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Unity 7 updated in Ubuntu 13.10 with new Indicator Keyboard

Across the latest months, the developers have conducted the development of Ubuntu via a double-sided approach: on one hand, there is the solid focus on developing the next-generation components of Ubuntu, on the other hand, adding new features, optimizations and enhancements to Saucy Salamander.

Unity 7(.1) has been updated in Ubuntu 13.10 to another meaningful release, introducing default support for Indicator Keyboard, indicator now installed by default in Ubuntu 13.10.

Meaning, via the regular updates, Unity 7 comes now with a new default indicator,--Indicator Keyboard--, increasing its functionalities with a handy bundle of features.

Essentially, Indicator Keyboard is an indicator useful to switch between keyboard layouts and input methods in a matter of seconds directly via the easiness of the Unity panel.

By looking at the panel, the user is to observe a white-ish container centering the selected language, allowing the user to instantly observe the selected language without clicking on the panel, etc.


Selecting another language (by clicking on Indicator Keyboard and clicking on a preferred language) changes the icon with the new language's characters (such as En, Fr, etc), keeping the user aware of selections.


Clicking on Indicator Keyboard, opens its menu where Character Map, Keyboard Layout Chart and Text Entry Settings are 1-click away available:

  • Character Map contains detailed maps of characters exposing every character per font with big-sized blocks of characters, zoom in/out support, character preview (by right-clicking & holding on a desired character), etc
  • Keyboard Layout Chart opens a visual representation of the keyboard, allowing the user to properly digest it
  • Text Entry Settings summons a dedicated Text Entry view where input sources are to be added, removed and repositioned

Meaning, under Text Entry, the user is able to add languages that will be displayed on the Unity panel's Indicator Keyboard, hitting the + button and adding (for example) French, adds French to the Indicator Keyboard's menu (on Unity panel).

Removing a certain input source is to be achieved by checking it (by clicking on it) and hitting the - button, action that removes the language.

Repositioning an input source is as simple as clicking on a desired language and clicking again on the up/down-pointed arrows, action that moves the language accordingly, movement adopted and respected by Indicator Keyboard, too.

Show current input source in the menu bar is checked by default, unchecking it, removes the indicator from the Unity panel.