Jason McDowell is also known as Little Tiny Fish. He is the Creative Director for OnMilwaukee. Occasionally he freelances. Mostly he rides bikes. is not a cohesive blog, but a repository of musings on an assortment of topics, such as design, art, cycling, Milwaukee, and other personal experiences.

One of my big endeavors last year was to learn a new language and here I am learning two. I am planning a blog explaining the path I took to dive into both languages, and review a myriad of apps that have helped. But that is for another time. My two new languages, German and Norwegian, have characters that are unique to their languages that we don’t find in English. Instead of switching between two keyboards with two different layouts, you can build an entirely new keyboard with the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator 1.4.

By far, the easiest way to get the keys you’re looking for is to add languages from your control panel and swap between the layouts you’re looking for. However that may require you to learn a new layout, or your keyboard may be incompatible.

Microsoft does have a free keyboard builder. This can also be useful for people who are learning two languages and require a couple of different character sets. I’m in a unique position of learning two different character sets PLUS I use the Dvorak keyboard layout. So basically all my letters are totally rearranged. I’d like to keep using Dvorak while accessing these unique characters, so that’s where the Keyboard Layout Creator comes into play. Continue reading ›