Author Topic: Truly Ergonomic Unboxing  (Read 51600 times)

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Offline boli

  • Posts: 350
Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #400 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 03:28:51 »
Hmm, the Alt <-> Tab distance looks exactly the same on the 109 model, though the Alt key is half size. Unless you have very small hands you'll still be able to Alt-Tab with one hand, though without a doubt it will take some time to adjust to the new fingers used.

Same for the matrix layout, you'll get used to it and most likely notice that it's much more comfortable than the traditional staggered rows layout. Enjoy! :)
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline Fobbah

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« Reply #401 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 04:02:46 »
The alt tab distance is indeed the same on the 109 model. And yes, in either configuration it is possible to reach both alt and tab with one hand - but it is a pretty extreme stretch if you're not a pianist or something which kind of defeats the purpose of it being an ergonomic board. More to the point, try reaching alt - shift - tab with one hand in the standard layout (something i do ALL the time to cycle backwards through tabs/windows). Frankly i can't imagine a more uncomfortable and awkward stretch to reach that combination, and sure, you shouldn't be doing such key combinations with one hand if you can avoid it, but if you are mousing while cycling through windows and tabs its a real problem that people are going to have with this layout...

My point is that by splitting up the alt key, you can map alt & control together at the bottom and get a tight group between the alt, ctrl, shift and tab keys, which in my opinion would be a far better configuration. Having extra keys is not a bad thing, especially since the extra keys are positioned in such a way that you wouldn't hit them accidentaly (the far away half of the double sized keys they are made from by splitting in half).



Quote from: boli;508031
Hmm, the Alt <-> Tab distance looks exactly the same on the 109 model, though the Alt key is half size. Unless you have very small hands you'll still be able to Alt-Tab with one hand, though without a doubt it will take some time to adjust to the new fingers used.

Same for the matrix layout, you'll get used to it and most likely notice that it's much more comfortable than the traditional staggered rows layout. Enjoy! :)
Leopold Tenkeyless Blue | TECK 104 Blue | Noppoo Choc Mini Blue | Noppoo Choc Mini Red |Noppoo Choc Mini Brown

Blues are awesome.

Offline boli

  • Posts: 350
Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #402 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 05:36:24 »
Good points, Alt+Shift+Tab would definitely be very awkward to operate with one hand by default. Some remapping should help. You probably already checked out Architect's TECK notes. He also had Ctrl + Win + Alt on the bottom corners.

I haven't given my 105 TE a real try yet (still waiting on the firmware remapping software). I think I'd do these remappings to start things off:
- Both Shifts would move one position down, to their "normal" position
- Left Space would become Command
- The key in the original left Shift position (Caps Lock position on a conventional board) would become Backspace
- The key in the original Enter position would become Option (for left handed Command + Option actions, which I use frequently, to switch virtual desktops for example)
- The key in the original Backspace position would become Enter
- I'd probably also swap Ctrl (on right Alt with Mac settings) with Option (on left Alt with Mac settings)
« Last Edit: Tue, 07 February 2012, 05:45:21 by boli »
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline sordna

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #403 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 12:49:03 »
Just an ergonomic note here: Pushing multiple keys with one hand is much more strenuous for the hands than single key presses, so if you are concerned about RSI or carpal tunnel syndrome, it's best to develop the habit of sharing the load between your hands, and do 2 handed combinations.
For example always use the Shift opposite to the letter/symbol you are trying to type. Same goes with alt-tab. Of course, with 3-key combos, you will have to push 2 keys with one hand, but still, 2 keys with one hand and 1 with the other is less strenuous than 3 keys with one hand.
Kinesis Contoured Advantage LF with Cherry MX Red switches / Extra keys mod / O-ring dampening mod / Dvorak layout. ErgoDox with buzzer and LED mod.
Also: Kinesis Advantage Classic, Kinesis Contoured Model 110, Data911 TG3, Fingerworks Touchstream LP, KBC Poker (Cherry MX Red), IBM Space Saving keyboard (Buckling spring), Goldtouch GTU-0077 keyboard

Offline sordna

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« Reply #404 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 12:51:28 »
Just an ergonomic note here: Pushing multiple keys with one hand is much more strenuous for the hands than single key presses, so if you are concerned about RSI or carpal tunnel syndrome, it's best to develop the habit of sharing the load between your hands, and do 2 handed combinations.
For example always use the Shift opposite to the letter/symbol you are trying to type. Same goes with alt-tab. Of course, with 3-key combos, you will have to push 2 keys with one hand, but still, 2 keys with one hand and 1 with the other is less strenuous than 3 keys with one hand.
If you focus on sharing the load between hands, you can break the old habit after a while.
Kinesis Contoured Advantage LF with Cherry MX Red switches / Extra keys mod / O-ring dampening mod / Dvorak layout. ErgoDox with buzzer and LED mod.
Also: Kinesis Advantage Classic, Kinesis Contoured Model 110, Data911 TG3, Fingerworks Touchstream LP, KBC Poker (Cherry MX Red), IBM Space Saving keyboard (Buckling spring), Goldtouch GTU-0077 keyboard

Offline Icarium

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« Reply #405 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 13:46:16 »
Sticky modifiers!
I had a sig once but it's gone. It used to display an icon of a Kinesis. Just imagine that.

Offline boli

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« Reply #406 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 14:34:35 »
Quote from: Icarium;508429
Sticky modifiers!

Read about that here some time ago and gave it a try (OS X). I think I could have gotten used to sticky Shift, the other modifiers not so much. Are you using them?
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline sordna

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« Reply #407 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 14:38:37 »
Quote from: boli;508450
Read about that here some time ago and gave it a try (OS X). I think I could have gotten used to sticky Shift, the other modifiers not so much. Are you using them?

You don't need to do it on the OS. Your Kinesis Advantage supports it, so to make a modifier key sticky just do: modifier+Program+F6
Repeating the sequence turns it off.

EDIT: What's nice is modifiers are independent. You can make just one of your shifts (or any other modifiers) sticky, so your left shift for example can be sticky and your right one normal, or vice versa, or both.
« Last Edit: Tue, 07 February 2012, 14:48:08 by sordna »
Kinesis Contoured Advantage LF with Cherry MX Red switches / Extra keys mod / O-ring dampening mod / Dvorak layout. ErgoDox with buzzer and LED mod.
Also: Kinesis Advantage Classic, Kinesis Contoured Model 110, Data911 TG3, Fingerworks Touchstream LP, KBC Poker (Cherry MX Red), IBM Space Saving keyboard (Buckling spring), Goldtouch GTU-0077 keyboard

Offline boli

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #408 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 15:35:09 »
Oh nice, thank you! Maybe I should reread that manual, it's been a couple years. :)

I just tried it out for a little bit and noticed that when typing Shift and then two keys in quick succesion both of the characters will be upper case (which is pretty handy when typing () I just noticed). It doesn't happen when typing the two keys with a tiny pause in between. At first I thought it was only when pressing both Shifts simultaneously (which I tried hoping to get surprised with a Caps Lock feature ;)), and then typing 2 letters, but a single Shift press is enough. When typing fast it happens occasionally.

Are you using this feature?
« Last Edit: Tue, 07 February 2012, 15:43:36 by boli »
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline sordna

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #409 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 16:33:17 »
I learned something too! Didn't know you could type multiple capital letters if you are quick. I managed to type 4 capital letters in a row with one sticky shift press. I don't really use this feature, but have used alternatives to caps lock via setxkbmap options such as caps:shiftlock (which converts caps lock to shift lock) and I've also used shift:both_capslock (both shifts together toggling caps lock) at a time I had Caps Lock mapped to AltGr. I am a full time Linux user by the way, and there's tons of modifier options available!

Anyway, I can see sticky keys being useful for one-handed keyboarding.
Kinesis Contoured Advantage LF with Cherry MX Red switches / Extra keys mod / O-ring dampening mod / Dvorak layout. ErgoDox with buzzer and LED mod.
Also: Kinesis Advantage Classic, Kinesis Contoured Model 110, Data911 TG3, Fingerworks Touchstream LP, KBC Poker (Cherry MX Red), IBM Space Saving keyboard (Buckling spring), Goldtouch GTU-0077 keyboard

Offline Rajagra

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #410 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 17:05:04 »
I'd prefer if the Tab and Backspace keys if they were swapped on the TE. This would make backspacing much easier (for me). I don't use Tab so often. This change would also make Alt-Tabbing one-handed easier.
Also ... it's rather a bad idea to have Backspace between two keys that commit data.

Offline sordna

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« Reply #411 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 17:13:43 »
Those of you with a TE, can you ask them when they anticipate to have the programming software available? Also, will it be for all platforms the keyboard officially supports (Windows, Mac, Linux) ?
Kinesis Contoured Advantage LF with Cherry MX Red switches / Extra keys mod / O-ring dampening mod / Dvorak layout. ErgoDox with buzzer and LED mod.
Also: Kinesis Advantage Classic, Kinesis Contoured Model 110, Data911 TG3, Fingerworks Touchstream LP, KBC Poker (Cherry MX Red), IBM Space Saving keyboard (Buckling spring), Goldtouch GTU-0077 keyboard

Offline erw

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #412 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 17:53:07 »
Quote from: sordna;508455
modifier+Program+F6


Sorry for off topic, but this is cool! It has a big drawback compared to sticky keys in X though. In X you can still hold the sticky modifiers down to use as regular modifiers, which is essential for selecting text with the keyboard (outside of vim).
Kinesis Advantage LF (MX Red), Kinesis Advantage (MX Brown), Ergodox (MX Red), Colemak

Offline heuristicist

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« Reply #413 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 18:06:53 »
Ugh, the alt+tab thing hadn't occurred to me. I ordered the 104 with blues, and should be getting it soon. I actually wish they had kept caps lock around, because I always map it to escape (yes, I'm a vim user). I sure hope this ends up being worth it... I guess I could always take advantage of their 30-day return policy and get a 109 instead, but honestly I do want my keyboard to look nice and having a couple of blank keycaps is bit of a turn-off. (I am not one for an entirely blank keyboard either, as I usually look down to find the F-keys and sometimes---rarely---a number or symbol key).

Regarding asking them about the reprogramming software... we can try but I don't think we'll get anywhere. I sent them three emails about my order and didn't get a single acknowledgement or response, and then I randomly got a shipping notice last Friday. I don't think we'd get very far if were to ask about the reprogramming software.

Offline kuato

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« Reply #414 on: Tue, 07 February 2012, 20:07:25 »
Quote from: boli;507993
Hey kuato, glad you got your keyboard. I'm looking forward to reading your experiences down the line.
As for the Shifts, they threw me off too, but I hear you'll get used to them (unless you decide to move them back via software).

Thanks boli.

I just got back from work and am spending some more time on it. It's amazing how quickly I've grown accustomed to the key placements already. Once my hands got situated at the proper angle, the typing started to feel far more natural to me. The shift key also became more comfortable if I remember to keep my fingers close to the home row. My typing style is such that they are hovering in anticipation over the home row. Then muscle memory takes over and my pinky stabs down on where the shift would be on my MS Natural. Keeping my "form" tighter has helped in this regard. There will definitely be some things that take getting used to. My muscle memory hates that some of the punctuation is on the left now. I also need to get used to hitting enter with my thumb. All in good time, I guess.

I also code in brace heavy syntax so it might be worthwhile to remap the right hand shift and control to the brace keys. My hands tend to favor using the left hand modifiers for some reason (bad habit?)

The smaller form factor is great. I didn't think it would be that big of a deal, but coming from an MS Natural, it's quite substantial.

Quote from: heuristicist;508666
Ugh, the alt+tab thing hadn't occurred to me. I ordered the 104 with blues, and should be getting it soon. I actually wish they had kept caps lock around, because I always map it to escape (yes, I'm a vim user). I sure hope this ends up being worth it... I guess I could always take advantage of their 30-day return policy and get a 109 instead, but honestly I do want my keyboard to look nice and having a couple of blank keycaps is bit of a turn-off. (I am not one for an entirely blank keyboard either, as I usually look down to find the F-keys and sometimes---rarely---a number or symbol key).

Haha. I'm a vim user as well and ESC to Capslock is the first remap I do when setting up a new system. It really messes me up when I hop onto someone else's computer. I'm sure you've seen everything go to hell when Capslock is actually on... :)

Offline boli

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #415 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 01:12:30 »
Quote from: erw;508650
Sorry for off topic, but this is cool! It has a big drawback compared to sticky keys in X though. In X you can still hold the sticky modifiers down to use as regular modifiers, which is essential for selecting text with the keyboard (outside of vim).

Right, Shift selection doesn't work with the Advantage sticky Shift. :( Time to turn it off. The multiple shifted letters when one is quick don't help either.

Quote from: heuristicist;508666
I actually wish they had kept caps lock around, because I always map it to escape (yes, I'm a vim user).

I assume you mean at the location it's usually at? Because does have a Caps Lock at the top. Personally I like it this way, but then I don't have or use a Caps on my Advantage. I hope you'll find a close enough key to map esc to (possibly move Ctrl to the left space bar and use the original left Ctrl for esc; or use the left space bar for esc if you prefer; Optionally swap Ctrl and Shift before you do any of this, in case you'd rather not get used to the new Shift location)

Quote from: kuato;508784
I also code in brace heavy syntax so it might be worthwhile to remap the right hand shift and control to the brace keys. My hands tend to favor using the left hand modifiers for some reason (bad habit?)

Happy to read you're getting used to it. :) As for the bad habit, I guess it is one. Personally I also do it occasionally for Shift, which is something I'm trying to fix. With other modifiers I think I mostly do them one handedly, as the right hand is on the mouse quite often.
« Last Edit: Wed, 08 February 2012, 01:38:10 by boli »
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline Fobbah

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #416 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 02:57:40 »
So far it hasn't been that positive for me, i was using it at work today and while i could "adjust" to the new key positions for regular typing pretty quickly, I simply found it too distracting to get any work done when coding and just wound up reaching for my choc mini.

However it is a pretty big shift in layout, so with time i will probably get used to it - we'll see. For regular typing i think i would have been fine, i'm interested to see how it pans out for development work though.

Still definitely reccomend the 109 over the 104 as there is simply no reason not to get it imho.
Leopold Tenkeyless Blue | TECK 104 Blue | Noppoo Choc Mini Blue | Noppoo Choc Mini Red |Noppoo Choc Mini Brown

Blues are awesome.

Offline boli

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #417 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 05:55:15 »
Hang in there! It took me 2 full weeks to be sure I liked my Advantage and that I could be productive with it. It was like you said: I got used to the matrix layout as such quite quickly, the challenging part was getting used to the modifiers, new position of arrow keys, new position of common keys like Backspace, Enter etc. You use these without thinking, and during the transition phase you have to think about their new location, which feels like a step back. There's nothing but keeping at it though, in time you won't have to think about it any more, and (assuming you agree that most of these changes are for the better, if you think about it) eventually you'll be better off.

It's very similar to learning a new (software) keyboard layout BTW, only that is much harder.

Bear in mind I've only used the TE for quarters of an hour at a time so far, but I do believe it can work well (as others have attested), and I will give it a serious try at some point.
« Last Edit: Wed, 08 February 2012, 06:00:23 by boli »
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline Rajagra

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Truly Ergonomic Unboxing
« Reply #418 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 16:17:51 »
Quote from: Fobbah;509073
Still definitely reccomend the 109 over the 104 as there is simply no reason not to get it imho.

There is a reason. Ctrl, Alt, and Shift are all modifiers, and can be used in combinations. Having them the same (over)size, and one above the other makes perfect sense.
I was sorely tempted to order the 109, but went for the 105 on principle.
Having the Alt keys small, so far away, hidden between other keys, and not in the corner, is pretty much the opposite of ergonomic.

Offline oneproduct

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« Reply #419 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 17:03:07 »
Quote from: Rajagra;509450
There is a reason. Ctrl, Alt, and Shift are all modifiers, and can be used in combinations. Having them the same (over)size, and one above the other makes perfect sense.
I was sorely tempted to order the 109, but went for the 105 on principle.
Having the Alt keys small, so far away, hidden between other keys, and not in the corner, is pretty much the opposite of ergonomic.

I figured that at worst, you could make both the bottom keys be alt, so you could sort of simulate a 2x size alt if you really didn't want to use the two keys for different reasons.
Filco Tenkeyless | Realforce Tenkeyless Variable Silent | Truly Ergonomic | Kinesis Contoured Advantage | IBM Model M SSK | Cherry G80-3600LYC | TG3 w/ trackpad | CM Storm QuickFire Rapid | Ergodox
Kensington Slimblade | RollerMouse Free2 | Logitech M570 | Logitech G500 | Evoluent Vertical Mouse 3
Colemak

Offline heuristicist

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« Reply #420 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 17:12:59 »
Quote from: boli;509040
I assume you mean at the location it's usually at? Because does have a Caps Lock at the top. Personally I like it this way, but then I don't have or use a Caps on my Advantage. I hope you'll find a close enough key to map esc to (possibly move Ctrl to the left space bar and use the original left Ctrl for esc; or use the left space bar for esc if you prefer; Optionally swap Ctrl and Shift before you do any of this, in case you'd rather not get used to the new Shift location)

Yeah, that's what I meant. I find that I tend to exclusively use my left thumb for space (using my right thumb on purpose feels weird, though I'm sure I could get used to it if necessary). So my plan was to use right-space for esc. But this realization of not having alt+tab on one hand might make me use it for alt instead... I think a solution can be found. I just got home and have the keyboard in its box but I have to leave again so I won't get to play with it until later. :(

Quote from: boli;509118
It's very similar to learning a new (software) keyboard layout BTW, only that is much harder.

So maybe I *shouldn't* try to switch to Colemak at the same time as giving the TECK a go...

Quote from: Rajagra;509450
There is a reason. Ctrl, Alt, and Shift are all modifiers, and can be used in combinations. Having them the same (over)size, and one above the other makes perfect sense.
I was sorely tempted to order the 109, but went for the 105 on principle.
Having the Alt keys small, so far away, hidden between other keys, and not in the corner, is pretty much the opposite of ergonomic.

I think the 105 and the 104 are the same but with a different keycap and the corresponding DIP switch in a different position by default. I considered the 105 but decided I'd rather have a Del keycap then a second quote one.

Unfortunately given their funny keycaps it seems unlikely we'd be able to get a good group buy going for the TECK. Then again I'm still pretty new to this community so maybe someone knows better.

Offline boli

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« Reply #421 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 17:45:21 »
Quote from: heuristicist;509488
Yeah, that's what I meant. I find that I tend to exclusively use my left thumb for space (using my right thumb on purpose feels weird, though I'm sure I could get used to it if necessary). So my plan was to use right-space for esc. But this realization of not having alt+tab on one hand might make me use it for alt instead... I think a solution can be found.

Aye, there are loads of possibilities. Putting esc on the left Ctrl key like you suggested and using either of the space bars for Ctrl instead could be a nice option I'd think, though historically using thumb for the "main" modifier key might be more of a Mac thing (I'd call Command the main modifier for Mac OS, and Ctrl for Win/Linux/...)

Quote
So maybe I *shouldn't* try to switch to Colemak at the same time as giving the TECK a go...

Not sure, it could make sense to combine the two periods of "unproductiveness" into one. What I meant is that one is up to acceptable speed with a new keyboard within hours (longer to get really comfortable), whereas it "usually" takes days/weeks to get there with a new layout.
My experience as an example: I could type at least half of my normal speed with the TrulyErgonomic immediately (though I am already used to a grid layout, so YMMW), whereas it took me 3 weeks to get to half my normal speed with Colemak. Getting back to full speed with the Advantage took roughly 3 weeks, whereas it took almost a year with Colemak (I switched to my current Advantage keyboard roughly half a year after switching to Colemak, I wrote about it at the Colemak forum if you're interested). This is of course highly subjective, I suggest checking out the experience threads at the Colemak forums for more variety.

Quote
Unfortunately given their funny keycaps it seems unlikely we'd be able to get a good group buy going for the TECK. Then again I'm still pretty new to this community so maybe someone knows better.

The center column key caps do look quite special :-/, I'll try replacing some others with WASD key caps at some point.
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline heuristicist

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« Reply #422 on: Wed, 08 February 2012, 21:14:39 »
Quote from: boli;509510
The center column key caps do look quite special :-/, I'll try replacing some others with WASD key caps at some point.

Even the regular keycaps vary in size by row, IIRC (their website shows them).

Offline boli

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« Reply #423 on: Thu, 09 February 2012, 01:55:45 »
Quote from: heuristicist;509732
Even the regular keycaps vary in size by row, IIRC (their website shows them).

Yeah, and that's quite normal, as I learned during the WASD Keyboards Kinesis Key Cap Project.

For example, check out these Signature Plastics key cap profiles, or these WASD key cap profiles (the ones labeled R1 to R4) for use in a Kinesis.

I figure most of the TE key caps are quite normal stock keys (possibly all but the center column):


Update: Added actual pictures to my TE thread.
« Last Edit: Thu, 09 February 2012, 12:22:57 by boli »
Keyboard: Kinesis Ergo Advantage (two LF editions with red Cherry switches, one regular with brown switches)
Keyboard layout: basically Colemak, with some remapping to end up with my custom Kinesis Advantage layout
Typing test profiles: typeracer.com / hi-games.net / keybr.com

Offline Tracer

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  • Location: Toronto, Canada
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« Reply #424 on: Thu, 09 February 2012, 14:26:43 »
Quote from: heuristicist;494609
How did that save you $50? I just tried it in CAD vs. USD and it shows for the same price. $229 in USD is still only like $240 CAD after conversion... Since I'm also in TO I wouldn't mind also saving $50 :D


I made an error. It's only about 15-20 savings by buying it properly in CAD. (less now that the exchange is in our favour). I was comparing post tax vs. pre tax pricing by accident. Sorry about that.