german keyboard layout

Georg A. Duffner McDuff at
Fri Feb 6 17:22:15 PST 2009

i would like to start a discussion about the german keyboard layout.
contrary  to english and french (and most of the other) layouts, there
is currently no way to use standard german xkb layouts to  type
quotations typographically correctly.

three quotation schemes are used  in german language: two side by side
generally and one specially in switzerland. as for switzerland there is
a separate layout, i will omit this case, although i know that even
there approvements might be made.

the remaining two quotation schemes used in german language (cf. duden)
are » (opening qu. mark) « (closing qu. mark) and „ (opening qu. mark) “
(closing qu. mark).

you might say, that « and » exist on the keyboard and “ does so too. but
there is no way to enter those signs, necessary to type consistantly
german texts: „ › ‹ (you have to either use angle marks or straight
marks, you may not mix them).

consequently, i propose to expand german layouts (except swiss). for not
to brake too much, the simpliest changement would be to exchange
standard latin quotation marks on <alt gr>+<v> and <alt gr>+<b> by
corresponding german ones (3d level: „ and “ and 4th level: ‚ and ‘)

of course, it would be nice to keep the ” signs somewhere, as not only
me needs them when typing english, spanish, italian etc. texts, which,
for typing, wouldn't need an extra layout. so, i would shift them to  –
until now unused – <alt gr>+<n>, consequently ’ to <alt gr>+<shift>+<n>

the next questions would be how about endash and emdash, which i would
like to have included, as for typographical reasons it would be a great
help to have this globally included, but let us start with quotation marks.


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