> The basic problem is that INT 15.4F is a BIOS function that can be
> called by any program at any time.  It's true that it is always
> supposed to be called by the INT 09 handler...

> all kinds of issues that must be taken into account in the
> implementation, including the fact that it must be fully-re-entrant
> and it must never issue any I/O requests to the keyboard controller
> or the PIC or anything else.

I think it could "bounce off" attempts to use it recursively but
I do agree that it should not do I/O, so it can only be used in
combination with something else which does the I/O and/or buffers.

> why would you want to "simulate keystrokes properly"?

That should be possible with the int 16 func for thatmost of the time.

> Regarding FD-KEYB 3.0, I've been think of some ways that it could be
> improved.  I think one thing that would help immensely is to turn the
> "translation" into a two-step process.  The first step would be to
> translate the input scancodes to Unicode, rather than trying to
> translate them directly to a code page character as is done now.

That could work with a suitably compressed representation, e.g. only
using the start of Unicode char space, or only discontinous subsets.

> This may also be the first step towards getting Unicode somewhat
> integrated into DOS, which I know people have been talking about for
> a long time.  The second step of the process (Unicode -> Code Page)
> could even be implemented as a separate API (perhaps an INT 16h
> extension, or something related to DISPLAY?)

As discussed earlier, there could be a DISPLAY which processes UTF8
instead of ASCII, but it will confuse programs which assume that all
string lengths are equal to their byte lengths for the layouting...


PS: That DISPLAY could store a big Unicode font in XMS and cache a
number of recently used chars, or run entirely in protected mode.

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