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Since I've migrated to linux a few years ago, one issue still remains.

The ê character features a lot in my "moeder taal" (home language).

In Windows making the character was easy, I simply had to type Alt-136 and voila!

Is there a simplistic way in linux/unix to access special characters?

I'd like to be able to type an ê anywhere on my (or any other) system, not only in the DE, but on the command-line as well.

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off-topic: "moeder taal" is now my phrase of the week, thanks. – msw Sep 20 '10 at 17:02
It's called a circumflex: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumflex ! :) – Zolomon Sep 21 '10 at 16:34
@Zolomon read the first paragraph from your link, pay special attention to the last word in that paragraph – Stefan Sep 22 '10 at 9:40
Just trying to spread the knowledge. :) – Zolomon Sep 23 '10 at 7:16
damm, now your making me feel bad +1 – Stefan Sep 23 '10 at 13:02
up vote 16 down vote accepted

Press Ctrl+Shift+U and an underlined U will appear. Next to it type in EA, which equals ê.

Found the info here

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great, I never knew this – phunehehe Sep 20 '10 at 16:44
Please note, this only works on Gnome. For a more generic solution, look at the answer involving Compose. – Alexios May 2 '12 at 5:19

In the terminal you can type Compose e ^. On a Windows keyboard Compose is the Menu key to the right of the right-side Windows key.

Wikipedia entry: Compose key

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Whether or not the Compose Key is that key or something else depends on your settings, and is very distro-, locale- and config-specific. – frabjous Sep 20 '10 at 19:59
Isn't it Compose + ^ and then e to get this ê character? – maxschlepzig Sep 20 '10 at 20:08
not the best of sollutions, as the compose button seems to be a very rare occurence on keyboards.. :) – Stefan Sep 20 '10 at 22:12
When trying to find which physical key produces a keysym (assuming you run X), xev is your friend. For the "Compose" key, look for "Multi_key". – bhm Sep 20 '10 at 23:42
If you run GNOME, look at "System -> Preferences -> Keyboard", in the Layouts tab under the Options... button (phew...). There is a section in that dialog for setting the Compose key position. – camh Sep 21 '10 at 6:40

May be I'm not understanding something but why don't you simply install the US_intl keyboard layout and you'll have all accents available to all letters (possible) (and on windows too) and you make ê pressing ^ and e. ^ is on shift-6 on us keyboards, no idea on moeder taal keyboard!

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