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geekhack Community => Ergonomics => Topic started by: xsznix on Mon, 16 May 2016, 18:21:58

Title: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: xsznix on Mon, 16 May 2016, 18:21:58
Hi guys, I've been learning a new keyboard layout that I generated using the simulated annealing technique demonstrated in carpalx. What do you guys think? I've done a little non-scientific write-up here:

https://xsznix.wordpress.com/2016/05/16/introducing-the-rsthd-layout/ (https://xsznix.wordpress.com/2016/05/16/introducing-the-rsthd-layout/)
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: PieterGen on Tue, 17 May 2016, 05:58:00
What do I think ? I think it is FANTASTIC !  You wrote a new keyboard generating algorithm, right? :thumb:  Plus, you wrote it in Rust ?  :p 

You made my day already! BTW, loved how you wrote in the blog "I’m excited to be joining a small group of geeks who have a hobby that nobody really understands or appreciates."  :))  When I tell my colleagues "Hey, a guy on Geekhack wrote a new keyboard generator and he did it in Rust too!" they don't understand what are Geekhack, keyboard generator and Rust. Let alone why this would be special  :))

Looks like a Dvorak/Maltron cross over. How are the arrow keys in real life? Having them on one hand can be handy too, right? 

Iĺl dive into your layout later. In more detail. Great work !
 

Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: algernon on Tue, 17 May 2016, 06:31:27
I like how the arrow keys are split between the two halves, will try it, too!

The rest of the layout looks interesting too, albeit I like to place a bit more work on my thumbs: I have all the modifiers on the thumb cluster, and recently moved : there too. But I'm nowhere near 100WPM, let alone 120, so what do I know?

A very interesting post, nevertheless, something I will be coming back to for inspiration and ideas, thank you!
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: duq on Tue, 17 May 2016, 11:48:57
Well done, and welcome to the community :). I think the whole 'hack' part has lost some of it's meaning this past few years on this board, but this post absolutely does.
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: xsznix on Tue, 17 May 2016, 13:35:03
Looks like a Dvorak/Maltron cross over. How are the arrow keys in real life? Having them on one hand can be handy too, right? 

The arrow keys are based on the placement of HJKL on Dvorak: JK are on the bottom left, and HL are on the right. I think using two hands to navigate in two dimensions makes more sense than making one hand do everything, simply because you have more fingers to do the same work. It would be nice to have arrow keys on the same hand sometimes, for example when using the mouse with the right hand, but I've fond that those cases are a lot more rare than when I'm navigating around long documents in vim or another text editor.

It's definitely helpful having them within reach of the longest and strongest fingers though instead of off in the bottom right corner of the keyboard as in most other layouts, because I can switch between typing and navigating without having to move my entire hand. I highly recommend the arrow setup; I'm surprised that more people haven't done it already.

I like to place a bit more work on my thumbs: I have all the modifiers on the thumb cluster, and recently moved : there too.

I find that having E, backspace, enter, space, and the symbol layer toggle on the thumb gives them enough work already… however, if I didn't put E under the thumb, that key would probably be a shift key instead, freeing up the normal shift positions for other modifiers—possibly the symbol layer toggle.

The 1u keys on the thumb cluster are too hard to hit for Ctrl/Alt/Gui, in my opinion; it's quite the reach getting to them. The center column is easier to reach, so for me at least, it makes more sense to put those modifiers there. The thumb cluster keys are used for my four auxiliary layers. You can see those keymaps in the comments of my keyboard firmware: https://github.com/xsznix/qmk_firmware/blob/master/keyboard/ergodox_ez/keymaps/keymap_rsthd.c (https://github.com/xsznix/qmk_firmware/blob/master/keyboard/ergodox_ez/keymaps/keymap_rsthd.c)
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: algernon on Tue, 17 May 2016, 15:41:27
I like to place a bit more work on my thumbs: I have all the modifiers on the thumb cluster, and recently moved : there too.

I find that having E, backspace, enter, space, and the symbol layer toggle on the thumb gives them enough work already… however, if I didn't put E under the thumb, that key would probably be a shift key instead, freeing up the normal shift positions for other modifiers—possibly the symbol layer toggle.

The 1u keys on the thumb cluster are too hard to hit for Ctrl/Alt/Gui, in my opinion; it's quite the reach getting to them. The center column is easier to reach, so for me at least, it makes more sense to put those modifiers there. The thumb cluster keys are used for my four auxiliary layers. You can see those keymaps in the comments of my keyboard firmware: https://github.com/xsznix/qmk_firmware/blob/master/keyboard/ergodox_ez/keymaps/keymap_rsthd.c (https://github.com/xsznix/qmk_firmware/blob/master/keyboard/ergodox_ez/keymaps/keymap_rsthd.c)

Mhm. I had similar issues, but I turned my modifiers into toggles instead, so I don't have to hold them, and that made it much more comfortable to use them. (I'd rather reach the 1u keys on the thumb cluster, than fiddle with the bottom row, I just can't get used to using that :/). Having the E on the thumb cluster sounds interesting, I might try it, if I can fit it into my layout somehow :)
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: naz on Wed, 18 May 2016, 13:27:37
How did you generate that awesome metric report table??? i would love to have one of those with spanish data
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: squizzler on Sat, 28 March 2020, 13:45:56
I am running this layout on a Minidox. I selected it on the back of its designer's appraisal of Malt: my keyboard journey also took me through Malt, and his comments accorded with my experience. I have written a little on my creation of the firmware in a blog post (https://heartofwalesbikes.wordpress.com/2020/03/25/building-a-firmware-for-the-minidox-split-keyboard-part-1-latin-letters-in-rsthd-layout/). If the OP is still on the site and monitoring this thread, thanks for the awesome layout!
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: squizzler on Mon, 06 April 2020, 05:34:55
I would also add that I think layouts with the 'E' on the thumb cluster will become more popular off the back of the success of the Ergodox and other split keyboards. This also includes the Malt, and such an arrangement allows greater efficiency than ones where the E must be with all the other letters.

Personally, I see no point in a split keyboard user converting to a staggered-row compatible layouts such as Dvorak and Coleman with the aim of adopting the new keymap on both the split and, for instance, their laptop. Better to learn something optimal to the split arrangement, and stick with Qwerty on the laptop and any machines one might be guest on.
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: batfink on Mon, 06 April 2020, 05:55:55
I see people come up with layouts that have E on the thumb from time to time. Personally, I'm against this approach.

I can see the attraction if you start using a keyboard that has thumb keys. But I say this: thumb keys are excellent - but they are best used for layer selection.  Alphabetic keys should be in the main section, then use your thumb keys for cool extra layers like:

- having common symbols (brackets, etc) in great locations on the home row.

- have a navigation or extend layer (https://colemakmods.github.io/ergonomic-mods/extend.html) for easy editing.

- having mappings for foreign characters / custom macros etc or anything else you have a personal requirement for.

Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: squizzler on Tue, 07 April 2020, 03:08:42
The two schools of thought are not mutually exclusive. I have layer-tap under the 'E' and space key.

Most traditional key maps adapted to the ergodox choose to assign the space and backspace on the home keys of the thumbs. Malt and RSTHD simply replace the backspace withe the 'E', which does involve a little shuffle of things on the thumb pads. Incidentally, as an aspiring writer on a minidox, I elected to put the quote mark on the thumb pad too, here (https://github.com/squizzler/qmk_firmware/tree/master/keyboards/minidox/keymaps/RSTHD) is my keymap.
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: Snarfangel on Tue, 07 April 2020, 09:53:45
The two schools of thought are not mutually exclusive. I have layer-tap under the 'E' and space key.

Most traditional key maps adapted to the ergodox choose to assign the space and backspace on the home keys of the thumbs. Malt and RSTHD simply replace the backspace withe the 'E', which does involve a little shuffle of things on the thumb pads. Incidentally, as an aspiring writer on a minidox, I elected to put the quote mark on the thumb pad too, here (https://github.com/squizzler/qmk_firmware/tree/master/keyboards/minidox/keymaps/RSTHD) is my keymap.

You would really hate the layout I've used on my Kinesis Advantage2 for the last couple of years.  :)
[attach=1]

Here is the comparison using the keyboard layout analyzer here: https://kla.keyboard-design.com/#/main (https://kla.keyboard-design.com/#/main) with the books.short.txt from the RSTHD keyboard layout project:
[attach=2]
(I know these analyzers are only as good as the background assumptions, but the layout works well for me. The only thing I would add is a dedicated backspace key conveniently near the thumb or index finger -- I use [shift]-space, which is normally fine unless I want several backspaces in a row. But I do like the rest of it, and can easily touchtype with it.)

If anyone wants to plop it into a keyboard layout analyzer, I will see if I can attach the file to the post. [attachurl=3]
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: squizzler on Wed, 08 April 2020, 04:59:49
You would really hate the layout I've used on my Kinesis Advantage2 for the last couple of years.  :)

Your layout is very interesting, but as a supporter of Malt and its descendants (of which I regard RSTHD) it certainly does not offend me! When referring to the Malt family I mean layouts that place the 'E' under one of the thumbs. But does your addition of further vowels onto the thumb clusters make it something totally new?

Always remember that Malt layout was designed with the Maltron split keyboard as an integrated system, and all columnar split keyboards are Maltron descendants. Whilst Qwerty and other layouts from staggered boards work fine on columnar, these layouts do not take full advantage of such ergonomics. With so many split columnars such as Ergodox currently available, now is an exciting time for layouts of the Malt family!

Quote
Here is the comparison using the keyboard layout analyzer here:

I am puzzled as to what the two variants of RSTHD might be. Would those of us on 'columnar' split keyboards be using 'Ergolinear 2' and the other one being that arrangement adapted onto a traditional staggered board? Or am I using something out of date?

Quote
(I know these analyzers are only as good as the background assumptions, but the layout works well for me. The only thing I would add is a dedicated backspace key conveniently near the thumb or index finger -- I use [shift]-space, which is normally fine unless I want several backspaces in a row. But I do like the rest of it, and can easily touchtype with it.)

I know what you mean; but try deciding what gets the half dozen thumb keys with minidox! I was going round in circles for ages trying to figure the optimum way to use them. I am used to fn+bksp = delete on the MacBook, and I have emulated this so that the bksp becomes del on a layer (actuated by holding space key).
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: squizzler on Sat, 09 May 2020, 07:21:18
Over on the Keyboardio forum the Malt thread (https://community.keyboard.io/t/maltron-layouts/98) has become host to a lively discussion on adapting RSTHD to smaller boards, especially the forthcoming Atreus.

The Atreus (https://shop.keyboard.io/products/keyboardio-atreus) could drastically lower barriers to entry for Malt and RSTHD layouts. It will be mass produced and promises to be more affordable than previous Maltron descendants (Kinesis, *dox, etc). The discreet size and more traditional keyboard construction and styling ought not frighten the horses in your mainstream office environment! It will also have the benefit of all key caps being standard 1x1 size which means they can be rearranged with the 'E' (or indeed anything else) on the thumb home keys.
Title: Re: Introducing the RSTHD layout
Post by: squizzler on Thu, 28 May 2020, 03:13:32
I am pleased to confirm that my own  keymap (https://github.com/qmk/qmk_firmware/tree/master/keyboards/minidox/keymaps/rsthd_combos) for this layout has been inducted to the QMK repository. It is for the Minidox but should also port to the gBoards (https://www.gboards.ca) Gergoplex, whose use of combos was an inspiration for another neat feature. Paired keys on the inner two columns create a virtual extra column each side, again the keys each side of the divide create a virtual centre column, and the the quotation mark is a combo of 'H' and 'N' (air quotes!). Combos are shown in blue in this diagram:
(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/49926249372_77ab8eba95_z.jpg)