Keyboard issues with Dyalog Unicode for Windows

Installing APL, Sorting out Fonts, Keyboards, etc.

Keyboard issues with Dyalog Unicode for Windows

Postby Vince|Dyalog on Tue Apr 22, 2014 12:14 pm

I paste below links to our FAQ items for typing APL Characters on Dyalog for Windows.

Unable to type any APL characters in Dyalog (Unicode)?

Dyalog (Unicode) Problem typing APL characters on Windows 8?

Problems with entering ⍲ (Nand) under Vista and Windows 7

Why does my Unicode Dyalog stop giving APL characters?

Windows 10: adding Dyalog Unicode IME as an input method

If you have any problems following or questions about the advice in the above web pages, please email Dyalog Support.

[Edited 11 Sept 2015 to add link for Windows 10]
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Oct 01, 2008 9:39 am

Re: Keyboard issues with Dyalog Unicode for Windows

Postby Chuck Norcutt on Wed Jun 22, 2016 11:36 pm

I'm totally new to Dyalog APL. I was an active APL programmer using IBM versions from 1968 to 1985. Then I went to operating system development for 10 years. Now I've been retired for many years and am looking at APL again after a 30 year hiatus. I've been gone for a long time but I still have my trusty IBM Model M clicky PC keyboard which has for many years been fitted with APL2 key caps. I've dusted it off and cleaned it up and am starting to use it with Dyalog APL. The problem is trying to get keyboard and screen to match. For the most part they do but there are two problems I don't know how to solve.

1) One problem is simple character/key mapping mismatch. For example, in Dyalog APL left and right arrow are on adjacent keys with brackets/braces. In APL2 both left and right arrow are the same key, that with left bracket/brace.
2) These same two keys also exhibit the second and perhaps more difficult problem. The Dyalog APL keyboard has all of its keys accessible with a two level shift scheme... CTRL key or CTRL + Shift key. The APL2 keyboard has 9 keys which require a 3 level shift since there are 3 different APL characters on these keys. After 30 years I have to admit not being certain myself how it was done. But the PC APL2 keyboard has an F8 key labeled APL which was clearly used to switch modes and a 3 level shift would not conflict with other things.

Dyalog APL also has some functions new to me that don't appear on the APL2 keyboard but I can type them easily enough and don't miss them (at the moment) since I don't know their function. But at least they don't conflict with something else. They seem to be allocated to previously unused key/shift combinations on my APL2 keyboard.

But I suspect that after so many years I'm not the first one to try and use an IBM PC keyboard with APL2 keycaps on Dyalog APL. So my first question is whether there is an existing solution for me. If not can you point me to a source that tells me how to remap my keyboard. I have seen mentions of that in Dyalog documentation... one even mentioning a document by name (which I have now forgotten). From the context it was not clear if this was a Dyalog or Microsoft document. But it doesn't matter. After Googling both Dyalog and Microsoft sites I have not been able to locate the specific document. I assume it's possible to do this but I just don't know the mechanics of where to start.

Any help or tips will be greatly appreciated.

Chuck Norcutt
An ancient APL'er trying to get at least a bit more modern
Chuck Norcutt
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2016 9:24 pm

Re: Keyboard issues with Dyalog Unicode for Windows

Postby Vince|Dyalog on Thu Jun 23, 2016 9:14 am

Hi Chuck,

Dyalog Support will be contacting you by email to discuss what ways forward we can find for you.

Once we reach a conclusion, I'll write back on these Forums with what details about the approach that we have taken.


Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Oct 01, 2008 9:39 am

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