Re: SV: FPDAM 1 to ISO/IEC 9995-3 for *international* keyboard support of the EURO SIGN

From: Alain LaBont\i - 2 (
Date: Fri Dec 12 1997 - 16:09:32 EST

A 20:41 12/12/97 +0100, Kent Karlsson a écrit :
>Hi Alain!
>I'm a bit puzzled...
>I have no problem in understanding what levels 1 and 2 are (no-shift and
>shift), likewise I find no problem with groups 1 and 2 (no-alt and alt,
>I believe).
>But what is level 3? I have never come across a (character) keyboard
>where the shift-keys had more than two "levels" (physically), up and
>down, or were sensitive to how hard they were pressed...
>Since keyboards usually have two shift keys, I could imagine three
>levels via: 1. neither shift key down, 2. either but not both shift
>keys down, and 3. both shift keys down. Is that the intent? Or is that
>just a stupid idea I just got ;-)?
>Sorry for not having the text of any of the parts of 9995.
> Kind regards
> /Kent Karlsson

[Alain] :
All European keyboards have 3 levels:
no shift key
shifted key
<AltGr>-shifted key

Only American keyboards have only one kind of shift key (even if there are
usually 2 of them, one on the left, one on the right).

Now the term 'Shift' is deprecated in ISO/IEC. Because there are 2
'shifts', because there is a great confusion in terms with AltGr, Altcar,
AltChar, and with the distinct function that is Alt, and this in many
languages, we now talk about:

level 1 - obtained by depressing a key directly
level 2 - obtained by actuating the Level 2 Select key while depressing
          an alphanumeric key
level 3 - obtained by actuating the Level 3 Select key while depressing
          an alphanumeric key

Level 2 Select has a white upwards arrow as its international symbol
    / \
   / \
  /_ _\
    ' '

Level 3 select has a double upwards while arrow as its international symbol:
    / \
   / \
  /_ _\
   / \
  / \
  ¯¯' '¯¯

[Kent] :
>I recall that you wrote a part of 9995 regarding hex input of Unicode
>characters from keyboards. But I don't remember what initiated that
>kind of input. Can you please remind me. And does anyone implement it?

[Alain] :
This is not a part of 9995 (which has 8 parts, including a part on letter
allocation on telephone [a billionaire industry in North America!] and
banking teller machine keypads).

It is ISO/IEC International standard 14755. It has been published by ISO
Central Secretariat at the end of the summer. It also deals with other
methods than the method you're talking about. I know that IBM asked me
recent info about this, and it seemed urgent. The idea of this standard is
to enable entry of all UCS characters on any national keyboard, while
recognizing that the primary keyboard layout and the primary input method
has to be optimized nationally, which means that a national keyboard layout
or a national input method only gives access to a limited set of the UCS.
That said, for global communications, any character of any language has to
be accessible in any country, even with the poor-man input method. The
international standard is just about that. The first version (first CD)
were going beyond the current IS in terms of character data integrity
respect and provided extra input methods but two countries requested that
we limit ourselves to poorer requirements. So did we, and we then got full
international consensus. But the methods presented are quite powerful
anyway, standardized, with some extra recommendations not normative.

Alain LaBonté

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:20:38 EDT