Explaining keyboard layout proposals. Fn hotkeys updated, language switching, powertoggles etc

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by comradekingu, Aug 13, 2014.

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Functional layout vs reduced layout

  1. Fullest possible english layout by default (possible for more people to input their language)

    73.7%
  2. Reduced english layout by default (Only possible to input english)

    18.4%
  3. I dont care either way.

    7.9%
  1. comradekingu

    comradekingu Glowing ember

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2011
    Messages:
    4,948
    [​IMG]
    Layout editor link and AltGr layer
     
    Typewriter functionality:
    Each button has three parts [1 2 3]   First is normalclick, second is shift+ and third is AltGr+

    Pressing the first numberbutton  [ 1   !   | ]
    [  1       !          |   ]
    click   shift+    AltGr+
                                 Pressing [ 1   !  | ] produces 1
    Holding shift and  pressing [ 1   !  | ] produces !
    Holding AltGr and pressing [ 1  !   | ] produces |

    Capitalized letters centred because that is the shift modifier. 
    International support:
    [​IMG]

    The green area makes it a functional layout. Typing English and coding <> [ ] { } is the default, and having these keys makes other languages work like normal.
    Select+ language layer. The French use dedicated keys éèçà on 2490. type select+ 2490 to get those.

    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/af5d50ef58629dc32eb90ce6b20a7cb2 German
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/02274efa7dcb2a4cfa8fe78edc99fdd8 Norwegian
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/36943c8cd47eae277eef604ba23003da Swedish
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/9a74350de791e55f39d6ea3b51dd7088Danish
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/6614d31a64365695906ac4785540e7d1Finnish
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/86289bce3766f33c2cbf1ab4138abb31Spanish
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/040628e506e65f7c36dda842bc4e4bba Italian ?
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/942b4fbc50c9576b4a8aee71190fa4a8 Belgian
    http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/c0487fee36407b6b9ff4c22a401ece5f French
    Russian needs too many keys. через три слоя пота является Гробельник мысли напрасны!
    For most people coding input <>[ ]{ } is not needed for natural language input, and non-English isn't needed for comments in coding. We are left with international users needing coding, and for them there are many options. Use language layer to reinstate buttons, switch layout back and forth with FN+select. Or compose everything:
    easykeyboardcompose2.png
    http://www.brianhetrick.com/kb/
    Full overview of dead-keys diacritics:
    | (vertical bar)                          1 ā ē ī ō ū Ā Ē Ī Ō Ū
    " (quotation mark)                    2 ő ű Ő Ű
    - (hyphen)                                3 đ ħ ŧ Đ Ħ Ŧ (+Y E L is ¥ € £) You can also use the standard AltGr+E for € and similar.
    ~ (tilde)                                    4 ã ĩ ő ñ ũ Ã Ĩ Ő Ñ Ũ
    ' (apostrophe)                          5 á ć é í ĺ ń ó ŕ ś ú ý ź Á Ć É Í Ĺ Ń Ó Ŕ Ś Ú Ý Ź
    ^ (circumflex)                           6 â ĉ ê ĝ ĥ î ĵ ô ŝ û Â Ĉ Ê Ĝ Ĥ Î Ĵ Ô Ŝ Û
    ` (grave accent)                       7 à è ì ò ù À È Ì Ò Ù
    * (asterisk)                               8 å ů Å Ů
    ( (left parenthesis)                   9 ă ğ ŭ Ă Ğ Ŭ
    \ (backslash, reverse solidus)  0 ą ę į ų Ą Ę Į Ų
    , (comma)                                [,;_] ç ģ ķ ļ ņ ŗ ş ţ Ç Ģ Ķ Ļ Ņ Ŗ Ş Ţ
    < (less than sign)                    [<>] č ď ě ǐ ľ ň ř š ť ž Č Ď Ě Ǐ Ľ Ň Ř Š Ť Ž
    . (period)                                  [.:/] ċ ė ı ġ ż Ċ Ė Ġ İ Ż
    : (colon)                                   [.:/] or [ [{ ] ä ë ï ö ü ÿ Ä Ë Ï Ö Ü Ÿ
    / (slash, solidus)                      [.:/] or [ }] ] ł ø Ł Ø

    If you are Spanish, type Shift+AltGr+ [1!1] to get ¡ Shift+altGr+[0)/] to get ¿
    Efficiency:
    [​IMG]
    Add comma in sentence       [ , ; _ ] → [ space ]
    New sentence                       [  . : / ] → [ space ] + ↑ [   ⇧   ]
    New sentence, with lineshift  [ . : /  ] → [     ↵    ] + ↑ [   ⇧   ]
    See here for a graphical analysis of why this arrangement is more effective.
     
    Immediate access to all brackets <> [] {} with one click via shift.
    Immediate access to ' ? and - via AltGr  (note how AltGr+'+t allows ease of writing wouldn't don't and similar).
    Numberrow:
    US shift+row, balanced with one dead-key symbol per key to make it like US international.
    Shoulders:
    [​IMG] Ctrl Alt Shift and AltGr
    Secondarily mediakeys  with FN+

    If you hold Fn and press a shoulder, it is a global mediabutton.
    When the lid is closed, you can press mediabuttons directly.
    Pause/play is on the next track side because of where the headphones stick out if its in a pocket.  An additional idea is that you can answer voip/phonecalls with them. Put on hold, or "hang up" without answering.
    Columnkeys:
    [​IMG] Ctrl Alt and AltGr. Easy to use, also when the pyra is on a table.
    Gamepad-buttons:
    [​IMG]^ PageUp v PageDn < Home > End | Insert x Delete.

    [​IMG] Start and Select in correct arrangement. Start is compose, and select is language layer.
    D-pad:
    dpad.png Arrowkeys like on a regular keyboard. Can be used to navigate text or elements or when playing games.
    Mouse input nubs: Left nub; movement and left mouse-click. Right nub right mouse-click.

    Any configuration available in the input config tool.
    Testing is needed to see how well this works. Albeit less intuitive, the pandora method of using rightnub left to leftclick and right to rightclick works, up and down can still be used for scrolling.
    Fn and F-row:
    FN+numbers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 and the two keys to the right of P for F1 F2 F3 F4 F5 F6 F7 F8 F9 F10 F11 F12
     
    Switch language Fn+L
    Caps Lock          Fn+shift
    Powertoggles      Fn+power
    Brigthness down Fn+↓
    Brightness up      Fn+↑
     
    easykeyboardfkeys.png
     

    To illustrate the difference between the two ways to do F-keys:
     
    Fn doing Fn, AltGr doing AltGr:
    Any single F-key: 2 keypad presses.
    Any F-key combo: at most 2 keypad presses with the use of shoulders.
    Drawbacks:
    Typing F-keys less efficient if you use shoulders to do so.
    You have to employ KEY_LEFTMETA and KEY_RIGHTMETA for shoulders since R_alt is already used.

     Fn on shoulders doing both Fn and AltGr:
    Any single F-key: 1 keypad presses with the use of shoulders
    Any F-key combo: at most 1 keypad presses with the use of shoulders.
    Drawbacks:
    Accidental ESC, Alt+F4 or Ctrl+Alt+F* 
    AltGr functionality broken.
    Cant recognise AltGr, familiarity for casual users out the window. Thirdlevelshift does not belong on Fn, nor does a lot of other things, on every level.
    Fn+dpad and Fn+buttoncluster dosnt work (because that would also trigger these functions when playing games that use shoulders)
    Mediabuttons doesnt work (because one of them is Fn+Fn)
    Less input flexibility and possibility (Fn is used already for all keys, and is stated, so you cant AZERTY without loss, and you cant re-arrange)
     
     
    The full disclosure:

    • F-key combos, (requiring 3 keypad presses) work on the assumption that people who need to type F-key combos, can also use shoulders. With alt Ctrl shift and AltGr on shoulders, any F-combo is at most 2 keypad presses, which is managable. Luckily this also means its not accidental, like Ctrl+alt+F* (changes TTY.)
    • No super key. There is a Fn key that can be used for anything besides what is taken by F-keys. There are no super shortcuts in Xfce because of chromebooks or older keyboards etc.
    • F-keys are not on shoulderpress. They arent labeled. Much like a chromebook.
    • There is no dedicated ' or -  while it would make it more typing-english friendly, its buttons that are in other places on a english keyboard. As a gesture, this is now on AltGr+numberrow combo, so it can be typed with one press with one hand, not as good, but close.
    • There is no Caps-lock key, because its a waste of a key. Steve Jobs at NeXT agrees.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     
    Resources:
    http://www.xfree86.org/current/xlib.pdf#page=272&zoom=250,-3,481
    https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/X_KeyBoard_extension
    https://github.com/torvalds/linux/blob/master/include/uapi/linux/input.h#L315

    typewriter.png

    columnkeys.png

    startselect.png

    easykeyboardefficiency.png

    thebuttoncluster.png

    pyrakeyboard.png

    shoulders.png
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 8, 2016
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  2. Saber

    Saber Advanced Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2012
    Messages:
    1,303
    Moved back to old thread. Will wait on ED for what he wants to do.

    Do your best.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2014
  3. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Messages:
    5,387
    Location:
    Brussels, Belgium
    Here is my proposal:

    [​IMG]

    http://www.keyboard-...4fd356c47e1d3e9

    General features:

    • Standard US-QWERTY with number row and standard Shifted number symbols !@#$%^&*()
    • Comma (,), period (.) , apostrophe/quote ('/") and dash (-) are roughly in their standard positions, the other standard punctuation symbols (; : ` ? ) are nearby.
    • Pandora's Fn is replaced with the "Pyra" modifier, which is available on a shoulder button and as a central key.
    • The additional symbols are grouped in clusters: F-keys on the QWER row (all 12 of them nicely in a row), all kinds of brackets and delimiters on the ASDF row, the rest on the ZXC row
    • Dedicated Tab, Del, apostrophe, grave, +, -, Esc, Super, Brightness and Connectivity keys.
    • Added PrintScreen, ScrollLock, Pause/Break keys (Pyra+ZXC)
    • Compared to Pandora, removed § (rarely used except maybe by lawyers, use Compose S O if you need it) and ´ (forward quote, or is it supposed to be acute? never used anyway), and replaced € £ ¥ with one universal currency symbol on Pyra+B, that corresponds to the currency symbol of the user locale by default.
    • Super+[shoulder buttons] are media keys, when the lid is closed they are the default (configurable of course)
    • Only one or two letter/symbol/icon labels per key, so labels can be in a big, friendly, easy to read font.
    Support for international characters / layouts:

    • Dead key diacritics are easy: Pyra+Symbol followed by a letter gives an accented letter. E.g. Pyra+" U gives Ü, Pyra+' E gives É, and so on.
    • The compose key is at Pyra+Enter by default. Most people will not need it since nearly everything is covered by the more efficient dead key diacritics. But if you want, you can use the Compose method as well. Since Shift and Pyra are also on shoulder buttons, you can use the keyboard Shift or keyboard Pyra for Compose if you want.
    • There are keys to the right of P and L available for remapping for those who want to do that. For example, a German keyboard has Ü Ö Ä where Tab Backtick Apostrophe are.
    Potential objections / FAQ:
     
    "The color of the Pyra-labels hurts my eyes. Can't it be something less bright?"
    The color is supposed to be fire red, referring to Pyra (which means "flame-colored hair", so the daughter of Pandora supposedly had red hair).
    It should be a relatively bright color to make sure that all the labels are easily readable, especially the labels of those special symbols that you rarely need.
    Yes, it distracts and maybe intimidates to have clearly visible Pyra-labels, but in the long run, these are the most useful labels -- you'll know the primary meaning of the keys by heart after a while, since you'll need those the most. If you'll have to peek at the labels, it will be mostly to find the special stuff.
     
    "Why the Greek letters (Π Δ Ω χ) on the action buttons? Why not be normal and use ABXY like everyone else?"
    This is an aspect of my proposal that can of course easily be changed back to ABXY if needed. But the idea is that all keys should have an unambiguous label so it is easy to refer to them in a non-confusing way. If we use ABXY, then there are two different buttons with those labels: the action buttons, and the keyboard keys. Dedicated game consoles like Nintendo or XBox do not have this problem because they don't have a keyboard. We do have a keyboard though.
    Greek letters (Delta, Pi, Omega, Chi, but you can call them Greek {Up,Left,Right,Down} or whatever you want) refer to the Greek origins of the name Pyra. Arguably, Greek letters are better known (in the Western world) than other non-Latin alphabets; they are widely used in mathematics and science and can be rendered by nearly all fonts. This particular set of Greek letters resembles the Playstation button layout a bit, which could be a nice bonus for PSX and PSP emulation. They are also labeled with icons for Home/End ⇤ ⇥ and for Page Up/Down⇞ ⇟.
     
    "Why no AltGr?"
    There is no AltGr key, but since there are two Alt keys, you can obviously use one of them as AltGr if you need an extra modifier for an extra layer of symbols, just like on a normal keyboard. All of the AltGr-combinations are free to be mapped to whatever you want, since the default layout does not use AltGr. This means you can also map AltGr+[number row] or AltGr+[F-keys] if you want to.
    It was a conscious decision to use just one extra modifier (Pyra) for all the missing keys and symbols. That way, the total number of modifiers is four (Shift, Ctrl, Alt, Pyra), which is a perfect match for the number of shoulder buttons. More modifiers can be defined: e.g. Super (aka Windows logo key) is available, so you can use it for shortcuts. You could use START or R2 as AltGr. You could even redefine SELECT, L1, L2, Shift or Pyra to become a totally new modifier (say, Hyper). But whatever you do, there are only four shoulder buttons so only four modifiers will be efficient to use for combinations.
     
    "Why + and - on the two new action buttons?"
    The + and - keys are useful in common shortcuts like Ctrl +/- which is often used for zooming in and out (e.g. in browsers, office applications) or Ctrl Alt +/- which can be used to set the X11 screen resolution. Remember: the screen is small, so easy zooming in and out is useful.
    Also, both for coding and natural language input, "-" is frequently needed, so it deserves a dedicated key. "+" is perhaps also relatively important, e.g. considering the size that button has on a numeric keypad.
     
    "Dead key diacritics are too complicated."
    Then just don't use them. You can also use the Compose method, which is arguably easier and certainly more general, but it comes at the price of needing 3 thumb presses per character. Or you can remap the keyboard to get dedicated keys for the characters you need. Unfortunately there are too many language-specific characters to give all of them a place on the keymat. We could for example add Ü Ö Ä ß (as Pyra-keys) to make the Germans happy, but that would make the layout German-centric and it would not be very useful: for non-Germans it would not help at all, and for Germans, it's still less convenient than having Ü, Ö, Ä in their normal positions (to the right of P and L) so they can type on a "real" German keyboard layout.

    Dead key diacritics are a good compromise: they are more efficient than using Compose (two thumb presses instead of three), and they are universal enough to cover the needs of all these languages: Afrikaans, Albanian, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Esperanto, Estonian, Faeroese, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greenlandic, Hungarian, Icelandic, Irish, Italian, Lappish, Latvian, Lithuanian, Maltese, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovene, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish.
     
     

    This was the original contents of this post, kept for completeness:

    [​IMG]
     
    Minor update with SysRq at Alt+POWER: http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/8ffc6d83b0a6d4a1f345e609e980beb7
    (previous version: http://www.keyboard-...871f5ab542a77fd)
     
     
    General features:

    • Standard US-QWERTY keyboard, number row with standard shifted symbols !@#$%^&*()
    • Comma (, <), period (. >) , slash (/ ?) and dash (-) are roughly in their standard positions, the other standard punctuation symbols (; : \ " ' ) have no dedicated keys but they're in locations that make some kind of sense
    • New dedicated keys compared to Pandora keyboard: Tab (↹, bottom left), Delete (below backspace), Slash (/, to the right of L), Plus and Minus (+ -, at the new action buttons), Esc (very top left), Menu, Brightness, and Connectivity (wifi/3G/BT/hdmi)
    • The Brightness button can be used to set the brightness of the screen and the keyboard backlight. Suggested behavior: pressing the button toggles the screen backlight between "low", "medium" and "high", where each of those three levels can be configured in software. Pressing the button with Meta toggles the keyboard backlight between "on" and "off". Holding the button while using the dpad allows more fine grained control.
    • The Connectivity button can be used to toggle wifi (normal press), 3G (with Shift), hdmi (with Meta) and bluetooth (with Shift+Meta).
    • Fn is replaced by "Meta", which gives access to the missing keys but is implemented as a software modifier key so it can be remapped etc.
    • Shoulder buttons are L1=Right Shift, R1=Right Ctrl like on the Pandora, plus L2=Right Meta, R2=Right Alt
    • START is Left Alt, SELECT is Left Ctrl like on the Pandora, PYRA is (Left, but there is no Right) Super, the keyboard Shift and Meta keys are Left Shift and Left Meta and they are both sticky by default (meaning if you want to type a capital P, you can press Shift, release it, and then press P)
    • Meta+number row gives most of the missing symbols from a full-size keyboard: ~ " ` ' = _ { } [ ]
    • Meta+QWERTY row gives F1 to F12 (all nicely in a row)
    • 5 media keys (Meta+ASDFG, for Previous, Play/Pause, Next, Mute, Stop)
    • PrintScreen, ScrollLock and Pause/Break (Meta+JKL)
    Support for international characters / layouts:

    • All non-language specific symbols from US-QWERTY and most European layouts are available in one thumb press (with or without L1 or L2 held), including even relatively obscure ones like ° § £ € ² ³ µ
    • All letters from Latin-alphabet languages are available in at most two thumb presses using dead key diacritics: the '(not so) hidden meaning' of the number row is ~ [tilde] " [umlaut] ` [grave] ' [acute] = [double_acute] ^ [circumflex] & [ligature] * [ring] ( [breve] ) [inverse breve]. To get the dead key diacritic, you press Meta+Shift+[symbol] (you can use L1+L2 for this, let's abbreviate L1+L2 to DL for DoubleLeft). So for example ü = DL+" U, ä = DL+" A, é = DL+' E, è = DL+` E, ê = DL+^ E, ē = DL+| E, ĕ = DL+( E, and so on. There's also Æ = L+& A, Œ = L+& O, ß = L+& S, and more like those. If you don't need diacritics, you can of course be blissfully ignorant about this feature :)
    • The compose key is at Meta+Esc by default. Most people will not need it since nearly everything is covered by the more efficient dead key diacritics. But if you want, you can use the Compose method as well. Since Shift and Meta are also on shoulder buttons, you can use the keyboard Shift or keyboard Meta for Compose if you want.
    • There are keys to the right of P and L available for remapping for those who want to do that. For example, a German keyboard has Ü Ö Ä where Del Slash Shift are. If you can live without Del, and with only the shoulder button Shift (which is the most efficient Shift anyway), then you just have to move Slash to Meta+Slash to make room for Ö.
    Potential objections / FAQ:
     
    "The amount of symbols on the key labels is too intimidating"
    If this is really an issue, the symbols on ASD-L and ZXC-M are optional and could be removed to make it look more elegant/friendly. The only essential Meta-symbols are the ones on the number row and at the dedicated punctuation keys on the bottom right.
     
    "The color of the Meta-labels hurts my eyes. Can't it be something less bright?"
    The color is supposed to be fire red, referring to Pyra (which means "flame-colored hair", so the daughter of Pandora supposedly had red hair).
    It should be a relatively bright color to make sure that all the labels are easily readable, especially the labels of those special symbols that you rarely need.
    Yes, it distracts and intimidates to have clearly visible Meta-labels, but in the long run, these are the most useful labels -- you'll know the primary meaning of the keys by heart after a while, since you'll need those the most. If you'll have to peek at the labels, it will be mostly to find the special stuff.
     
    "Why the Greek letters (Π Δ Ω χ) on the action buttons? Why not be normal and use ABXY like everyone else?"
    This is an aspect of my proposal that can of course easily be changed back to ABXY if needed. But the idea is that all keys should have an unambiguous label so it is easy to refer to them in a non-confusing way. If we use ABXY, then there are two different buttons with those labels: the action buttons, and the keyboard keys. Dedicated game consoles like Nintendo or XBox do not have this problem because they don't have a keyboard. We do have a keyboard though.
    Greek letters (Delta, Pi, Omega, Chi, but you can call them Greek {Up,Left,Right,Down} or whatever you want) refer to the Greek origins of the name Pyra. Arguably, Greek letters are better known (in the Western world) than other non-Latin alphabets; they are widely used in mathematics and science and can be rendered by nearly all fonts. This particular set of Greek letters resembles the Playstation button layout a bit, which could be a nice bonus for PSX and PSP emulation. They are also labeled with icons for Home/End ⇤ ⇥ and for Page Up/Down⇞ ⇟.
     
    "Why no AltGr?"
    There is no AltGr key, but since there are two Alt keys, you can obviously use one of them as AltGr if you need an extra modifier for an extra layer of symbols, just like on a normal keyboard. All of the AltGr-combinations are free to be mapped to whatever you want, since the default layout does not use AltGr. This means you can also map AltGr+[number row] or AltGr+[F-keys] if you want to.
    It was a conscious decision to use just one extra modifier (Meta) for all the missing keys and symbols. That way, the total number of modifiers is four (Shift, Ctrl, Alt, Meta), which is a perfect match for the number of shoulder buttons. More modifiers can be defined: e.g. the Pyra button is Super (aka Windows logo key), so you can use it for shortcuts, although by default it will probably just be used to access the main menu. You could use START or R2 as AltGr. You could even redefine SELECT, L1, L2, Shift or Meta to become a totally new modifier (say, Hyper). But whatever you do, there are only four shoulder buttons so only four modifiers will be efficient to use for combinations.
    In comradekingu's layout proposal, there is an AltGr modifier on R2 and a regular Alt on L2. That means he does not have room for Meta on the shoulder buttons, so a combination like Alt-F4 requires two thumb presses (Pyrabutton followed by L2+R). In my layout proposal, all normal combinations are just one thumb press: e.g. Alt-F4 is L2+R2+R, Ctrl-Alt-Delete is R1+R2+Del, Ctrl-Alt-Shift-F5 is [all shoulder buttons]+T, and so on.
     
    "Why + and - on the two new action buttons?"
    The + and - keys are useful in common shortcuts like Ctrl +/- which is often used for zooming in and out (e.g. in browsers, office applications) or Ctrl Alt +/- which can be used to set the X11 screen resolution. Remember: the screen is small, so easy zooming in and out is useful.
    Also, both for coding and natural language input, "-" is frequently needed, so it deserves a dedicated key. "+" is perhaps also relatively important, e.g. considering the size that button has on a numeric keypad.
     
    "Dead key diacritics are too complicated."
    Then just don't use them. You can also use the Compose method, which is arguably easier and certainly more general, but it comes at the price of needing 3 thumb presses per character. Or you can remap the keyboard to get dedicated keys for the characters you need. Unfortunately there are too many language-specific characters to give all of them a place on the keymat. We could for example add Ü Ö Ä ß (as Meta-keys) to make the Germans happy, but that would make the layout German-centric and it would not be very useful: for non-Germans it would not help at all, and for Germans, it's still less convenient than swapping Y and Z, replacing Del by Ü, Slash by Ö, Shift by Ä and putting ß somewhere (say, Meta+H or at 0), so they can type on a "real" German keyboard layout.
    Dead key diacritics are a good compromise: they are more efficient than using Compose (two thumb presses instead of three), and they are universal enough to cover the needs of all these languages: Afrikaans, Albanian, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Esperanto, Estonian, Faeroese, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greenlandic, Hungarian, Icelandic, Irish, Italian, Lappish, Latvian, Lithuanian, Maltese, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovene, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish.
     
    "Media keys are stupid."
    Yes, maybe. I imagine they can be useful though, when you're listening to music while doing something else full-screen. If you have a big screen, you can sacrifice some screen area to keep a music player in view all the time, but that's not really an option on a handheld.
     
    "What is the difference between the Pyra button and the Menu button?"
    The Pyra button is Super, also known as the Windows key or more neutrally, the Logo key. It's the button that is typically between Ctrl and Alt on normal keyboards:
     
    [​IMG]
    Pressing it typically causes the main menu to appear (hence the confusion). It can be used as a modifier (typically for shortcuts related to the window manager). It can be compared to the Command key () on Apple keyboards.
    The Menu button is the Menu key, which is typically located between the right Windows key and the right Ctrl key on a normal keyboard:
    [​IMG]
    What it does is to launch a context menu, just like what clicking right would do. It is useful if you're using the keyboard to use a GUI, but you still need access to the context menu. Without that button, you have to move the mouse to where your text cursor is (which could be far away from where the mouse cursor happens to be) and do a right click. With this button, you can avoid that, and immediately get a context menu on the location of the text cursor.
    At least that is the default behavior of those keys. Of course nothing stops Pyra-specific games and applications to use them for other things. E.g. I could imagine a game using the Menu button for some in-game menu.

    Edit (16 Aug 2014):

    Here is a cleaner variant of the above proposal: http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/605cb54bd1e845ca132f871f3fd8623c

    Some explanations related to it are here: http://boards.openpandora.org/topic/16822-explaining-keyboard-layout-proposals/page-5#entry351619/URL]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2016
  4. TrashyMG

    TrashyMG Sarcasm Dispenser Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    Messages:
    10,474
    Only question I have about _wb_'s layout is if the keys on the power button row can be mapped or not.. These may be wired to directly control the hardware and may not be able to be mapped as keyboard buttons. Someone may have to clear that detail up, unless I missed it somewhere.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2014
  5. Mr_Loon

    Mr_Loon Can't Remember

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2010
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    One thing I'd like to see on the default layout of the Pyra is left & right mouse click assigned to buttons rather than the analog nubs. My personal preference would be to use the most accessible shoulder buttons but any hardware buttons would be preferable to using the nubs for me.

    Another addition that would be useful is a dedicated key to bring up a 'software keyboard' with a user defined selection of required keys, these could be things like language/country specific accented characters/currency symbols etc.
     
  6. sebt3

    sebt3 homebrew player (P. & C.)

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    My opinions on this :

    • having [ins] as meta+[<-] wont make copy/pasting easy (the standard Unix copy/paste is ctrl+ins /shift+ins) I would have prefered having ins and del in place of + and -, but that's just me. probably then using - as the current [del] key and shift+- to get that + would better suit me
    • Dead keys using L1+L2 sound sub-optimal to me especially since I'm unsure that will be easy to do...
    • What the difference between Menu and pyra button ?
    • ESC key sound hard to reach when needed, while could be pressed accidentally while playing if you've large thumbs that will probably depend on the nub though
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2014
  7. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    I always assumed they can be mapped. In original layout sketches from ED himself, he put F1-F4 over there if I recall correctly (presumably because the first F-keys are the most frequently needed).

    There are ways to adapt my proposal if those keys are not available: e.g. put Esc on Meta+A and shift the media keys one to the right and drop the Menu key.

    It would surprise me though if keys would be directly wired to hardware instead of going through software first.

    You do know that the nubs will be clickable this time? It makes most sense to use the nub buttons for mouse clicks. I'm just not sure if left nub click should correspond to left mouse click: while that is the most intuitive thing to do, it may be less practical for dragging. So I think right nub click = left mouse click makes most sense.

    The software keyboard idea is of course mostly a matter of software. I don't think we need a dedicated key for that: some shortcut combination suffices by default (e.g. Meta+Menu), and if you frequently need it, you can configure the shortcut to something else, even a single key (e.g. keyboard Meta)
     
  8. TrashyMG

    TrashyMG Sarcasm Dispenser Staff Member

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    Ah right, that slipped my mind.
     
  9. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    For copy/paste you can also use Ctrl-C Ctrl-V nearly everywhere. But Ctrl+Ins / Shift+Ins is not that hard to do: R1+L2+backspace, L1+L2+backspace.

    L1+L2 should be easy to do:

    I'll explain the difference between Menu and Super in the FAQ of my post.

    I don't think accidental Esc presses are likely. I don't press 3 or 4 accidentally on the Pandora while using the dpad or nub.

    Hard to reach: not really. If it's like the Pandora, the only ones that are really hard to reach are the power button and START.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2014
  10. sebt3

    sebt3 homebrew player (P. & C.)

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    badly wrong here. It's default for GTK and QT sure. but that's stop there. ctrl+ins shift+ins is an X11 feature...
    Are you realy serious here ? R1+L2 easy ?
     
  11. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    GTK and Qt cover quite a lot, and in other applications (e.g. a terminal emulator, where obviously Ctrl-C is needed for SIGINT), you can often use Ctrl-Shift-C/V instead. Maybe "nearly everywhere" was an exaggeration, but not by much.

    R1+L2 is indeed probably harder to do than a shoulder combo on the same side or on the same trigger pair. Still should be doable. You could also do sticky-Meta followed by R1+backspace.

    So OK, that particular "copy" shortcut is a bit hard. The "paste" is easy to do though (L1+L2+Backspace, or sticky-Meta sticky-Shift backspace), and "cut" (Shift+Delete) too.

    I don't think having a slightly easier "copy" shortcut (besides the probably more frequently used Ctrl-C) is enough reason to justify a dedicated Insert key.

    I carefully considered my assignment of modifiers to shoulder buttons. These are the six two-modifier combos:

    • Shift+Meta (L1+L2, BothL, easy to do)
    • Ctrl+Alt (R1+R2, BothR, easy to do)
    • Ctrl+Shift (L1+R1, Both1, easy to do)
    • Alt+Meta (L2+R2, Both2, easy to do)
    • Ctrl+Meta (L2+R1, hard to do)
    • Shift+Alt (L1+R2, hard to do)
    I think Ctrl-Alt and Ctrl-Shift are more frequently used in shortcuts than Shift+Alt (probably because Shift+Alt is the least comfortable of those three on a regular keyboard). The combinations involving Meta are important mostly because of the F-keys: I think Shift+[F-key] and Alt+[F-key] are more frequently used than Ctrl+[F-key] (I could be wrong though).
     
  12. levi

    levi Still fresh, damnit!

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    Another keyboard thread? Was that really necessary?


    Anyway, a problem with having left click and left move on the left nub is how then do you do a left-click drag? These buttons can only be clicked in the central position, I believe.


    FWIW, right click drag is also useful in RISC OS, if we still support that.
     
  13. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    The idea is that this thread consolidates the previous thread, and to make sure that people don't have to wade through 15 pages of discussions just to understand the current 'state-of-the-art' in terms of proposals. Once Saber is ready with his proposal(s), comradekingu will also add a poll to this thread so we can get an indication of what has the most support.

    In my opinion, the poll should have one question per proposal, with the answers "I like it", "I can live with it" and "I don't like it", perhaps with augmented with an indication of your background (skills: novice/advanced, language: English/other Latin/non-Latin) so we get an indication of demographic differences.

    The poll should also have some general questions to get an idea of the preferences regarding specific aspects or design decisions: single-width or double-width space bar? QWERTY centered or on the left? AltGr or no AltGr? What to put on the extra action buttons: Ins/Del, +/-, something else?
     
  14. Grench

    Grench Forum Addict!

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    Just a quick meta-level note.

    All of these layouts assume that the space bar is going to be broken into two buttons.  To my knowledge ED has said that is theoretically possible, but has not committed to doing so.  That will require changes to the case and keymat specs.

    /***************************/

    On layouts - get rid of the Greek characters on the game pad and we'll talk.  We've been through that, it's been resolved by debate and votes to NOT have obscure symbols on the game pad.  I will actively campaign against any layout that continues the mistake of incorporating Greek or other non-Latin characters.

    /***************************/

    Copy & Paste

    I'm old school IBM Common User Access standards based.  I much prefer Ctrl-Ins, Shift-Ins.  

    Ctrl-c and Ctrl-v was a Microsoft hijack of an Apple setup and bastardized the control-alphabet sequences commonly used in command line DOS.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cut,_copy,_and_paste

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_character

    Ctrl-c, even after all this time, is ingrained in my mind as break-program-stop-interrupt.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control-C

    So, please - lets make sure that Ctrl-Ins and Shift-Ins can be done without requiring the agility and finger size of a raccoon?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2014
  15. comradekingu

    comradekingu Glowing ember

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    First the changes have to make sense, then they are made. Thats what we are trying to do here.  Changing the case to have doublespace is easier than vice versa. The keymat already consists of 1-key wide buttons in a matrix. Reproducing a keymat will be easier if it is all single-width. Besides, single-width makes sense alone, for reasons stemming from it not being a centered space, which is why it is a bar-key on standard desktop layout. 1-key on the right hand side is just as usable as 2, and one 2-key means one less usable key in a very central position. People seemed to have no issue adjusting to a space that wasnt wide on T9.

    ED has specifically said this.

    Before change was initiated, as a result of me catching on to why it didnt.

    He said i should make a vote to see if people would be interested, which i have, and people are interested.

    I added Ins on one of the ABXY+2 keys. I use insert to paste in virtual terminals for reasons you mentioned.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 8, 2016
  16. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    No tricky changes though. The added symmetry makes it perhaps even easier to make the keymat.

    There are not a lot of good reasons to have a two-key space bar. Space cannot be in the middle like on a regular keyboard (unless we ruin the ZXC row), so it's a right-thumb key anyway. The only reason to have a two-key space are æsthetical considerations about the expected shape for a space key.

    Yes, ABXY marginally won some vote in the past. In other votes Greek was the most popular. None of the proposals have a clear majority of people who approve. It seems to be something people have polarized opinions about.
    For the purposes of this thread, just ignore the labels on those action buttons. It is an orthogonal issue. The important thing is that they're Home/End/PgUp/PgDn.

     You can do Shift-Ins and Ctrl-Ins exactly the same way as on the Pandora, except that Backspace is in a slightly better spot. Bottom right key, then hold L1 or R1 while pressing top right key.

    There are many ways to do copy/paste. I usually just select text to copy and use middle click to paste. Or Ctrl-C, Ctrl-V. Or Ctrl-Shift-C, Ctrl-Shift-V. Or select with F3, copy with F5, move with F6 (mc editor). Or Ctrl-F, Shift-F5 to copy between different files (mc editor). Or Ctrl-Ins, Shift-Ins.

    Do you really want a dedicated Ins key just to make Ctrl-Ins slightly easier? At the cost of losing a dedicated key for - ?
     
  17. Saber

    Saber Advanced Member

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    Migrated my layout to the second post in this thread.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 8, 2016
  18. Silent-Hunter

    Silent-Hunter Hardcore Member

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    I like both layouts, although comeradekingu's could use more FN accessed stuff, like Print Screen, SysRq, Pause/Break, etc.

    Actually, neither have SysRq, and I like the Magic SysRq key function the Linux kernel has.
     
    comradekingu likes this.
  19. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    SysRq and PrintScreen are the same key on many keyboards. I didn't add the SysRq label, because there is no room and because I assume that PrintScreen is more widely used/known. But Alt+Meta+J could be Magic SysRq.

    What is the usual spot? Meta+Tab is not exactly the usual spot. Ignoring the Meta, the usual keyboard spot for the Esc key is on the "top left". Arguably, my location for Esc is just as "top left" as yours.

    I think that if potential confusion is a criterion, I and II are worse than + and -. It's easy to confuse I with the letter I (or l for that matter, or even |), because it actually is the letter I. As a pair, when you pronounce them one and two, or think of them as one and two, they can be confused with 1 and 2. Additionally, how are you supposed to know that I and II mean Insert and Delete? I think it is less confusing to have a key whose label matches with what happens when you press it.

    What red color of the lid emblem? There's an RGB led in the lid, which you can make any color you want. It could be the same color as the Meta color, or a contrasting color, or whatever you want.

    Assuming the case is in a neutral color like black or grey/silver, the only color you'll always see is  the color of the meta labels. It makes sense to use a color that matches the Pyra theme then, not a color that contrasts well with the Pyra theme color.

    [citation needed].  I suspect a centered layout is actually less balanced than one that has Q on the left. I suspect that a centered layout is quite heavily right-biased. Space, Enter and Meta are at the right, and your letter keys are also slightly shifted to the right.

    That's right. Slightly shifted to the right. One half key to be precise.

    When finger-typing on a real keyboard, you put your index fingers at F and J, so the center is supposedly between G and H. In a so-called "centered" layout, the center is exactly at G (which means it is one half key to the right of really centered), while in my and comradekingu's layout, the center is exactly at H (which means it is one half key to the left of really centered).

    I claim that this half-key bias to the left in my layout compensates for the single-sided space key on the right.
     
  20. Saber

    Saber Advanced Member

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    I take it you don't like my layout as much as yours then?

    I don't think it wise to use hardware keys for normal keyboard keys. In my opinion, they are not reserved for regular keys like Escape or Menu because we needed to find places for them. I also do not like that you have all four of the hardware toggles grouped on only one key. :blink:

    Also, I don't know why you're comparing a full size keyboard with a handheld keyboard. Yes, if we are talking about where you're index fingers set down, both a Pyra centered and off-centered layout are not exactly comparable to a full computer keyboard but anyone can see that the letter Q is farther to the left to the edge in your layout than in mine, correct? If one were to hold a Pyra in their hands and hover their thumbs until they touch over the midpoint of the handheld, they would have an equal amount of twelve total keys if counting from that center spot to the left or to the right. Now if said person were to note the keys being passed over, for your layout's Q-P row from the midpoint to the left then to right, it would go something like this:

    Q, W, E, R, T, Y  <<<<< middle >>>>> U,I,O,P, Delete, Enter

    in your uncentered layout.

    For my "centered" layout it would look like this:

    Tab, Q, W, E, R, T <<<<< middle >>>>> Y, U, I, O, P, Enter

    I like the balanced one myself and my thumbs probably do to. :)

    Furthermore, maybe it's the wording people are hung up on when they cry foul, so let's call it " the reduce thumb fatigue by evenly distributing the same number of letters from the center of the keyboard to either side layout" rather than centered layout. :p

    About what the face buttons should be called. 

    We could make the same argument for the ABXY butttons not being labeled PU, PD, Ho, En for Page UP/Down, Home, or End, but I think people in general will remember (I) and (II) are Insert and Delete without much effort: pic.

    For the coloring, it wouldn't shock me if ED went with a dark reddish tone for the case as standard. Whatever color he chooses, I always liked the blue color they decided on for the Pandora's Fn keys and punctuation.

    For SysRq, as _wb_ has stated, Magic SysRq is done by holding Alt with Ctrl while pressing the Meta key once, then pressing and holding the Print Screen key with one of the numbers or letters/vowels on the keyboard. Some finger gymnastics involved, yes, but the user could always remap the (I) button to Print Screen and move Insert under Meta + Backspace.

    For Comradekingu's layout, left click and right click for the mouse center buttons should be switched because the left nub is usually used for mouse movement while the right is normally for mouse buttons(up for Double Left Click, down for Middle Click, left for Left Click, and right for Right Click). I kind of like the purple color you've used. It's very pretty. We could even go with a silkier tone.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2014

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