RE: Dutch IJ character

From: Rick Cameron (
Date: Mon Apr 28 2003 - 20:14:11 EDT

  • Next message: Markus Scherer: "Re: Dutch IJ character"

    AAMOF, one can type and using the US-International keyboard layout by
    pressing 'C and 'c.

    -----Original Message-----
    From: Doug Ewell []
    Sent: Monday, 28 April 2003 15:06
    To: Thomas Milo;;; Peter Constable
    Cc: Chris Pratley; Gert-Jan Johannes; Gerard Unger
    Subject: Re: Dutch IJ character

    Thomas Milo <t dot milo at chello dot nl> wrote:

    > What I did ask for is a Dutch-International kbd with all the features
    > of the US-International one, but tailored for Dutch by the addition of
    > ,C > c-cedilla and I+J > IJ using the same dead key mechanism.

    The US-International keyboard already has a way to enter
    (Shift+AltGr+,) and (AltGr+,). Those AltGr keys really aren't that bad.
    You get used to them, and they don't have the drawback that normal sequences
    can no longer be typed without an intervening space.

    A dead-key sequence where "," (comma) is the first character sounds
    difficult to use. Since most commas in ordinary text are followed by a
    space, the typist would have to type TWO spaces after the comma much of the
    time to avoid accidental composition. Likewise, "I" as a dead key would
    cause an annoying delay after every "I" is typed. And asking the major
    vendors to completely overhaul the standard dead-key mechanism to use
    backspace-and-replace seems like, as Thomas might say, a non-starter.

    BTW, this thread marks the first time I've ever heard that / is used in
    Dutch. Michael Everson doesn't list it in his "Alphabets of Europe."

    > Here in the NL popular publications advise Dutch users to avoid using
    > the Dutch kbd, and to select Locale= Dutch and KBD=US-International
    > instead to avoid the hardware mismatch (real or imaginary) associated
    > with the Dutch Kbd.

    You mean that because the Dutch use American hardware, the standard Dutch
    keyboard driver (which has an @-sign on key E00 and a slash on key
    E11) doesn't match the keycaps? Fine, then there's nothing wrong with the
    idea of creating a new Dutch national keyboard layout.

    I'd still like to know what key on Dutch typewriters was assigned to the IJ
    digraph. If the answer is "none, they just type I and J," then everything
    can still be accomplished in the computer age without the precomposed

    > I am not fully convinced IJ should be treated as digraph. The glitch
    > is that it capitalizes as a whole, and that older users try to emulate
    > it with Y. And, it cannot be broken apart so that ICE CREAM on a
    > corner shop is
    > IJ
    > S
    > never
    > I
    > J
    > S
    > And, the telephone directories put IJ and Y in the same sorting
    > position.

    All of this can be accomplished with appropriate locale-dependent settings
    instead of character encoding. (Sorry for using the L word.)

    -Doug Ewell
     Fullerton, California

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