# XKB compose sequences

I just ended a post about inserting special characters in VIM with the remark that I should find out how to insert special punctuation marks using just XKB, so I set out to find out how to add these to the list of existing compose options for XKB. Turns out that I should have simply taken another look at the configuration file for Compose mode (/usr/X11R6/share/X11/locale/en_US.UTF-8/Compose on my system).

Now I learned how to easily type a bunch of characters that I find myself using so often that I know their Unicode numbers by heart. This going to save my a ton of time and annoyance, and there’s no longer any need to remember the VIM digraphs either, although these were equally easy to remember.

Char.XMLHTMLXKB compose
&#8212;&mdash;Compose - - -
&#8211;&ndash;Compose - - .
&#8230;&hellip;Compose . .
&#8216;&lsquo;Compose < '
&#8217;&rsquo;Compose > '
&#8220;&ldquo;Compose < "
&#8221;&rdquo;Compose > "

1. Comment by Rowan Rodrik
On June 12, 2010 at 13:47

I’ve been having some issues with not all compose sequences working (the same) in some applications such as Firefox. I just learned that this is because GTK apps don’t use XIM by default. For now I’ve solved it the quick and dirty way by setting an environment variable:

GTK_IM_MODULE=xim

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