Xah keyboard Blog

Xah Keyboard Blog Archive

Xah Emacs Blog

Kinesis/ErgoDox Keyboard Layouts
major rewrite.

Space Cadet Keycaps

random old articles.

added a video. trackball that spins forever. air bearing.
Trackballs That Can Spin

ve.a keyboard 59g42-s389x161
VE.A 96

added a where to buy, on aliexpress

Keyboardio Atreus

Keyboardio recently worked with technomancy to produce the Atreus keyboard.

atreus keyboard by Phil Hagelberg 2015-06-17-s289x217
Atreus 42

Am quite disappointed. Of all great DIY keyboards, they chose to do this 42 keys ultra mini keyboard. Keyboards with less than 60 keys are hand pain inducing, because they force you to use key chords, even for numbers and basic punctuations.

Anyway, here's the unboxing by key switch expert Chyrosran22 at Atreus Keyboard. also, link to their kickstart at bottom of the page.

and here's my review of keyboardio:

keyboardio m1 rgb 44488-s306x204

linux kernel now supports Elecom's trackballs Fn buttons

xah thx sleepnir nope 2020-03-21 ybt3p
xah thanks sleepnir nope 2020-03-21


Ban Key Chords
minor update

coiled braided cable

finally, i knew the name of this thing.

coiled braided cable 2020-03-18 9t9hr
coiled braided usb cable

you have hand pain using a mouse

with that said, check out my recommendations of devices.

Kinesis Freestyle Pro Keyboard wjw7r-s306x204
Kinesis Freestyle Pro Keyboard

Ultimate Hacking vs Kinesis Advantage2

in past 2 months, and now, been typing on UHK. it's excellent. but this week been also back to Kinesis Advantage2 now and then. I must say, Kinesis is GOOD, even better. If it has red switches, i absolutely prefer Kinesis. (i have red switches on UHK)

Logitech G Hub, Worst Mouse Software

Logitech latest gaming software, the g hub, bricked my onboard memory settings for Logitech G502 Mouse

Apparently, the g hub is now mostly cloud based. Logitech few years ago has truly the best software. Most intuitive. But now, the worst. And also greedy. It is problematic to program the onboard memory, forcing you to always rely on their driver software plus internet connection and sending your data to them. Like Razer

When buying a mouse or keyboard, the most important thing is programability and onboard memory. Meaning, set keys to what you want, and plug in the mouse in any computer, and you have your settings, no need to install another software or spend time to config again. Logitech stuff been good. But now like razer, faak. They now focusing on cloud. Require their driver software always present, and internet connection, so they can monitor your usage and sending your stat to them so they can sell data. But the faaking idiotic gamers, teen whatnot, think oh my god so cool auto profiles etc shit.

New Firmware and Model of Kinesis Advantage2 Keyboard

Kinesis Advantage2 Keyboard Review

installed new firmware. my kinesis advantage2 is dated 2016-08, when it came out. apparently, they have newer version. New version has 4M memory. Mine has 2M. New version has visual keyboard programing software called SmartSet, bundled in the memory. (so, no install required) For mine model, you have to download it.


logitech's new keyboard, G815/G915

logitech g915 52yb6-s450x139
Logitech G815/G915

xah on discord on keyboard

xah on keyboard discord 2020-03-10 cjbqy
xah on keyboard discord 2020-03-10 cjbqy
xah on keyboard discord 2020-03-10 wz4wk
xah on keyboard discord 2020-03-10 wz4wk

for emacs stuff, read Emacs Keys

and read this for a comprehensive overview on the keyboard software side emacs and vi: Science of Command Efficiency

Is Keyboard Tenting Important?

zombie death

coronavirus mask, you need to buy. preorder. 3M(TM) Particulate Respirator 8210V, N95 Respiratory Protection 10/Box amazon

stock up on food soup


raw organic whey. amazon you need to stock up for zombie death

new model of X-Bows, the Knight

x-bows knight plus xrwj5-s439x142
X-Bows Knight

Bat Chording Keyboard
added a user review. plus other update.

remove 【lenticular brackets】 for keyboard shortcut notation

updated articles. removed 【lenticular brackets】 for keyboard shortcut notation. For example, i used to write 【Ctrl+c】 now it's just Ctrl+c

Seagate Barracuda 120 SSD 2TB Internal Solid State Drive amazon

so, solid state drives are getting cheaper and larger. by the way, is this trend gonna continue, or, what's the technology's limit?

a friend says, yes it's gonna continue.

what's the best device for typing? how about gaming? and what is linear programing?

@Anon21 asks: In your opinion what's the most optimal device to type and game on and what is the most optimal video game keybind layout? (WASD, ESDF, TFGH, IJKL etc.)

That's a complex question. There's no one easy answer.

in general, the specifically designed, weird looking devices, are best, for specific task.

For example, what's the best device for typing? If the typing is speech text, then best is probably google voice input. But if we must restrict to finger operated devices and consider ergonomics and speed, then a stenotype [see Stenotype Machine] is probably best, but, that means we are not counting learning time, and practical inconvenience, cuz you don't have a stenotype on every computer.

So in general, there's ergonomics concern, and practicality concern, for example, Steno machine vs normal PC keyboard vs ergo keyboard like kinesis vs average ergo such as Microsoft or generic split mech keyboard. All has pro and cons.

It's like, multiple variables, and the method to solve such problem is called Linear Programing.

That is, you have variables like potential typing speed capability of the device, long term ergonomic consideration (say 2 hours continuous use per day for 3 years) , convenience consideration (how available is the device), type of input data (speech chat, poem, programing), length of input per day (i.e. How much u actually need to type per day), how long it takes to learn it (e.g. voice vs steno vs other chorded keyboard design), etc. Multiple variables.

For each of these variable, we quantify it. Say 0 to 1. Then, we set satisfaction constraints. for example, the device's ergonomic score must be greater than 0.6, and the potential speed must be greater than 0.5, and learning time required must be less than 0.4, and availability or portability of the device must be greater than 0.6, etc. Then, we measure the scores of each device. Then we check which devices satisfies all inequalities. This is called Linear Programing. And the above is only about the question of: which is the best for typing. Similar can be said for which is best for gaming. There, you have variables like which game exactly, or which category of games, or what kinda mix of games, etc.

How to Avoid Mouse Hand Pain

Valve Steam Controller is no longer made. And, is it good as mouse replacement on a personal computer? updated.

here's history. Valve Steam Trackball Controller

Pen Spinning

xah lee pen spinning dyrpy-s332x189
Pen Spinning

video demo of Kailh BOX Switch

added to Guide to Keyboard Key Switch Mechanisms

video Demo of Different Force-Displacement Curves for Key Press

added to Guide to Keyboard Key Switch Mechanisms

hhkb in anime c0af1-s204x306
Happy Hacking Keyboard Anime

MTGAP layout

following is originally posted on 2017-07-17

apparently, some nerds are still designing keyboard letter layouts.

todo, read

it's like, is x++ faster or x=x+1? Like, keep hacking a dead horse.

it's by Michael Dickens

His layout is called MTGAP layout. Apparently based on evolutionary algorithm.

I haven't looked into detail what he's doing, but he seems to have spent significant effort, for like 10 years.

he's got a list of layouts, more than that i know. But lots of it is now dead link. See http://mdickens.me/typing/alternative_layouts.html

See also:

been using Ultimate Hacking Keyboard in past 10 days. now i put it back in Xah Lee's Best Ergonomic Keyboards

azeron keypad zmfdp
azeron keypad https://www.azeron.eu/

todo. study. create own page. put it on a index page.

two articles on ergonomics.

Microsoft Windows Keyboard Software Guide
updated. New navigation panel. These articles are slightly old.

Ban Mouse Micro Switch

ban mouse micro switch. they always have drag double click problems.

ban mouse button 2020-02-18 c3dm4
ban mouse micro switchs 2020-02-18

my tentative research on best laptops under $1k.

dell inspiron 7000 y6bcf-s318x196
Best Laptop

Kensington Pro Fit Ergonomic Keyboard


new ergo keyboard. haven't studied it yet.

Kensington Pro Fit Ergonomic Wired Keyboard (K75400US) Buy at amazon

Logitech K860 Keyboard hkf6q-s319x196
Logitech Ergo K860 Keyboard

ergo keyboards is getting more popular.

flat ergo comparison

i'd just get X-Bows Keyboard Review

but see also Is Keyboard Tenting Important?

on the keyboard department, did i mention, due to life circumstances, i switched from kinesis of 4 years Kinesis Advantage2 Keyboard Review to uhk Ultimate Hacking Keyboard as main. For a change. we'll see what happens next.

Just redone the navbar. So the navbar is on the left in the following pages Microsoft Windows Keyboard Software Guide

Those pages are a bit old. Because i haven't been on Microsoft Windows much, but most importantly, i started to use programable keyboards, which is superior than OS key programing.

Programable Keyboards with Onboard Memory

Windows: How to swap Mouse Buttons: Right-Click, Middle-Click

PC Reveal keyboard
new photos. thanks to Zumwelt Zumleben

Keyboard Articles Index
updated, 698 articles on keyboard and input devices

Apple MacBook Touch Bar

keyboard history. The ergo revolution due to Microsoft. One of rare instance where Apple's version failed.

Microsoft Natural Keyboard

“the best way to avoid injury is not to go pro!”
Bad Keyboard Advice from Programers

Filmmaker Taika Waititi slams Apple keyboards during post-Oscar interview. Funny. see Worst Apple Designs

Mac Keyboard Shortcuts

keymouse 2018 009f1-s333x188

Keymouse stops making.

Wacom Drawing Tablets Spy on You


Huion Inspiroy H640P drawing tablet a5fc0-s250x250
Drawing Tablet

Alt Graph Key, Compose Key, Dead Key

Xah Lee's Best Ergonomic Keyboards
think i gonna remove UHK and Mistel Barocco. Can't consider keyboard sans physical arrow keys as best.

seems Mistel Barocco keyboard is discontinued? Mistel Barocco Split Keyboard


Apple extended keyboard 1 1987-s391x160
Apple Extended Keyboard, 1987
Apple Keyboard m0487 cbgm7-s289x217
Apple Keyboard II (M0487) (1990)
apple bondi blue imac keyboard-s289x217
Apple USB keyboard, 1999. (Bondi Blue iMac)
Apple pro keyboard german layout 92684-s414x151
Apple Pro Keyboard (A1048), 2003

Apple Keyboard History ⌨

Sony BKE-2011 keyboard 86333-s376x166
Sony BKE-2011 keyboard

List of Keyboards with Topre Switch

Guide to Keyboard Key Switch Mechanisms

Varmilo EC (Electro Capacitance) Switch

Xah Keyboards

gergo keyboard

new toy arrived

gergo keyboard 20200121 zgxyd-s353x177
Gergo 50
xahlee 20200116 j7377-s
xahlee 20200116 9d7gg-s

blank keys, tenting degree, and chord shortcut vs single key sequence

some of my pushy answer on xahlee discord.

ah here. Das Keyboard, the one that started blank keys idiocy Das Keyboard

Blank Keycaps = nerd idiocy. Blank Keycaps vs Labeled Keys

the proper understanding of degrees of tenting Scientific Research on Keyboard Ergonomics

regarding key sequences instead of chord, it cannot be done with keyboard firmware. it must be done in the app or os. and most of them can't do it. e.g. try to make a key sequence do Ctrl+c

Ban Key Chords

on linux, LXDE/Openbox can do it see Linux: LXDE/Openbox, Change Keyboard Shortcuts but otherwise difficult.

but if you use Emacs, it's easy. Define Key Sequence Emacs: Define Key Sequence
Elecom HUGE Trackball bq2x6 s244x256
Elecom HUGE

added a video of ball spin

ripster irl 2020-01-19-s224x280
Keyboard Scientist

old. the birth of xah-fly-keys

todo Logitech G513 Keyboard

now go buy a amazon Sony Xperia 5 Unlocked Smartphone
Make economy great again. help Bezos richer to help your life more convenient.

amazon basics trackball 8hdby-s223x280
AmazonBasics G5W

this one is no buy. updated.

ergonomic posture-s204x307
Proper Sitting Posture
CST 2545-5W trackball 19924-s354x177

L-Trac is back. now sold by X-Key.

Kensington Pro Fit Trackball nym3h-s259x241
Kensington Pro Fit
rose quartz sphere ct35v-s250x250
Trackball Ball Sizes and Replacement


thinking of taking out my logitech marble for a spin


Obsolete Mouses todo

imac mouse-s289x217
Apple iMac G3 mouse
spinner key 2018-02-27 9kgty-s345x181
Spinner Keycap

Ergodash with knob

ergodash ny6jq-s333x188
Ergodash 68

new photo, and thanks Matt B for donation.

keymouse 2018 009f1-s333x188

more photos. One of our friend, Kathy, just bought this. Now, among xah talk show circles, we have 3 person who have keymouse.

trelc verticle mouse j2q3y-s197x316
vertical gaming

adde a video.

NEC PC9800 c6264-s289x217
NEC PC9800 Series Keyboard


Kensington Orbit Trackball with Scroll Ring m4kyj-s256x244
Kensington Orbit Trackball with Scroll Ring

grey version came out.

input devices and 3d printed improvement, by Lindy Design Lab

You Can't Buy Ergonomic Mice Like This
Dec 30, 2019
Lindy Design Lab

great video. She is a 3d modeler.

Lubrigante Keyboard 5rbz4-s329x190
Lubrigante Keyboard

Sabrent Rocket Q 2TB NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD High Performance Solid State Drive R/W 3200/2900MB/s (SB-RKTQ-2TB) Buy at amazon

OLOy Memory DDR4 RAM 32GB (1x32GB) 2666 MHz CL19 1.2V 260-Pin Laptop Gaming SODIMM Upgrade for 2019 iMac 27-inch with Retina 5K Display, Late 2018 Mac Mini (MD4S322619MZSC) Buy at amazon

todo. remove. no longer made. Havit RGB Mouse

todo. no longer made? CM MasterKeys PBT Keyboard

How to Change macOS Keybinding

Surface Pro 4 929a7-s1270x953-s289x217
Microsoft Surface Pro
Sony DPT-RP1 B Digital Paper 20200104 xq58w-s333x188
Sony Digital Paper

people are still buying CODE Keyboard

Xah Keyboard Blog Archive

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