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Yes, strange. (I've got this lengthy list of computer-related questions and I thought today would be the day to ask this one, while I was at it with a few others. Thanks in advance!)

The problem: When I go to press shift-tilde, nothing happens. Any key pressed after brings up the missing tilde and that key.

Keyboard stuck? or programming error?

edit: It seems this occurs in any application: browser, word processor, etc.

edit2: completely forgot the specs: XP, Logitech wireless keyboard and mouse.

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4 Answers 4

up vote 5 down vote accepted

What language is your keyboard set to?

At one time I had my keyboard set to UK(International) - as such pressing Alt Gr + ' (for example) would do nothing, but following that with a press of a relevant letter (eg E) would produce the letter with the relevant diacritic - in this example probably é.

This would work Alt Gr with a variety of keys that would represent a diacritic followed by a valid letter. If you're fussed see Wikipedia's article on that keyboard setup.

A further Wikipedia search shows that n sometimes has a tilde in Spanish, such as ñ.
You could try doing Shift + ~ and then N and see what happens.

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1  
+1. I'm in Canada, and for some reason, every so often I get a keyboard switching to French (I work in an IT shop so I see a lot of machines), even though it's not supposed to. I usually end up using US settings to avoid this. –  user3463 Jul 28 '10 at 5:20
    
@Randolph - FYI: In Windows you can configure a key combination to switch between languages and/or keyboard layouts. I think it's inside Regional and Language Options somewhere. –  DMA57361 Jul 28 '10 at 7:23
    
This is the correct explanation. I realized after reading your answer that I was using my wife's Polish keyboard and settings. (Why didn't I think of that!? :-) So, even though the right ALT key followed by certain letters will produce the special Polish letters, I never caught on that pressing SHIFT + tilde + certain letters will also do the same special Polish letters. Weird, but it looks to be true. Am I making sense? Thanks! I appreciate it. BTW: how did you get the emboss effect for the keys in your answer? –  andrz_001 Jul 28 '10 at 8:20
    
yup, well aware of the key combination, but it doesn't always work. I figure it's easier to just make the keyboard US English unless it's a French customer, which is hardly ever. –  user3463 Jul 28 '10 at 16:04

Check your keyboard manual - does it allow for programming macros etc.? If so, it's probably the keyboard or the keyboard's software thinking you're about to send it a command.

One way to find out - plug in a non-wireless keyboard (don't bother removing the wireless one, Windows works fine with two plugged in, in my experience) and see if it happens with the other keyboard as well.

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Is your control key stuck? What happens if you try to use a colon : or a carot ^?

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2  
You mean caret? :P –  John T Jul 27 '10 at 22:32
    
I tried this and other key combinations. Sorry if I didn't write this in the OP. Thanks though. –  andrz_001 Jul 28 '10 at 8:14

Are you connected to another computer via something like ssh? Sometimes they intercept ~ as a terminal control character, if it at the beginning of the line.

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No; but the keyboard is a wireless Logitech, if that helps. –  andrz_001 Jul 27 '10 at 21:43

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