German topic: Deutsche Umlaute, US-Tastatur

I started using two devices (Librem 14, Librem 5 + nexdock360) with US keyboard layout.

I’m used to a german keyboard layout and I have that on my external keyboard.

I’m typing blind. I do not care which letter or symbol is printed on the keyboard, because I rarely look at it.

I’m pondering the question how I could remap keys on the US keyboard to have a near german keyboard experience. For the umlauts this is obvious, but where do I place the characters/symbols that I can’t type anymore, because their keys are occupied by umlauts.

Does anybody know some work already done in this regard? A source of good ideas?

Just to clarify: is the problem the physical keyboard oh L14? On both L14 and L5 you can specify German keyboard layout (even if you use English as language). On L5 the terminal keyboards haven’t been yet localized (in hindsight it’s odd to have “normal” and “terminal”) but that can be done, more keys added and modified (see here).

I’m interested in the general subject because I too want to have my native characters available and have trouble due to US layout being used here and there.

I routinely switch between German and English with the English layout on my L13. I added German on Gnome with Settings->Region and Language->Input Sources. There is a little icon in the task bar that lets me switch between the languages. I just have to remember which keys have the umlauts, Eszett, etc. (Actually, it has gotten bad enough for me that I routinely type 'Shift-8 ‘*’ for “(” rather than using Shift-9 as would be usual in English.)

If one clicks the icon, it will show the keyboard layout, so you can find the other characters. I sometimes have to do that for “-” or others I do not use routinely.

I will not swear to it, but I may have also uncommented the German I wanted in /etc/locale.gen. It is uncommented but that may have happened automatically. You may want to check after you are done.

Sorry I cannot help you with the L5 but it soulds like the previous poster knows about that.

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I’m not worried about technical details (I know how to remap keys using systemd and there is information around to do that modifying the bios of the L14).

My point is that the US-keyboards do have less keys and if I use german layout on them I do not know how to type ‘’, ‘|’, ‘<’, ‘>’ and so on - the symbols on the keys then used by the german umlauts.

I was wondering if there is some remapping experience out there to start with when trying to put these symbols on other keys…

Ah, so, since mapping isn’t the challenge, this is about: “to which keys should the German extra characters be mapped in this abnormal setup (physical, L14 keyboard that has less keys than normally because it’s US)”? Is that about right?

This not exactly what you were looking for - more like halfway between character codes and mapped characters - but I’ll ad it here just in case someone else might find it useful: - the “compositor/compose key”. A lot of other stuff about linux characters there too.

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Thanks, that is what I’m doing at the moment also. But I’d like to get away from it since it slows down my typing and thinking.

Another option is Ctrl+Shift+u hexdigits space - which can get you the accented characters (needed if you are using a “US” keyboard) and the missing punctuation characters (needed if you are using a German keyboard). :wink:

Some people use cut-and-paste, depending on the editing environment. (That won’t work for typing without looking however.)

Some people might use some kind of macro functionality, depending even more on the editing environment.