Xah keyboard Blog
Put $5 in my patreon. https://www.patreon.com/xahlee
2018-09-30 work in progress Arrow Keys
2018-10-01 work in progress DEC VT220 Terminal
ㄅㄆㄇㄈ ㄉㄊㄋㄌ ㄍㄎㄏ ㄐㄑㄒ ㄓㄔㄕㄖ ㄗㄘㄙ ㄚㄛㄜㄝ ㄞㄟㄠㄡ ㄢㄣㄤㄥ ㄦ ㄧㄨㄩ that's zhuyin, a phonetic system for Chinese, we learned in Taiwan. Chinese in china don't know it. They use pinyin. pinyin is very similar, except it uses English alphabets.
you can see zhuyin in keyboard used in Taiwan for input Chinese.
当你看到这个 ㄅㄆㄇㄈ ㄉㄊㄋㄌ 毫无考虑，马上知道这是啥吗？
cc @BContenary @AenonSun @xcv58 @jjustc @cherylnatsu @frankyxhl @shell909090 @ConanChou @r0bertz
twitter poll for mainlainders https://twitter.com/xah_lee/status/1052876445788196864
台湾用。1912发明的. 拼音1950s。和拼音基本一样。 b=ㄅ p=ㄆ m=ㄇ f=ㄈ d=ㄉ d=ㄊ n=ㄋ l=ㄌ. 打字的是，如果是特别排列，可减少按键次数: zhㄓ chㄔ shㄕ rㄖ zㄗ cㄘ sㄙ erㄜ aoㄠ ...
List of Dvorak Keyboards (updated)
and updates to Keyboards without Numeric Keypad
new page on its own.
See also: The Idiocy of Happy Hacking Keyboard
- panel 1 (start from right): Miss Chun, would you tell me your phone account number and password?
- eh? oh, it's...
- panel 3: what ... what's this keyboard?
- it doesn't have many keys.
- eh? how does one type on this?
- it's all blanks, no letters...
- panel 4: on this matter ...
yeah. to be uncouth, the proper term is Japanese style comics, and, Japanese style animation.
lol, ya all irredeemable faux pop fobs
swing it when u got substance
writing about keyboard
started to trickle into actually amassing and writing about Keyboard History ⌨.
Added tens of photos in past month, and started to get a sense of keyboard evolution since 1960s. Keyboard history is a black whole. Well actually, not really. Math is, a hole.
Actually, working on keyboard makes me feel bad. It's petty. A petty thing. Writing comp lang tutorials is bad enough. A dismal petty fak complexity mostly of social causes due to programer idts faks. Dear god, when am i gonna be a real mathematian? God: neva!
history of alt key
The history of the Alt key is a mystery to me still. I bet Marcin Wichary https://twitter.com/mwichary knew the answer.
recently i learned Meta key first appeared on the SAIL keyboard. (hope am correct) I'm not certain the date of SAIL, but must be between 1963 and 1974. SAIL keyboard also has a key labeled ALT. The SAIL became Knight Keyboard and became Space Cadget and other lisp machine keyboards. But in later ones, some of them has Alt Mode instead of Alt. Some also have Alt Lock. But some don't have any type of Alt key, e.g. PN 364000, PN 365407, and Xerox 1109.
it'd be nice if someone can tell us the history.
Also, the Alt on SAIL keyboard is the earliest Alt key i've seen.
The first other apart from lisp line that has Alt i found is: IBM PC model 5150 Keyboard, 1981
now i think the entire modifier business started on lisp machine keyboards, except Shift and Control. The meta alt or super hyper evolved into Mac's Cmd and Option. Alt Graph key may also be evolved from the Alt on lisp machines. The Window key of Microsoft may be inspired from Mac, and Microsoft invented the Menu key (but may be inspired or copy from some Xerox stuff.) Also, keep in mind that the way Alt works in Windows is not the typical modifier. When pressed by itself, it invokes menu, as a leader key of a key sequence. When pressed with other, it call commands, and can also insert chars similar to Alt Graph key. .
todo down the road:
- look at some of the lisp machine manuals. Find out what the “Alt” key or “alt mode” are. Ask old lispers and emacsers.
- check, if the lisp machine's “alt” key is parent of the “alt graph” key idea. Namely, to insert alternate character such as ö.
- find the first non lisp line keyboard that has Alt. e.g. look at IBM's line. e.g. IBM PC model 5150 Keyboard, 1981
- try to find history of Microsoft's Alt key.
- in general, find the original concepts associated with alt and other modifier or special key. is it to insert alt char, or invoke menu? Then, trace out a directed graph of how they became Apple's cmd, opt, Microsoft Windows alt, and menu keys. And the Compose key, and Alt Graph key.
See also: List of Emacs Default Keybinding
IBM Selectric (new page on its own)
much update. and the following on their own pages
emacs keyboard history (work in progress)
Control Key and Capslock Key Positions in Old Keyboards (major rewrite)
many of the following, i added a keyboard layout diagram, or their user manuals.
Apple Keyboard History
updated. and created the following new pages.
discovered romer g keycaps on amazon
DEC VT100 Terminal (added a keyboard layout diagram)
Guide to Keyboard Key Switch Mechanisms (minor updated. Added Romer g liner, logitech RX clicky, and other update)
here's another wireless mechanical keyboard. Looks like they are beginning to appear amazon
now, finally, there's wireless mechanical gaming keyboard.
Touch-Typing in Japan
In Japan, the touch-typing rate even among college students is 15 percent. This rate is much lower than the 85 percent of American college students.
from [Graduate School of Maritime Sciences: Is Typing in Roman Letters the Reason for the Low Proficiency of Japanese Language Typists? By Kobe University. At http://www.kobe-u.ac.jp/en/NEWS/topics/2014_06_13_01.html ]
See also: Japanese Keyboard Layouts
added to TRON Keyboard
Pirixx is a German company. Seems promising. Before, i thought it's a cheap nameless brand.
See also: Trackball History
See also: Helix Keyboard
Design of Math Symbols Input System (minor update)
updated on why programable keyboard
some news about buying 2 of them and use together as a split keyboard. May be a problem on the Mac.
trackball vs mouse
here's epic trackball playing fps (battlefield 1) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhY0LcvYyiE
and here's epic trackball playing osu https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfbPwAYdemU
yes, the trackball am refering to is same as you are using, the Logitech Trackman Marble. here's my review and photo of me with it Logitech Trackman Marble Review yes, it's 300 dpi only. i've been sloppy on reddit here.
there is some debate in the comment here you might find interesting Trackball vs Mouse, and How to Choose a Trackball
and i think a “scientific” way to judge is to play osu with different devices. i have collected video of them here Test Your Mousing Efficiency!
japan diy helix keyboard carrying case. nice.
See also Helix Keyboard Helix Keyboard
mouse and trackball, dpi, internal acceleration?
nah, i don't think this makes sense.
as far as i know, no trackball has internal acceleration. Actually, i don't actually know a mouse that has acceleration built in, though i've heard they exist.
there's lots myth about this topic, and seems to be a perennial obsession since optical mouse around 1998 or so.
polling rate does affect cursor speed. e.g. if you have a gaming mouse, and you set polling rate from 1k hz to 0.5k hz, you can notice a speed up in cursor speed, even the dpi is set to 1200 and didn't change.
on linux, the os acceleration is typically, when certain distance is reached within a given time, then multiplier kicks in.
so the curve looks like, beginning with a small flat segment, then a straight line going up. (x axes is speed, y is distance traveled)
i think ms windows acceleration does the same, but not sure.
trackball dpi has very diff effect than mouse dpi. The larger the ball size and smoothness (e.g. can it spin), the more dpi it feels. imagine a maglev ball that can spin for 10 seconds and ball size of palm like in some arcade games. such trackball, even technically 300 dpi, will feel like 3000 dpi.
you can see many comments here (my page) Trackball vs Mouse, and How to Choose a Trackball
for lots discussions. There are many nerds who created custom acceleration software for Microsoft Windows. But i think it's not worth the effort. Just get a nice mouse or trackball with good enough dpi, and arguably turn on acceleration.
to trackball or not trackball
nah, i don't think there's any evidence at all.
i've read a lot articles about trackballs , and am obsessed about how it compared to mouse as a input system, since 1990s. i actually didn't own any, untill few years ago.
now i've used a few trackballs daily for a few years, and i'd say, nah.
there are some wiz kids who use trackball more proficient than mousers at FTP shooter. it's on YouTube. i'll find the link if you need.
I also conclude, trackball can't be controlled as precisely as mouse either. e.g. when you have to say aim at the close window box quickly.
one easy test is to write your first name in print on screen with trackball and mouse, as fast as possible. Am sure, vast majority will be more accurate with less time by using mouse, given same amount of time/training with each device.
trackball is just in general easier to use, and easier on hand.
that video https://www.reddit.com/user/SynBogaNajwyzszego is most annoying. how do we know he's using trackball? well, maybe trust can be established from his reputation or his other video recording showing trackball in parts of the screen... but still, yeah, we need to see that video.
the Logitech Trackman Marble is ancient. I have it. Even last month, i tried to use it again, but decided to put it away. The resolution is too low. (something like 800 dpi?) yes, i have acceleration on. but i also noticed, on the Mac, it makes the cursor jump.
(one interesting thing about polling rate i discovered is that, when OS acceleration is on, higher dpi can make the cursor moving speed significantly slower. here's my story: few months ago i got logitech g502. it has 1k Hz polling rate by default. I have acceleration on. And i set dpi to 1200. And i have another logitech mouse plugged in, the g600, also set to 1200 dpi but polling rate at 250Hz. Then, i noticed, the g502 is a lot slower. If i reduce its polling rate to 500hz, then it becomes faster. while doing all these, i have also my trackball plugged in, the ancient logitech trackman marble. The trackball becomes very jumpy sometimes (when cpu is busy or something) when acceleration is set to highest. )
apparently, you can still find this in trash if you are lucky.
updated. thx to Max P.
Steno, PianoText, Michela, Englebart
twitter discussion. https://twitter.com/johnkitchin/status/1026206042936340480
been thinking that too. Something like Akai MPK Mini could work. there's already midi/usb/key interface. @batchout has done it. and there's steno/pianotext/michela as “layouts”. I've been really wanting to do. think it'd be most efficient. Not sure what's the long term effect on hand.
am thinking, would take ~6 months to do this project. e.g. so others can just buy a mini controller keyboard, install software, and read tutorial, as complete PC keyboard replacement, including for ctrl etc shortcuts. (and maybe 2 months to become fluent)
as a personal project i think it'd be very interesting. it can include many ways to do emacs commands. i think the downside is, effort cost is big, but 0 commercial prospect, cuz most people don't want new input system. e.g. maybe 1% of emacs fan might actually buy/try.
See: Input Devices
Rubber Feet for your keyboard
Discovered this product. Rubber Feet, bumper pads Buy at amazon
now, added letter frequency.
Truly Ergonomic Keyboard 2018, incoming!
If you have a question, put $5 at patreon and message me.