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I've just spent about half an hour reading forums and such, so in short of finding a working solution, I ask this here.

All solutions found so far consist of english (US) keyboards writing spanish characters, while it may work for them, I use a fr_CA which already contains some accented characters (plus the letters on my keyboard are fr_CA).

Therefore, I tried activating the "Compose key position" and "Enable extra typographic characters", etc. but I find no way to write inverted ! and ? or ñ, etc. on my keyboard.

Anyone know how? Using the character map is getting tiresome. Thanks!

** UPDATE **

Setting the "Compose key position" to "Right Ctrl" makes the ñ work by pressing

AltChr + Right Ctrl + ~ and then n = ñ

Now I'd love to be able to map custom chars to key combos :) I'd map something for the ¡ and ¿ chars (and other accented letters), etc.

** UPDATE 2 **

As stated by Pit, enabling the "Compose key position" works also with ¡ and ¿ by pressing

Right Ctrl + Shift + 1 (x2) = ¡

Right Ctrl + Shift + 6 (x2) = ¿

AltChr + ´ then o = ó

etc

Solution accepted!

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Your last edit should be an answer! –  Jorge Castro Jan 22 '11 at 3:50
    
@Jorge Castro, indeed! However I accepted Pit's solution because of what he wrote in his solutions's comment. Granted, those comments should be in the answer instead, though. I updated the question with more details about the answer as I cannot modify Pit's answer :) ...for clarity. –  Yanick Rochon Jan 22 '11 at 4:05
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2 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

System -> Preferences -> Keyboard -> Layouts -> Add... -> Spain Include dead tilde

Works for me. I'm normally using ch_FR.

(You might want to print the keyboard layout.)

Edit: I repost my comment which has actually solved the problem

I got it! With I guess normal fr_CA, (if I add it by "By Language" with French in the first dropdown and Canada in the second).

You have to enable a Compose key:

You hold the compose key simultaneously with Alt Gr (left of space bar) and push ; to get the ~ (it will not yet show up) then you hit n to get ñ. Sometimes it's a bit buggy and you have to hit the tripple key combo twice before hitting n.

For ¡ you use compose key + shift + ! (1) and for ¿ it would be compose key + shift + ? (6). Again sometimes you'll have to hit the tripple key combo twice .

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if en_US can output the ñ without changing keyboard layout, why can't fr_CA? I'd hope not having to change/switch keyboard layout, if possible (if not, why?) –  Yanick Rochon Jan 21 '11 at 15:46
    
Every language has it's own letters and special characters, so it is not possible to include every possible character in one keyboard layout. Perhaps it is possible to include personal key-combinations in a standard keyboard layout. –  Pit Jan 21 '11 at 16:12
    
I got it! With i guess normal fr_CA, (if i add it by "By Language" with French in the first dropdown and Canada in the second). You have to enable a Compose key. You hold the compose key simultaneously with Alt Gr (left of space bar) and push ; to get the ~ ( it will not yet show up) then you hit n to get ñ. Sometimes it's a bit buggy and you have to hit the tripple key combo twice before hitting n. For ¡you use compose key + shift + ! (1) and for ¿ it would be compose key + shift + ? (6). Again sometimes you'll have to hit the tripple key combo twice . –  Pit Jan 21 '11 at 23:03
    
yes! That's what I wrote in my edit, but for the ¡ and ¿.. that I didn't know, and it works! thanks! –  Yanick Rochon Jan 22 '11 at 3:29
    
I saw your first edit after posting my last comment. I'm happy I could help you. This was actually quite useful for myself too. –  Pit Jan 22 '11 at 8:06
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At least in Natty, the “Canda French (legacy)” layout has most of what you want; the "¿" is right alt + shift + "-"; right alt + "ç" gives you dead ascii tilde (so you go right alt + ç + n to get ñ). Not sure how to get ¡, however; depending on how often you use it, know that in GTK apps using the default input mechanism typing ctrl + shift + u followed by the unicode codepoint followed by whitespace will enter that unicode character, so ctrl+shift+u a1 space produces a “¡”.

alt text

However, more interesting is the “Canda Multilingual”, which seems (from me just looking at it for a little while) to have all the same main keys as the french legacy keyboard, but with a lot more right-alt variants: alt text

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