keyboard question
Thread poster: Evangelia Mouma

Evangelia Mouma  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 17:54
English to Greek
+ ...
Apr 24, 2007

Hello everyone!
I have an English keyboard for my PC and when I change it to French or Italian some keys change as well, that is, in French for example, to write 'a' I have to press the key 'q'. I suppose this is the same for everyone, or not?
And in order to find where the French letters are (or the Italian, or the German), I mean the e accent circumflex and the like, I have to press every key or try every possible combination.
There must be an easier way, right?
Enlighten me, please
TIA
Evangelia


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Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:54
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Here's the French one, anyway Apr 24, 2007

There probably is an easier way, but for the keyboards I use, I have made out skeleton keyboards and filled them in by pressing each key, as you say, to find where everything is, and then turning it into a Word file. I print copies of these keyboards and use them for reference, though for the languages with which I am most familiar, I now rarely have to refer to them. Here is my French keyboard:



[Edited at 2007-04-24 21:36]


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Claudia Krysztofiak  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 18:54
English to German
+ ...
pictures of several keyboard layouts Apr 24, 2007

The English Wikipedia offers an article that shows many different keyboard layouts:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keyboard_layout

Maybe this can help you overcome the trial and error strategy ...


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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 11:54
Partial member
Spanish
+ ...
Keyboard Layouts Apr 24, 2007

... when I change it to French or Italian some keys change as well, that is, in French for example, to write 'a' I have to press the key 'q'. I suppose this is the same for everyone, or not?

Yes, that's how it's supposed to work.

And in order to find where the French letters are (or the Italian, or the German), I mean the e accent circumflex and the like, I have to press every key or try every possible combination.
There must be an easier way, right?

Well, if you don't know where every key goes, you can print out the keyboard layouts or bookmark a website with the keyboards to familiarize with the ones that you need to use. It just takes practice but after a while it's very easy to switch around from one layout to the next one.

Here's a website with different layouts: http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/817-2521/6mi67tj40?l=zh_tw&a=view


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Robert Tucker
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:54
German to English
+ ...
Keyboards Apr 24, 2007

Similarly to Jack Doughty I created word-processor files of various keyboards. I have the four pages of the .pdf at the link below printed out and sitting in two plastic pouches beside my computer.

Keyboards

(Italian, German, French, Spanish, Greek, Portuguese, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Czech, Russian, Devanagari, Gurumukhi, and Arabic)


[Edited at 2007-04-24 22:04]


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Evangelia Mouma  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 17:54
English to Greek
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Apr 25, 2007

Many, many thanks Jack, Claudia and Claudia! You saved ... my fingers!

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Henrik Pipoyan  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:54
Member (2004)
English to Armenian
Hi Evangelia Apr 25, 2007

There are special stickers with letters that you can attach to the keys. There are even built-in bilingual, trilingual keyboards. For example mine has English letters in black and Russian letters in red. If you use English and French, I think you could use the stickers or a bilingual keyboard.

But if you don't often use other languages, you can also type these letters without changing the keyboard layout. When I need to type a French text, I usually type it without all these accents, in English letters. When you change the language of the file to French, the spell-checker underlines all these words, so you can just right-click and select the correct spelling with accent. If it doesn't work, you can always open Insert > Symbol and select the accented letter. Or, if there are only a few letters not existing in English, like the French accented letters, you can just create an "auto-replace" combination. For example you can go to Tools > AutoCorrect Options; open the AutoCorrect tag; type a rare letter combination, like ,e, in the Replace filed and ê in the With field. After that, each time you type ,e, the computer will change it to ê.


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Evangelia Mouma  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 17:54
English to Greek
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Henrik Apr 25, 2007

Up to now I didn't have to write long French or Italian texts, so I used the Insert > Symbol trick. But I have to edit a long French file now, therefore I have to learn the French keyboard. And as Claudia said, it is a matter of practice.
Thanks again for the tips.
E.


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Robert Mouris  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 18:54
French to German
+ ...
Buy a second keyboard Apr 25, 2007

If you need the second keyboard layout a lot, you can buy a new keyboard. Unless both keyboards have an old-style PS2 connection, you can connect both at the same time to your system. It works with USB connections and with cordless connections. The only disadvantage with an office full of keyboards is that there is no room left for the translator.

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Christel Zipfel  Identity Verified
Italy
Member (2004)
Italian to German
+ ...
Try the command "osk" Apr 25, 2007

If you have to type only little text, this is a good way.

In Windows (it works with all operating systems, as far as I know) go to Start -> Run... and type in "osk" (without quotation marks). Then the keyboard that you have set is displayed on your screen. You can switch between several keyboards as well.


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Evangelia Mouma  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 17:54
English to Greek
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Apr 25, 2007

Thank you all for your advice.
Evangelia


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