Keycodes >0xff

Josef Spillner spillner at
Tue Jun 14 19:00:55 EEST 2005

Am Dienstag, 14. Juni 2005 17:42 schrieb Jim Gettys:
> I challenge you to show me a keyboard with more than 248 actual keys on
> it.

He he.
Nevertheless keyboard input is still not where it could be. For instance, many 
APIs are not unicode safe and export functionality keys (ctrl, shift, alt) 
together in one list with value keys (a, ä, ó). This leads to inconsistent 
APIs like in Qt or SDL or the Linux kernel, where KEYCODE_A is defined but 
KEYCODE_Ä is (obviously) not.

I routed around the problem in a Qt/embedded port writing my own keysym 
generation code:
But I do see it as one of the fundamental free desktop principles to unify 
system and desktop keyboard configuration - something which technically 
doesn't exist yet on e.g. many popular Linux distributions, where X11 
keyboards are configured separately from command line keyboards.
There are now things like SDL_EnableUNICODE() but on the other hand there's 
lots of legacy code out there. If it was me, I'd simply erase the value-based 
definitions from the API and let the apps break compiling until fixed, 
because they're broken on their own in a way.


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