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Broken shortcuts on gnome with dvorak

September 21, 2010

Let’s say you’re one of the three people who uses the dvorak keyboard layout and Gnome on Linux. (I apparently have a weakness for, how shall I say it, esoteric choices. c.f., my Dylan-related posts.) You try to use the Keyboard Preferences control panel to setup your keyboard layout switcher and suddenly notice your terminal windows keep disappearing on you. WTF?

You do some fiddling and eventually discover that even though your keyboard is nominally in dvorak layout, the keyboard shortcuts are still using qwerty layout and Control-d was really sending Control-d instead of the expected Control-e. Although some people claim this makes sense, I can only assume this was a mistake and those people are on crack. (Okay, maybe not crack…maybe they just don’t touch type, but is it really that different?)

It turns out that there’s a relatively easy solution IF you have both the “USA” and “USA Dvorak” layouts listed in your “Selected layouts”. Make sure “USA Dvorak” is listed first and “USA” is listed second. You can do this by removing the “USA” layout and re-adding it.

Intuitive, right?

As an added bonus to this solution, the keyboard switcher widget in the task bar now calls the “USA” layout “USA2” and calls the “USA Dvorak” layout “USA”.

Happy dvoraking.


From → Computers, Linux

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