Monday, July 6, 2009

Text input on 3.0, Part 2.

In the last part, we found that we may be able to use the .keyboard format via GetKeyboardDataFromBundle(). This function is only called from -[UIKeyboardLayoutStar setKeyboardName:appearance:], and is not exported, so it seems .keyboard really only contains the keyboard geometry.

To see if it really works, let's save an internal keyboard into a file:

[NSKeyedArchiver archiveRootObject:UIKBGetKeyboardByName(@"iPhone-Portrait-Arabic") toFile:@"/tmp/iPhone-Portrait-Arabic.keyboard"]

unfortunately, UIKBGetKeyboardByName is not an exported symbol, so we have to use nlist or lookup_function_pointers. Now, rename this file to e.g. iPhone-Portrait-QWERTY.keyboard (the English keybaord) and place it to UIKit.framework — and, indeed, the English keyboard becomes Arabic!

But how to create a UIKBKeyboard? A UIKBKeyboard has 3 major components: name (NSString*), visualStyle (NSString*) and keyplanes (NSArray*). The name is just the name you'd expect (iPhone-Portrait-Arabic), while the visualStyle must be one of @"iPhone-Standard" or @"iPhone-Alert". These are easy to construct. The meat are all in the keyplanes variable. The keyplanes is an array of UIKBKeyplane*. Difference keyplanes are switched between using the shift and 123/ABC keys. Again, each keyplane has a name (NSString*, e.g. @"Capital-Letters"); keylayouts, an array of UIKBKeylayout*; attributes, a UIKBAttributeList* and finally supported-types, an array of NSString*, etc., etc...

The content is summarized into With the format analyzed, we can try to create our own keyboard using this new format.

1 comment:

  1. hope this is working out for you man.. I miss your app