Automatically switch keyboard to match language of surrounding text

In Ms Office there’s an option that changes the (keyboard layout) language by identifying the context where cursor exists. Is there a similar option for libreOffice 4.1 (in Ubuntu 13.04)?

You do not specifically mention the MS facility in question, but presumably you are referring to the Detect language automatically option. There is currently no exact equivalent in LO that I know of, although you can in-effect obtain similar functionality using the available options in LO.

Under Tools > Options… > Language Settings > Writing Aids languages and dictionaries can be selected. If you have installed the required language packs and selected the Available language modules and User-defined dictionaries then you are part-way there. The other half of the solution in LO is to use styles (paragraph and character). These styles can have an associated language and you can switch between them using either a keyboard shortcut or macro. In simple terms the text in question must be manually marked as being of a specific language i.e.,

|start language A|text in language A|stop language A|start language B|text in language B|stop language B|

This is the same way that Word marks the text.

Changing keyboard layout is an operating system function that LO has no control over, although keyboard and language are often related as this thread indicates. Microsoft can probably only offer this service in the situation where they are the operating system vendor. Do you know if this feature is offered on Microsoft Office for Mac?

No. But a Windows Applications can control system. The functionality in Ms Word is very convenient when writing multiple language texts.

@CrossChris - As @oweng pointed out LibO does not control the keyboard; this is an OS functionality.

I also don’t know which languages you want to use and how the keyboard layout is for each language.

Here is what I am doing:
Languages I am using: English, Japanese, German and Dutch.
The keyboard I am using is a Japanese keyboard which has for Latin characters the same layout as the English (US) keyboard and I am using the same keyboard for all languages.

Can you identify a keyboard which you can use for all languages like I did?
Changing the keyboard for each language can be very tricky as key layout is different.

In LibO the language is either recognized automatically or I set a language for the entire text, a paragraph, selection etc For this, see Writer >tools> language> and then select.

You use one keyboard set and without changing language layout you type everything in any language you need?! interesting. I have a std keyboard. But I can add another std keyboard. It can be great to use each for a language. btw, I hope like MS Word language layout could be changed automatically. Thta’s too bothering for me that LibO has no such thing,

Hey, your answer gave me a brilliant idea. To use two keyboards as in this. Thanks.

@CrossChris - I saw your link to Ask Ubuntu. Although I am converting from XP to Linux, I would never use a keyboard for each language (4 in my case), simply because I would need to memorize all keys for all keyboards and practice touch typing for each keyboard layout. Thus, I am very happy as LibO works. Before converting to LibO I did the same with MSO.

@CrossChris - I converted one of my PCs to Linux and write in LibO Writer the same way I do in XP. I use one key to switch between Japanese an Latin character languages (in my case English, German and Dutch). Thus even in Linux you don’t need 2 keyboards. However, please feel free to do so.

After a few months running LinuxMint 16 I updated to LinuxMint 17.

In LinuxMint 16 I could get LibreOffice to work in Japanese.


In LinuxMint 17, it has become IMPOSSIBLE to get Japanese characters on this Japanese Japan laptop (with Japanese keyboard with Hiragana and ABC on it). 10 Hours I have been trying.

Go figure major improvements.

I found your answer here purely by accident!!!

I am writing on my XP machine (Japanese keyboard, with 半角/半角key, split space bar etc.) very often Japanese/English/German in LibO (Writer, Calc and Impress) in one and the same document.and it all works. It is a question of the set-up of the OS. In our case it is Linux Mint (you) Linux Debian (me). Let me please propose to continue our discussion in the LM forum because this is not related to LibO. I send you a personal message in the LM forum and hope you got it.

Let’s go for the solution! I am convinced it works. We just make still something not in the right way.