Guidance for developers

Developers often ask what they must do to ensure that their application works with an IME. In many cases, the programmer need not do anything special. This is especially true of Java(tm) programs that use Swing components. Swing components are by default active input method clients. Active input method clients transparently manage the connections to the input methods. This means that the application programmer doesn't need to interact directly with the input methods themselves. Java applications that use the Abstract Widowing Toolkit (AWT) components, however, may require some direct interaction with the input methods.

Aside from Java's graphical components ,developers need to be careful with their interaction with the keyboard. This is especially true of applications that test for a key press. Programmers often assume that each key press equates to a character being typed on the keyboard, and, for that matter, that each character input must have been the result of a keystroke. As we discussed earlier, there are often several keystrokes associated with the input of a single character. In addition, a character may have been simply selected from the candidate list. Therefore, some care must be exercised when interacting with the keyboard.

Testing your program with an IME

Test teams and even development teams typically ignore testing applications with an IME. Many teams erroneously believe that IME's are only available in non-English versions of operating systems. The good news is that many operating systems include support for IME's in all versions. In particular, Linux includes built-in support for Japanese, Chinese, and Korean.

Contact IBM

Need assistance with your globalization questions?

Topic contents