OpenOffice Spanish keyboard shortcut oddity

Preparing for the upcoming Wikimania in Buenos Aires, I’ve been attempting to practice my Español in part by switching my computer’s user interface into Spanish.

OpenOffice 3.1 was released today, so of course I went and grabbed the Spanish-language Mac download and fired it up. ¡Bueno! Except…. while editing a document, cmd+A brought up an “open” dialog instead of selecting all. Um?

Ok, “A” for “Abrir”, sounds good right? Except for the part where the entire rest of the operating system maintains the same keyboard shortcuts regardless of my language setting, and I would go completely mad if common shortcut keys randomly gave me different features in just one application.

A little googling turned up complaints about this sort of behavior going back years, but not a lot of good solutions. After some poking around, I did finally discover the configuration dialog for the keyboard shortcuts — under Tools/Customize… (Herramientas/Personalizar…) instead of, say, oh, in the preferences dialog.

I was able to — component by component — export the English keyboard settings to a file (saved conveniently with a “.*” extension) and — component by component — load my “customized” settings back up after relaunching in Spanish.

It seems to work now — cmd+A selects all, cmd+O brings up an open dialog — but it was a bit of a pain getting there. Let’s hope they don’t spontaneously revert…

Update: I’ve added a note on this to a bug on OOo’s bug tracker. Trying to track down some Spanish-speaking Windows users to check the standard platform behavior of Windows apps localized in Spanish… is Ctrl+A for Open and Ctrl+G for Save normal there?

3 thoughts on “OpenOffice Spanish keyboard shortcut oddity”

  1. Office (the MS one) used to do this with Ctrl-{B,I,U} back in the day in the Hungarian version… Ctrl+ F, D, A… ugh!

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