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Step 2: Writing the Header

Overview of a keyboard file

A keyboard file is divided into two sections: the header and the rules section. The header section defines the name of the keyboard, its bitmap, and other general settings. The rules are used to define how the keyboard responds to keystrokes from the user, and are divided into groups. We will start by writing the header.

The keyboard header

The keyboard header is the first part of a keyboard; it consists of statements that help Keyman identify the keyboard and set default options for it. Each statement in the header must be on a separate line. While there is no technical requirement to put header statements at the start of a keyboard source file, keeping them there helps you identify them easily, and keeps them consistent with keyboard programs other people might write.

We will begin to write the keyboard. If Keyman Developer is not already running, start it now. Create a new keyboard file, navigate to the Layout tab, and click on the Code tab at the bottom of the screen to switch to the Code view.

Type or paste the following code into the keyboard file. This is the header of our keyboard file.

c Simplified French Keyboard for Keyman 9.0
c
c This keyboard program uses a simplified set of keys
c for typing French, especially for those who don't know the
c standard French keyboard.
c
c NOTE: This keyboard was created from the Keyman keyboard
c programming tutorial.

store(&Version) "9.0"             c This keyboard is for use with Keyman 9.0
store(&Name)    "Quick French"
store(&Bitmap)  "qfrench.ico"
store(&MnemonicLayout) "1"        c This keyboard uses a mnemonic layout.

begin Unicode > use(Main)

An explanation of the various parts of the header follows on the next page.

Step 3: The Keyboard Header