A New Input Technique for Accented Letters in Alphabetical Scripts
Uwe Waldman - Max-Planck-Institut für Informatik
Input methods for accented letters in alphabetical scripts should satisfy a number of (not fully compatible) requirements. In particular, they should be easy to learn and to memorize, they should induce little mental and physical stress, and they should make a large number of characters accessible using few dedicated keys and short key sequences.
We describe a new input technique called "SITMO" (Single Iteratable
Trailing Modifier), and compare it with traditional modifier (dead
key) and compose input methods. SITMO uses one dedicated
To evaluate the method, we have inspected sample texts in 28 European languages. For the great majority of these languages, there exist replacement schemes that are both mnemonic and allow us to access derived letters with an average number of keystrokes very close to 2. With respect to the length of key sequences, SITMO is thus comparable to modifier techniques, and significantly better than compose techniques (with key sequences of length 3 and more). On the other hand, the set of characters accessible using SITMO is much larger than for modifier techniques. Furthermore, like compose techniques, SITMO requires only a single dedicated key, whereas modifier techniques require usually one key per accent.
(Further information can be found at http://www.mpi-sb.mpg.de/~uwe/paper/AccInput-bibl.html)
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