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    French version

    • Started by endaka
    • 5 Replies:
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    • From: London
    • Registered: 02-Feb-2007
    • Posts: 24

    Following discussions with DreymaR elsewhere, here's an idea of what a French version of Colemak could be like. (Sorry for the HORRIBLE image, I'm definitely not a GIMP expert. I'll make a nicer one for the final version! - at least you can easily see what's changed with this one...).

    colemakfris0.png

    (1) It's not based on AZERTY. AZERTY is horrible (why would you need to use Shift to type a dot?) and I think it would be rather hard to use without Caps Lock (AZERTY actually requires using Shift for numerals).
    (2) My idea was to preserve as much of standard Colemak as possible and not to make it too hard for US keyboard owners by making the extra key too important (this is pretty selfish, I bought my MacBook in the US).
    (3) Ç is still at AltGr-C. Ù is done via AltGr-R + u, but I guess another option could be to make the ` on the extra ISO key a dead key in which case it could be used for that. As ù is only used in one word and a not hyper frequent one at that, I think that's fair enough.
    (4) The ability to type Icelandic is lost which I hope is not too much of a problem.
    (5) I'm not sure about the relative placement of è and à - any usage statistics anyone? My guess is that è is more frequent but I'm not sure at all, and also that the circonflexed/tréma-ed characters together (using the dead key) are more frequent than è and à.
    (6) Too much strain on the right pinky? Any solutions to that at all?

    I would be grateful for comments... and for DremayR to deliver on his promise to implement the final version (when we thrash it out) for Windows ;)

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
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    I'd put the ù on key 102, that sounds like a good idea.

    I use number keys for most of the accents myself. Seems like you have two umlaut keys (the one to the right, and AltGr+D), so by removing the one on D and moving the H one to for instance the number 6 key you could get back the ð and þ (I use them, but of course not many do).

    The right pinky issue could be interesting. I'd probably move the è and à in one step so that the ¨^ key is at the extreme right; that's how it is on my own keyboard. Unless the dead key is very frequent, this would make more sense to me at least.

    Nice work! Looks like the French Colemak could be very nice. As for my promise, I've got at least one more week's vacation left before I can start anything; we'll have to see after that.

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    • From: London
    • Registered: 02-Feb-2007
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    I think you are right about the ¨^ key. Just found some statistics (here: http://www.algo.be/ergo/frequences.html) which show that è is marginally more frequent than à which are both more frequent than all the ^¨ characters together. I'll move it to the far right.

    Now one thing that bothers me a bit is that the statistics I found show that é is actually very frequent indeed, more so than V and Q (!); I'm almost tempted to swap é and the comma—what do you think? From a consistency standpoint it's clearly not great but otherwise the right pinky will suffer quite a lot and it's already quite strained by having to service all the accents and the Enter key...

    Not sure about having a separate key for ù though. As I said it's really rare - if I was to choose, I guess I'd rather go for ç on the ISO key. However I think that my idea of putting a dead ` there is probably better as this way you can get both the ù and the ` character which is otherwise lost. That way I would also have an excuse to kill the AltGr-R dead key and put the thorn there, as well as put the eth on AltGr-D as you suggested—though then again there would be no way of writing ù on US keyboards.

    Hm...

    EDIT: Or maybe just put the thorn on AltGr-X?

    Last edited by endaka (27-Jul-2007 19:00:07)
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    • From: London
    • Registered: 02-Feb-2007
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    A more or less final version?

    colemakfrui6.png

    EDIT: The Mac version is ready, how do I upload it? DreymaR, what about the Windows version? I for one need it quite desperately :)

    Last edited by endaka (21-Aug-2007 20:29:13)
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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
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    Sorry I've been delaying this implementation. Meanwhile, have you seen the following:
    http://www.kbdedit.com/manual/examples. … 20keyboard
    http://www.reseau.org/keymap/

    Any of those boards give you any ideas/inspirations? Just thinking they may have done something right.

    Incidentially, the idea of using CapsLock (SGCaps) as an extra shift key for accents and suchlike, albeit in conflict with the brilliant CapsLock-for-Backspace idea, is intrigueing. I think the Swiss may be onto something.

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    • From: London
    • Registered: 02-Feb-2007
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    My layout does allow you to produce accented caps like the others. I've been using it on my Mac for some time now and am quite happy with it. What about the Windows version? :)

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