gwalla: (Default)
The AlphaGrip "3D keyboard". Looks sort of like an XBox controller (any surprise it's meant for gamers?), but with a lot more buttons. Another variation on chording systems, I think. Funky.
gwalla: (magma)
Well, I've compiled my "Unicode keyboard". I've made a few changes since I presented an earlier draft: the B key was filled with B-with-topbar, the "reversed question mark" was removed (not the Spanish inverted one; that's still there),  "L With Middle Dot" was replaced with lambda, the AltGr+/ dead key was replaced with a simple fraction slash, and several characters (planetary and astrological symbols, card suits, etc.) were added to the backslash and pipe dead keys.

Unfortunately, a couple of changes seem to have been made for me: when compiling, it seems that MS KLC dumped a few of my dead keys. Fortunately, none were super-important, but still, it's annoying. AltGr+1 (roman numerals) was one of the ones that died. The others were AltGr+shift+space, which I was using for additional kinds of spaces, and AltGr+&, which I was using for some oddball stuff ("care of" symbol, "place of interest sign"/command key symbol, and a few others). The irritating part is that it didn't just drop the dead-key character lists, it actually left those key combos unassigned, so now trying to type them will make Windows beep at you.

(The instructions & such may seem familiar; they're copy-pasted from my previous keyboard postings, just altered to reflect this particular keymap)

Download & Install )Usage (basic characters) )Usage (dead key combinations) )
I hope somebody finds this useful.

I also hope it's gotten keymap-tinkering out of my system for a while.
gwalla: (magma)
I've been working on a "US Unicode" keymap off and on lately. It should be more "off" than "on"; MS Keyboard Layout Creator seems to have become my procrastination tool of choice aside from the Internet. Anyway, it's not done, but it seems to be shaping up nicely. It's a lot more ad hoc than my US Latin-1 keymap; instead of being designed to make characters from a well-defined, limited charset easily accessible, it's just meant to make a bunch of characters from the Unicode repertoire that I thought would be handy or just nifty usable.

Although I'm calling it "US Unicode", it obviously doesn't (and won't) contain the entire Unicode repertoire. That'd be impossible in a simple keymap. Instead, it provides a bunch of (mostly non-decomposable) characters from the Unicode Latin ranges, the more common Combining Diacritical Marks (not including some of the IPA diacritics and particularly obscure ones), plus some General Punctuation, and a smattering of Greek, Mathematical Symbols, Arrows, and other stuff. The repertoire should, I believe, cover all of the characters necessary to write the languages covered by the ISO Latin charsets (but using combining diacritics instead of precomposed accented characters) plus Vietnamese, and more.

If you see anything that doesn't make sense, or doesn't seem like a good idea, or if you just have any ideas, please tell me. More than the Latin-1 keymap, this one is "just for fun", but I still want it to be handy.

Here's what I have so far [warning: long!] )

Dead key combinations )

Future development )

This has got to be one of the geekiest hobbies ever devised, bar none.
gwalla: (magma)
Since I wanted access to the entire Latin-1 repertoire of characters, I installed the "United States (International)" keymap. Unfortunately, it's sort of a pain to use, since some regular keys are defined as "dead keys" (you hit the key and then another to produce a character). The most irritating is probably the quote key, which is a dead key to add acute accents when unshifted and to add umlaut/diæresis when shifted—this resulted in a lot of accidental accents whenever I forgot and tried to type a quote mark normally (under US-International, you have to type the quote key and then space to get a quote). So, I created my own keymap which I believe improves on US-International. I've found it quite handy. I'm releasing it to the public in hopes that other people will find it useful too.

Download & Install )Usage )

EDIT: The file is now kindly hosted by John Cowan.
gwalla: (Default)
Want

Too bad it's not USB, and doesn't have windows and menu keys. But...it's got Sun-style editing keys! Rawk! The same company also makes an APL keyboard.

I was joking here but I really would like a keyboard with all sorts of extra keys. It wouldn't be useful, but it'd be still cool to have. I mean, it's not like I ever used the editing keys when I used the SPARCstations in the computer labs at USC*. And the windows keys on a regular PC keyboard work just fine as Super keys. But still, I mean, just look at how nifty a space cadet keyboard is (despite the butt-ugly color scheme)! Add editing keys to the side, some F-keys above, maybe some "Internet keys" (volume control, MP3 track changing, common apps) and an extra mousewheel under the editing keys...now we're talking!

I am the king of feature bloat! Bow down!

*which I used even for just web browsing--they usually didn't have a waiting list like the PCs and Macs, and I could access my UNIX account from any of them so I could keep bookmarks around. I'm just sorry I didn't back up the data I had on them before I left, because I lost a lot of stuff

EDIT: Looking at the users' guide, it seems that the 122-key model doesn't have Sun-style editing keys, it just looks that way. The two-column block on the right consists of the Esc key, the Prt Scr, Scroll Lock, and Pause keys (moved from their usual position above Insert etc.), plus Help, Print, Record, and Play. So, not quite so cool, even though it has a double set of F-keys. Oh well. Maybe when I'm rich I can get them to custom-build me a keyboard...
gwalla: (magma)
From the ultra top secret opers-only channel on Nightstar. This started with ToxicFrog (who was fairly talkative for someone who was supposedly away from his keyboard) complaining about keyboards with extra buttons and keys:

<Pi>    Now I have a wireless kb that I *think* has about 170 keys.
<PinkFreud>    jeebus.
<PinkFreud>    only 170?
<Pi>    Well, not quite...  But it is a standard 104 layout, plus 23 extra keys arranged around the outside.
<Kazriko>    hmm. lesse, 101+22 keys on this, and 2 wheels.
<Kazriko>    also wireless.
<PinkFreud>    laptop keyboard.  not wireless, unless you count the laptop.
<Pi>    Ah.  I was counting each wheel as 2 keys, because each one emulates two keypresses (scrlup, scrldn) so it's 104 + 19 + 2 wheels
<Kazriko>    hmm, well, one's more of a volume knob than a wheel.
<Kazriko>    i counted the wheel as 1 key, plus a wheel, (you can push it in as well.)
<gwalla>    I want one of those crazy Lisp machine keyboards
<gwalla>    that have like 357 keys
<Pi>    Then there's the 7-button + wheel mouse....
<Kazriko>    my home mouse is a 4 button plus wheel,
<PinkFreud>    i still like the old three-button mice.
<PinkFreud>    the ones you can now only find on *nix workstations.
<Kazriko>    heh, my linux system has a nice 2 button mouse.
<Kazriko>    and a nice 3 button trackball.
<PinkFreud>    i'm using a three button (wheel) mouse, though.
<Pi>    ... Five-button + wheel trackball at work...  :)
<Pi>    (and ironically, I miss those extra three buttons at work)
<PinkFreud>    i do have two granite sgi mice w/ 3 buttons though
*    ToxicFrog[AFK] is still looking for a proper DEC RT101.
<PinkFreud>    complete with the requisite sgi workstations
<PinkFreud>    i'm just nuts that way
<gwalla>    If somebody made a space-cadet keyboard with function keys and "Internet keys", I'd be all over it
<gwalla>    more keys == more BETTER!
*    ToxicFrog[AFK] eyes gwalla.
<gwalla>    hehe
<gwalla>    http://www.faqs.org/docs/jargon/S/space-cadet-keyboard.html
*    ToxicFrog[AFK] hands gwalla a small pamphlet reading "Hardware Bloat: Just Say No."
<gwalla>    with windows keys and menu keys and open and closed apple keys!!!1
*    gwalla twitches
<ToxicFrog[AFK]>    ...he's gone.
*    ToxicFrog[AFK] shoots gwalla humanely.

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Garth

December 2011

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