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My Truely Ergonormic Keyboard Settings

29 Sep 2013

Here is the layouts I have set for my TECK.

I have use all the 3 layers of TECK.

Main is for my MacBook Air.
Num is for my Windows Laptop.
Fn is for an extended map.

The idea to use Main and Num layor comes from this
The idea to use the FN layor(which I though not so useful) comes from this

I previously set the Main for my Windows laptop and Num prepared for Mac. But I have found that I will close my Mac frequently and every time I open my Mac, I need to press the [Num] key again as there is no power supply for the keyborad to persist the state when my Mac sleeps. But I don’t close my Windows laptop so often. So I swap the two layors.

Here’s the details for the settings:

I use the dvorak layout as the base layout. So I can have dvorak on my keyboard and do not need to change the system setting to use the dvorak layout. This is more portable and useful when I need to use remote desktop to connect to different servers. As before, when I use a Microsoft 4000, I needed to change the layout on the servers every time I connect to them. And changing the servers’ layout make some of my colleges confused when they are connecting to the server.

And the dvorak layout in the keyboard has the 【z】 and 【-】 key in the right position comparing to using the Qwerty layout in the keyboard and changed to Dovrak in the system, which puts the 【z】 and 【-】 in weird positions.

As I have been heavily using the Ergoemacs, I get so used to the Meta- key combinations, so I set the left space bar to 【Alt】 in Windows(the Num layor) and to 【Cmd】 in Mac(the Main layor). I also tried Xah Lee’s suggestion, which put the 【Alt】 on the Left Ctrl position and 【menu】 on the Left Space. But I found my pinky would get stressed so fast, then I changed 【Alt】 back to the Left Space position.

Speaking of Ergoemacs, which now utilizes the 【menu】 key heavily besides the 【Alt】 key, I need to give it a good place for me to easily press it. At last I put it on the Back delete’s position. Because in the middle of TECK, both hands can press it. I previously put it on the End key’s position, but as I learnt that the FN layor can be better used, I leave the tresure place for the FN key. As the FN key may invoke some repeatable functions.

By looking into TECK’s official alternatives, I found one layout(the link above) use the FN layor heavily, and it looks like what the Ergoemacs has done! They put the FN key on the Left Space, so that it can be easily press and keep pressing. And on the FN layor, there are arrow keys, backward and forward delete, etc.. What a great layor to have nearly 100% more space as usual to put more keys just under your thumb!!! It give you twice as much as space just by slightly move your thumb!! So it makes me think how I can utilize such a great spcae, what can be put into another space where is easy to reach, but not use so frequent. That idea keeps in my mind for some days….. And in the beginning when I learnt dvorak, I had done some search, and found there’s a programmer-dvorak layout which swap the symbols and numbers to get the symbols easier to use. Since then, it makes me feeling painful as everytime I need to input the symbols, expecially the parentsis, I need to press 【Shift】!

When the pain meets the idea, I found out that I can put all the numbers into the FN layor because they are not as frequently used as the symbols. And I also arrange the numbers in numpad form, so I can type the numbers faster. And I also put the delete keys into 【d】 and 【f】’s position in the FN map. To have a Ergoemacs like behavior.

To get all my frequently used symbols into the number row, there are two ways. One is the best way, use the keys already in the keyboard. Like 【[】 【]】 【=】 【*】. These keys can be recognized by the system as they are. But not all the symbols has a dedicated key for them. So the other way is to remap the unused keys to the symbols using AutoHotkey or others and put those keys into the number row.

But the remapping through software is not so good as sometimes the remmaping can’t take effect, like in a remote destop, or in the dos system.

So if TECK’s layout designer can make a key send out different combination, that will be a much better case.

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