Case study: Mary writes to Jean or French with a QWERTY keyboard

Mary lives in the Canadian province of Alberta. Her boyfriend Jean lives in Saint-Louis-de-France, Québec. As a real Frenchman, Jean cant speak any foreign languages, especially English. So when Mary writes to Jean, she should do it in French only (well, she could write in English, but when this happens, Jean has to ask his petite sister to translate the lettre; the petite usually wants to get a bar of chocolate for doing this task, which is neither good for her weight loss nor for her teeth). Marys problem is that she has no French keyboard. She could order it online from a store in Montréal, but her dad, a descendant of Western Ukrainian immigrants, is very sceptical about «those separatists» in the East. So if he found the keyboard, Mary would be in even more trouble.

Type special characters with shortcutsShe tried using the French keyboard layout with her QWERTY keyboard, but found it very odd how French letters were arranged. Apart from that, some common characters changed their locations too, for which reason she could not find them anymore. After searching the Internet for a solution, she discovered the ЮNIK utility (who would have doubted it?). In spite of the unclear English description, Mary, being a clever girl, managed to understand what the writer meant, and now she can use proper hotkeys (≠ dead keys) for typing in French on her QWERTY keyboard without changing the US keyboard layout to somewhat else. In other words, she got the keyboard generating French characters, while all other letters and symbols are still being produced by the keys originally designed for them. Here are the hotkeys used by Mary for typing her French (love) letters:

Modifier key
Modifier key + Shift

 Modifier key

 Modifier key

(German letters are displayed here just in case Jean doesnt approve fit for Marys roadmap for life and career. As a fall-back, she already met Herrn Müller from Oppersdorf in Oberpfalz, who also seems to be a promising party to her roadmap implementation. Then, for statistical reasons, Mary would also need the § sign, because German (divorce) laws are divided into sections called «Paragraphen».)

Since Mary has done all the work, you neednt do much more than remap any key to the special, ЮNIK-related modifier key (do not forget to reboot the computer thereafter) and then run the unik.exe file. The default unik.ini file already contains all the necessary assignments.

P.S.: All characters in this story are purely fictional and not one marriage broker or divorce lawyer got a penny.

P.P.S.: What to do if I cannot keep in mind these fancy assignments, especially the ones to the 1, 2... keys?
   Solution 1: Train your brain.
   Solution 2: Printer + scissors.

P.P.P.S.: Since some republicans cannot stand the Fleur-de-lis symbol (U+269C), it has not been included, but you can do it yourself.


Copyright A. Rumyantsev, 2011 MailBox