Typing Na'vi

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The standard orthography used to transcribe Na'vi (i.e. the Na'vi alphabet) includes two characters not found on standard United States keyboards: ì and ä, plus their upper-case counterparts. However, there are several ways to type those characters even using a standard keyboard. Which method you should use depends on the type of operating system you have: Windows, Mac, or Linux.

Windows

The Alt-Codes Method

ì - Press Alt + 0236 OR 141
ä - Press Alt + 0228 OR 132
Ì - Press Alt + 0204
Ä - Press Alt + 0196

Note: the numbers must be entered using the numeric keypad, num lock must be on (press the "Num Lock" key to turn it on or off), and in some cases you may have to use the right-hand Alt button and not the left-hand one. Hold down the Alt button while typing the numbers; the character will be typed when the Alt key is released.

The International Keyboard Method

First, configure Windows to use the "US - International" keyboard layout. To do this in Windows XP:

  • Start -> Control Panel -> Regional and Language Options
  • Languages -> Details -> Add
  • Select "United States - International", click OK, click Apply

To do this in Windows Vista:

  • Start -> Control Panel -> Clock, Language, Region -> Change Keyboards
  • Click Change Keyboards
  • Click Add
  • Under "Default Input Language" select "United States International"

After making this change, several keys will work differently, including single-quote ('), double-quote ("), tilde (~), and back-tick (`). Pressing those keys once will not type those characters as usual. Instead, to type those characters, first press the desired key, then press the space bar.

With Windows configured to use the International keyboard layout, you can type the Na'vi special characters as follows:

ì - Press `, then i
ä - Press ", then a
Ì - Press `, then Shift + i
Ä - Press ", then Shift + a

(Note that pressing " usually requires pressing Shift + ')

Configuring the International keyboard layout will add an icon to the system tray area of your taskbar (usually found in the lower-right corner of your screen). Clicking on this icon will allow you to quickly switch between the International layout and the Standard layout.

The Na'vi Keyboard Layout by Coda

  • Go to this post on the Learn Na'vi forum. You must login to the forum to download files.
  • Download the navi.zip file attached to that post.
  • Unzip the files and run the setup utility.
  • Change keyboard layout (from the Windows Control Panel, see above description for WinXP and Vista)
  • Select "US - Navi" as your new keyboard layout.

After changing your keyboard layout, the "q" key becomes an ä and the "j" key becomes an ì. As above, you can switch between the Na'vi and Standard layouts using the icon in your system tray.

The Na'vi Keyboard Layout by Veryth

  • Go to this post on the Learn Na'vi forum. You must login to the forum to download files.
  • Download the Na'vi-Keyboard.zip file attached to that post.
  • Unzip the files and run the setup utility.
  • Change keyboard layout (from the Windows Control Panel, see above description for WinXP and Vista)
  • Select "US - Navi" as your new keyboard layout.

After changing your keyboard layout, you can type the Na'vi characters as follows:

ì - Press Alt + Ctrl + i
ä - Press Alt + Ctrl + a
Ì - Press Alt + Ctrl + Shift + i
Ä - Press Alt + Ctrl + Shift + a

Alternately, you can type them as follows:

ì - Press Right-Alt + i
ä - Press Right-Alt + a
Ì - Press Right-Alt + Shift + i
Ä - Press Right-Alt + Shift + a

As above, you can switch between the Na'vi and Standard layouts using the icon in your system tray.

The Na'vi Keyboard by Tirea Aean

  • Go to this post on the Learn Na'vi forum.
  • Download the .zip file attached to that post.
  • Unzip the files and run the setup utility.
  • switch to the kxwerty keyboard layout. Now you can type Na'vi fast.

Layout looks like this:
normal:

º 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - =
kx w e r t y u i o p [ ] \
a s tx f ng h ì k l ; '
z ä ts v px n m , . /

SHIFT:

~ ! @ # $ % ^ & * ( ) _ +
Kx W E R T Y U I O P { } |
A S Tx F Ng H Ì K L : "
Z Ä Ts V Px N M < > ?

To type é (like in tuté), use AltGr+e (right Alt+e) when kxwerty layout is active.

Mac

Standard Method

ì - Press Option + `, then i
ä - Press Option + u, then a
Ì - Press Option + `, then Shift + i
Ä - Press Option + u, then Shift + a

Na'vi Keyboard Layout by Seze

  • Go to this post on the Learn Na'vi forum. You must login to the forum to download files.
  • Download the Na'vi.keylayout file for QWERTY, or the Dvorak_Navi.keylayout file for Dvorak.
  • Drop the layout file into your /Library/Keyboard Layouts/ folder.
  • The layout will then be accessible in the Language & Text preferences pane under Input Sources.

With this layout installed, the q and b keys are mapped to ä and the d and j keys are mapped to ì.

iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad

The trick on these devices to getting ä and ì is to simply keep your finger on the key when pressing "a" or "i". After a moment a selection menu will pop up with many diacritical choices. Just leave your finger on the pane and slide it over to the letter you want, then lift up.

Linux

GNOME: You may need to set your Compose Key in Keyboard Settings. Then use it in sequence:

ì - Press Compose, then `, then i
ä - Press Compose, then ", then a
Ì - Press Compose, then `, then Shift + i
Ä - Press Compose, then ", then Shift + a

Setting Compose Key in GNOME

On some distributions (such as Ubuntu) the Compose Key has not be assigned. To assign a key for composing characters:

  1. Goto System -> Preferences -> Keyboard.
  2. Select the Layouts tab.
  3. Click the "Layout Options..." button at the bottom of the form. This opens a new window containing a number of expanders.
  4. Open the "Compose key position" expander. This displays a number of check boxes to assign a key for composition. You may select more than one composition key, or none.
  5. When you have selected your composition key you can close both windows. Changes are applied immediately.

Setting Compose Key in KDE

  1. Goto Control Center -> Regional & Accessibility -> Keyboard Layout -> Xkb Options.
  2. Ensure "Enable xkb options" is checked.
  3. Select "Compose Key Position" and set to the key you wish to use.

Browser extension

Firefox

abc Tajpu

There is a small browser extension called abc Tajpu at http://traduku.net/abctajpu that was designed for Esperanto. It includes numerous other Latin alphabets, plus Greek. The Firefox extension is available here. User can choose which languages are supported. Characters are keyed in by typing a sequence and then hitting the "insert" key. Ä and ì are "a:" and "i`" plus [insert]. There are also shorter sequences for some letters, and the user can define macros to customize the sequences.

easyaccent

There is a second extension for Firefox called easyaccent which is available here. It allows you to create the ì by doing Ctrl-` (top left of keyboard) then 'i' and ä by doing Ctrl-: and 'a'.