA input
method will be selected.

If you want to make IPA the default input method in your distribution?
You can add 'GTK_IM_MODULE=ipa' in /etc/environment and restart.

Their might be a GUI way to better do this in your distribution; I
haven't checked for this recently.

You also mention combining diacritics; as far as I know, there are no
keyboard layouts with combining diacritics yet so you can only do them
with ISO 14755 (Ctrl+Shift+U). However, I believe that you can use
precomposed characters; if the character (with some accent) is shown
at then GNOME can type if as long as
you select an appropriate keyboard layout. Such appropriate keyboard
layouts are the US English International and the default British
English ones.


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