Monthly Archives: June 2021

The United States-International keyboard layout

I have used the United States-International keyboard layout for years to enter Irish Language accented letters (á,é,í,…) and occasionally German letters with umlauts. I have done this with dead keys: In this layout ‘, `, “, ~, and ^ are dead keys. Nothing happens until you type certain letters following the dead key, at which point the letter appears with the appropriate accent, umlaut, etc. This has worked very well for me. TIL that you can do much more with that layout. How to use the United States-International keyboard layout in Windows 7, in Windows Vista, and in Windows XP explains all of this. Using the Right-Alt key and the Right-Alt-key with the shift key let you enter all sorts of wonderful things, e.g. ß (for German), € (Euro), ¥ (Yen), þ, ð, ø, Ø, ©.

Some of you may know this, but I suspect the vast majority of Windows users, and a lot of Linux users, do not. The link above refers to older versions of Windows, but the layout works on Windows 10 and on Linux. The process of installing the keyboard will depend on your OS. Look for “keyboard layout” in the documentation.

Networking with the Windows Subsystem for Linux

Networking was built in on the Ubuntu WSL install. WSL Ubuntu under Windows has an IP of, but it can see my local 192.168 network, and the entire internet. WSL Ubuntu says it uses a DNS Server on the 172.17 network. Since WSL uses NAT, I expect that translates to my router on the 192.168 network, which in turn accesses the DNS servers of my ISP. IP addresses in the range to are private, so apparently WSL creates its own network.

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A Note on Computer BIOS Settings

Enabling VM features on a computer is a BIOS feature, so do to it you have to interrupt the startup with the Escape or some other key, depending on the machine. My HP EliteDesk uses the Escape key, but the boot started so fast that my 70 year old fingers could not hit that key fast enough to prevent Windows from starting. A web search suggest that I use the Windows power settings to disable the “quick boot” and actually do a full shutdown and restart rather than a simple reboot. This worked and I could click Escape in time and get to the BIOS settings. After a little searching I found the VM setting (Every BIOS is different) and turned it on. I also added a 5-second delay to the boot settings to make the next time easier.

Another Undead Computer Language

From Competitive Programming to APL, with Conor Hoekstra.

The first half or so of this article was like reading an anthropological report of a strange culture far away: There were no programming contests when I was getting started out in the field (1967-1976). I rarely had the kind of technical interviews that Hoekstra went through, and did not get any of the five programming jobs I held from 1977 to 1998 through such an interview.

I started reading more closely with

Conor: So, I heard about APL five different times between the year 2010 and 2019.
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