Two Kool, Slightly Kooky Keyboards

bgerber

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\"A keyboard is a keyboard is a keyboard\" isn\'t quite true any more. We look at a small, light, rollup, coffee-proof fabric keyboard and one that says bye, bye to QWERTY to see if there\'s anything new under the sun that you\'ll actually want to type on.
 

BobtheDead

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I'm guessing inputting over a direct brain-to-computer link will take a little longer.
There was a documentary concerning that and the end-users did not seem to enjoy it. It was called The Matrix.
 

kenshi

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After seeing that odd key layout on the NSK keyboard (which is hideous, btw...looks like a Fisher Price "My First Keyboard") I started looking around for exactly why qwerty is layed out the way it is, and stumbled across this:

Dvorak Keyboard

If there's anyone out there looking to learn a new key layout, this seems to be most efficient way to go.
 

dragon-fly

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After seeing that odd key layout on the NSK keyboard (which is hideous, btw...looks like a Fisher Price "My First Keyboard") I started looking around for exactly why qwerty is layed out the way it is, and stumbled across this:

Dvorak Keyboard

If there's anyone out there looking to learn a new key layout, this seems to be most efficient way to go.
nice man. you just made me want to learn more and heck, i just learned what those tdots on my keyboard were for and what touch-typing was, even though i already knew how to do it, i didnt know what it was called!

it even went as far as making me search for betamax. lmao.
 

edlight

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Yes, the Dvorak is heaven. You can set it in Windows XP in the control panel regional and language options.

I think it's about 500 words you can type on the home row alone. And it eliminates troublesome pairs except in abbreviations.

For instance, to type "testing" in qwerty, you leave the home row for 5 keys, but only 1 in dvorak.

XP has a bug where if you use the hot keys to switch between querty and dvorak it goes back to the default layout when you switch between programs.
 

yellowjacket

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Wow, I was interested in the fabric keyboard until I saw it cost $200. 8O

Oh well, maybe if it gets to ~$50 I'll give it a try.
 

bgerber

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Your comment on not knowing you were touch typing reminds me of the time I first started programming, in the original Dartmouth BASIC no less. I used all the variables from A to Z and wondered what to do next. So I tried A(1) and it worked and then A(2) and it worked. About a week later I showed a friend my brilliant discovery and he told me I had discovered arrays, matrix-like variables with multiple data holders, A(1), A(2), A(3), A(n). Then I learned FOR - NEXT loops and I never again left the world of computing.

Barry
 

joex444

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Yes, the Dvorak is heaven. You can set it in Windows XP in the control panel regional and language options.
I switched over to dvorak in Februrary '05. To really do this successfully, though, you have to completly change. I had to switch my home PC, laptop (that's fun because some of the right hand side keys are smaller, like the semicolon which is now "s"), and work PC. There was a learning curve of about 3 months, and I probably use a PC atleast 3 hours a day, everyday.

For anyone who really thinks QWERTY is just stupid, dvorak makes a lot of sense. Putting all the vowels on your left hand, in the "home row," makes typing much quicker, even though I could type about 60-70 WPM in QWERTY. Though I haven't tested myself recently, I was doing about 75-80 WPM in dvorak last year, so I'm probably capable of 80+ now.

So there could be a speed increase for some slower QWERTY typists, but the best benefit I've found is that, like you said, you can type more words on the home row. What this actually means in practice though, is that you don't have to move your fingers as far to type something, so you can type more without having your fingers hurt.

Tom's had an article, probably back in '04, about dvorak keyboards. I tried it then, but didn't want to spend time adapting. I'm glad I did.

Here's a real bonus: very few people can type in dvorak, so if you setup your PC to only use dvorak, nobody can use it but you :) There's some real security. I had IT ask me "what language is that keyboard in?"... I replied, appropriately, "English."
 
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