Thursday, June 17, 2021

macOS 12: Localized Keyboard Shortcuts

Thomas Clement:

If you are using a non-US keyboard, prepare yourself to relearn a number of keyboard shortcuts in Monterey as the OS now translates shortcuts to the position of the key on the keyboard rather than the actual shortcut key.

Some seem uncomfortable with the idea but it actually fixes a number of shortcuts that were picked only because they work nicely on a US keyboard layout but are not so great or even terrible on other layouts. But yes this is going to be confusing and disrupting for awhile.

Actually some of the key translations do not preserve the position on the keyboard and pick some other keys. For example ‘cmd ;’ translates to ‘cmd )’ for me which are different keys on the keyboard. I’m not sure what the logic is.

Most disturbing thing is it translates ‘cmd 0’, ‘cmd 1’ and ‘cmd 2’ to ‘cmd À’, ‘cmd &’ and ‘cmd É’.

These are the same hardware keys but without having to hold shift which is ok but this also breaks using the numeric keypad.

Peter Kamb:

I guess that is discussed at 5:23 in “What’s new in AppKit”, although I didn’t realize until right now that it would mess with my Dvorak standard shortcuts.

Thomas N:

Dvorak should not be impacted, nor ⌘C. The localization is about previously unreachable shortcuts like ⌘[ in French :)


5 Comments RSS · Twitter

I can see the logic when they try to localize it, but using the keyboard depends a lot on muscle memory, thus for many longtime users changing things like keyboard shortcuts is a tremendous disservice.
They already drastically ruined the iPad software keyboard with the last iPadOS by changing layouts without an option to leave them the way they were for years.
It's a very worrisome development.

Hopefully they try to maintain the old shortcuts as far as they can: on Word, putting text in bold on Windows is "translated" in French to Ctrl + G (for ’gras’) instead of Ctrl + B (for bold). Every time it drives me nuts. On the other hand, if some shortcuts will truly benefit from this, I believe most shortcut users are now very used to US shortcuts, so these improvements may not be seen as such. It may take a full generation to adapt, but I'd say it's worth it.

Tom in Germany

German QWERTZ here.

If they change cmd+Z to cmd+Y on the German keyboard, I’m going to scream so loud the saphire glass windows in Cupertino will shatter.

I watched the section in the video, and it's not clear to me when it applies. Maybe(!) Jeff is saying that it only applies if a keyboard shortcut in the original language doesn't require a modifier key, and in the destination language does.

I have an acquaintance who uses a Swedish keyboard and is running macOS 12. Should the "focus next window" shortcut be ⌘> (and ⌘< for "focus previous window")?

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