[I18n]XKB layout names (fwd)

Katsaloulis Panagiotis grad0307 at di.uoa.gr
Thu Apr 5 00:55:13 EEST 2001

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 04 Apr 2001 08:11:23 +0100
From: Markus Kuhn <Markus.Kuhn at cl.cam.ac.uk>
To: i18n at XFree86.Org
Cc: Katsaloulis Panagiotis <grad0307 at di.uoa.gr>
Subject: Re: [I18n]XKB layout names 

David Dawes wrote on 2001-04-04 02:25 UTC:
> [I'm cc'ing this to i18n at xfree86.org to see what feedback there is about
> the xkb layout names.]
> >1 We have noticed some problems though: the language was defined as "gr"
> >instead of the proper "el"
> There's some inconsistency with the XKB layout names, but I think most
> are named by country rather than by language.  It'd be good if we could
> make them more consistent.

I think it should be GR, not el.

The current names are indeed quite messy:

  amiga ataritt be bg br ca ca_enhanced cs ctrl czsk de de_CH dk dvorak
  en_US es fi fr fr_CH gb group hu is iso9995-3 it jp keypad lock no pc104
  pl pt ralt ro ru se th us us_intl

en_us versus gb, etc.

Keyboard layouts are usually defined by national standard bodies, and
these are associated with countries, not with languages. For instance,
US and GB have different keyboard layouts (GB has a £ and ¬ key for
instance while US lacks AltGr) but the same language. Therefore, I'd
suggest to use the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code of the country whose
national standards body published the relevant layout standard. Note
that this is not necessarily the country in which the keyboard was
purchased [Austrians use the same DIN keyboard as Germans for instance
(-> DE), but the Swiss don't (->CH)]. In some cases, there are several
national keyboard standard alternatives, in which case a qualifier
should be attached, for example a characteristic English word out of the
title of the relevant standard. To follow the locale naming practice,
the qualifier should perhaps be attached after an @ sign.

ISO 639-1 language codes should generally be written in lower case,
ISO 3166-1 country codes should be written in upper case.

Hopefully all this will go away soon with USB keyboards from which we
can download the recommended layout as a keycode <-> UCS value table


Markus G. Kuhn, Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge, UK
Email: mkuhn at acm.org,  WWW: <http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~mgk25/>

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