How to install and use non-Roman character functionality

Getting a computer to display and allow the input of non-Roman characters is a two-step process. Typically, a language kit with fonts must be installed, which provides a default keyboard layout/input method. Users can then customize the keyboard layout/input method according to their needs. If you only need to read webpages, you may not need to worry about the second step.

Mac installation | Mac use | Windows installation | Windows use


Macintosh Installation

OS 9

Installing non-Roman character language kits (keyboard layouts and fonts) with OS 9 is simpler than any Windows or previous Mac. Follow these steps:

  1. The language kits are part of the base software installation disk that came with your machine. Put this into your machine and choose Mac OS Install
  2. On the first window, click continue, then click select to choose the location of your system software, assuming your machine's hard disk is selected by default
  3. Click on add/remove software, then scroll down to the language kits portion. Check this box and use the pulldown menu to choose customized installation
  4. In the next window, choose the language(s) that you want and click install.

Note: the language kits for languages that use the Roman alphabet are unnecessary unless you intend to use non-QWERTY standard keyboard layouts. See the Roman diacritics page on how to type accents and other diacritics with the QWERTY standard keyboard.


Macintosh Use

To access other languages and keyboard layouts, the Mac uses a pulldown menu at the upper right of the screen that is installed with the language kits. Sometimes the user will be required to both change the keyboard layout with the keyboard menu AND change the font in the document.

Choosing customize menu allows you to specify which of the installed keyboard layouts/languages to show. Note that it is not necessary to choose a Spanish/French/German/Italian (i.e. Roman alphabet-using language) keyboard layout to type the accents and diacriticals that those languages need--choosing those layouts rearranges the keyboard and will confuse the QWERTY-accustomed typist. See the Roman Diacritics page for more information.

Languages that use Non-Roman characters have varied input methods to adapt to the limitations of standard keyboards. Usually, the standard keyboard layout is designed to match orthographical & phonological rules of the language, and so probably does not correspond phonetically to QWERTY.

See the Roman diacritics page on how to type accents and other diacritics with Spanish, French, Italian, and German.


Windows Installation

2000/NT

There are two steps to enabling non-Roman character functionality with Windows 2000: installation with administrator privileges, and setting up input locales (keyboards) on a per-user basis. Besides administrator access, you will need the Windows 2000 system installation CD to do this. For detailed explanation, visit Installing Other Languages into Windows 2000 by Robert Smitheram at CET-Middlebury.

98

Windows 98 installation information coming soon


Windows Use

Windows use information coming soon

Note that it is not necessary to choose a Spanish/French/German/Italian (i.e. Roman-alphabetic language) input locale to type the accents and diacriticals that those languages need--choosing those locales rearranges the keyboard and will confuse the QWERTY-accustomed typist. The US International keyboard is adequate for most Roman-alphabetic languages. See the Roman Diacritics page for more information.

Languages that use Non-Roman characters have varied input methods to adapt to the limitations of standard keyboards. Usually, the standard keyboard layout is designed to match orthographical & phonological rules of the language, and so probably does not correspond phonetically to QWERTY.

See the Roman diacritics page on how to type accents and other diacritics with Spanish, French, Italian, and German.

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September 2001