Keyboard layout change visual feedback. Thoughts?

Dylan McCall dylanmccall at
Sun Mar 15 02:59:05 UTC 2009

Here is a cute little bug (and patch) I filed upstream...

The idea is that right now changing keyboard layout via shortcut keys
(Eg: Alt + Caps Lock) provides absolutely no visual feedback by default.
Bad for many reasons. It's bad for people learning the system, since
they can EASILY hit those keys by accident and be confused. (A very
popular problem, judging by my experiences selling / supporting
computers in Canada, where Windows has multiple input languages
installed by default and also no feedback when they are switched
It's also bad for people who are actually using the layout change
shortcut intentionally. There are four different keyboard layouts that
can be switched between at any time. How is the user supposed to know
which one he has selected?! (Granted, he could add the Keyboard
Indicator applet, but that isn't readily obvious).

I tried to solve the problem with a simple notification bubble that
appears when the keyboard layout is changed. Some work could still be
done, but it's a fine proof of concept at least. What are your thoughts
on this?

Here a screenshot:

Is it on the right track? Suggestions, etc. would be great :)

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