alternate input methods (redux)

New features which should be implemented in Porteus; suggestions are welcome. All questions or problems with testing releases (alpha, beta, or rc) should go in their relevant thread here, rather than the Bug Reports section.
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Ahau
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alternate input methods (redux)

Post#1 by Ahau » 06 Mar 2012, 14:55

Hi all,

There has been some discussion on the boards lately regarding alternate input methods in Porteus. These are programs (examples: gcin, ibus, uim, scim) that enable users to enter characters in other (non-latin) languages, such as chinese, japanese, etc. Rather than continuing to spread the discussion over threads in other areas, I'm starting this one here in the Development section, with a hope of getting something accepted into either the module repo or the Language-Selection-Tool

I've been working on getting gcin and scim built for Porteus and would like some user input as to which works better for users. My initial impression (though I don't speak any of these languages) is that gcin provides more variety for inputting Chinese (and seems to be favored in Taiwan), but scim seems to handle a broader variety of languages. Scim is present upstream in Slackware, which means it would also be less work to maintain (gcin would require maintenance of a porteus slackbuild, which I have mostly finished).

Here are the modules:

32-bit SCIM: http://porteus-xfce.googlecode.com/file ... n-i486.xzm
64-bit SCIM: http://porteus-xfce.googlecode.com/file ... x86_64.xzm

32-bit gcin: http://porteus-xfce.googlecode.com/file ... s-i486.xzm
64-bit gcin: http://porteus-xfce.googlecode.com/file ... x86_64.xzm

I should note that scim did not work for me right away -- I had to add some additional packages (namely, scim-bridge, but I added a bunch of others to add as much support as possible); I also had to make two files executable: /etc/profile.d/scim.csh and /etc/profile.d/scim.sh -- when installed via txz2xzm, they are set without the executable bit turned on.

If you have other suggestions please let me know. I should note that these packages should be used one at a time, as they will conflict with each other (they each need the same environmental variables set, so one will always take precedence over the other). I think both could be included in the repo if the maintainers approve them, but if we're going to add an IM to Language Selection Tool, I think we should choose one and run with it, and the other can serve as an alternate.

Note that for most languages you'll need a font that supports displaying characters in that language. While we're on the subject, if you all have font suggestions for languages that you speak, that would be helpful as well (must be free; GPL would be best).

In order to start typing in with either program, start up an application and press ctrl+space. This will load up the interface and you can start typing. You can click on the panel icons to select your desired language/dialect.

Note that these modules work with all Desktop Environments's for all GTK and QT4 apps that I have tested so far; however, they do not work with QT3 apps in any DE -- so if you're using 32-bit (Trinity), you'll need to use GTK apps (e.g. lxterminal, abiword, leafpad) instead of QT apps (e.g. konsole and kwrite). Firefox is GTK and appears to work out of the box.

@brokenman, I'm beginning to wonder if trinity's qt3 includes support for immodules? There was a patch for qt3 written back in 2004 and it looks like someone revived it for trinity, here: http://code.google.com/p/trinityqt3/ but I don't know if the folks at trinity already included an implementation or some other approach to this.

Thanks, all!
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Re: alternate input methods (redux)

Post#2 by brokenman » 07 Mar 2012, 11:34

Since qt3 is no longer actively developed, the folks at Trinity have stopped using it in favour of tqt (Trinity Qt) which is basically a bridge renaming of files so that it can exist in peace with qt4 and make use off it's future development. I believe the immodules patch was integrated at the start of Trinity developed (qt-3.3.8c) but will find out for sure. A new API was released a few weeks ago (and again today) and tqt3 has been bumped to tqt3-3.4.

The final release candidate fr Trinity is not due out for another few months ... and we are using a development version right now. It is constantly evolving (and i mean daily builds break for me) so i am trying to keep it to the base minimum for stability.

I would like to integrate your final solution into the Language selection tool. Opening Porteus for non-latin based languages would be a good thing.
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Re: alternate input methods (redux)

Post#3 by Seq_Res » 22 Mar 2012, 06:38

fcitx4.04 (fidoslax xzm) works fine with XFCE version (and language-select-tool generated locale), but does not
work with kde and lxde versions, instead, locale and fcitx modules (by applewolf) converted from slax is okay for
these versions. great XFCE !

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Re: alternate input methods (redux)

Post#4 by Ahau » 23 Mar 2012, 20:14

great to know, thank you Seq_Res! There's probably a configuration file that is absent in the fidoslax xzm (or perhaps it just needs to be made executable).

We're planning to include an option to download scim in the next release of Language-Selection-Tool, and also several fonts that should add support for almost all languages.
Please take a look at our online documentation, here. Suggestions are welcome!

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