On-screen keyboards (was: Re: Input methods at the age of Unicode)

From: Marcel Schneider <charupdate_at_orange.fr>
Date: Sun, 19 Jul 2015 15:10:40 +0200 (CEST)

On 18 Jul 2015, at 16:44, I wrote:

> You might wish also to use the Windows on-screen keyboard which allows to see what's exactly on each key while typing on whatever physical keyboard, without any need to have the keycap labels match the layout. This on-screen keyboard is built-in, only it does not support Kana shift states.

Although the support of Kana shift states by the Windows OSK is not complete, it is *not* completely missing. Even more, it works fully if the Kana modifier is on Left Alt (as on my actual French delta layout), I found out testing the OSK again today. My opinion was coined when testing the OSK with a Windows keyboard layout where the Kana modifier is implemented on Right Control. Hitting or clicking Right Ctrl you see nothing happen except the Ctrl turning to white. However, when hitting or clicking the letter key, you get effectively the Kana layer character. Now on my delta, even the key labels are updated with Kana characters when Kana (Left Alt) is pressed.

Please do not understand the following as a mere criticizing. I think that suggestions on Microsoft products are most useful because of the widespread use of the products. So I would add some suggestions that if agreed may help improve user experience.

+ The dead keys are actually not highlighted on the OSK. Perhaps it would be useful to get them looking somewhat different.

+ When hitting a letter key, no visual feedback is provided. I suggest that the feedback be the same when pressing the key as when clicking the key.

+ A few option settings should be provided, among which the additional display of the physical keycap labels (see my e-mail on 18 Jul 2015 at 22:34), the highlighting of the pinned keys (F and J), the display of the middle line, things allowing users to see which finger to use for a given key.

Probably there may be other suggestions. As a UI issue, it might however not be followed up on this List.

Received on Sun Jul 19 2015 - 08:11:37 CDT

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