Model 100 German QWERTZ keycap legends

We’re in the process of finalizing the add-on keycaps for the Model 100, but wanted to take a moment (or really a couple days) to let folks flag potential issues with our keycap legends.

These are the German QWERTZ legends as currently planned. The layout here is how the caps are positioned on the painting jigs. Most keys are where you’d expect them, but the thumb keys have been moved around to make the tooling easier to manage. (I’ve also included the QWERTY keycaps for reference.) There is no significance to the colors.

Is there anything that looks wrong to you?

What should we be putting on the key in the lower left corner? Are there other Fun-layer labels we should have on this keyset?

As a non-German speaker, I know that I don’t know the right answers here.

QWERTY:

QWERTZ:

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As far as I can tell from the image, the layout currently lacks two keys which are present on my standard QWERTZ keyboard.

One is the <>| key, usually located just next to left shift. You have already included the | character on the bottom right key, so maybe < and > would be an option for that key. The second key I can’t seem to find above is the accents ´ and `. I think for bare typing (not programming), the accents would be more important on the base layer.

Also, as a side note, the µ character on the M key does not seem to render properly in your QWERTZ image.

I just joined the community and have never seen a real-life Keyboardio, and just recently preordered a model 100. Keep that in mind when reading my ideas above :wink:

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You have a mixup with the semicolon and colon symbols, semicolon should be on comma and colon on period. :thinking:

If you put the µ on there, would you want to put the Euro sign on the E as well and maybe the @ sign on the Q? Though the @ sign is not on Q on a Mac, it is on L there. Not sure about the µ as well, it is not printed on apple keyboards. Confusion yay :smiley:

So, we have two keys missing as iridium said. I think for prose writers the accents may be more important, when writing French loan-words or so, for German they are not used. The angle brackets key might be of more use to the average user here, as it is used in programming and casual text like chatting, either for emojis or to indicate direction or math or less than / greater than notion. So I think the angle brackets key should be on the base layer.

While the average user should be able to switch muscle memory to that key being in the lower right instead of the lower left, might it be preferable to put in on PgDn instead? Then put PgDn on the function layer of PgUp? Or rather switch those up, as PgDn is probably more often used than PgUp. The key on the lower right could then be the Num block key.

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You’ve got an eagle’s eye.

I agree. But I also believe it to be more intuitive for the <>brackets to be in another layer rather than having to switch the layer for an áccènt. I think it is more consistent to prioritize letter manipulation (I mean accents and roofs and so on) on the base layer.

Nonetheless, the <>| key is important for programmers of any mother tongue.


As for the Windows-Mac conflicts: Smallest common denominator would probably be not to print any of them?

As for the @ etc signs: I would also suggest not printing them.

Regardung all the accents like ^’`: those are not used in German, but of course in french and other european languages. Ob my layout I also put them kn different locations on different iterations. I don’t think there is a “best” place to put them.

When it comes to < and > - i never found a good place for those, and i’d like to put ^ also in that category as i need all three of them for programming. On my Layout I put them to the Brakets-Layer.

But: I doubt, it is possible to ship a german version of the Firmware, or is it? Because if not, than the question is where are those keys in the default layout….

It is not possible, so, indeed, the keycaps are restricted to the default German QWERTZ mapping. Symbols can’t be mapped elsewhere, the only thing that can be done, is moving the entire key(cap).

Well, there are germanized words from those languages. Café, Crème brûlée, Rosé (wine), Chicorée, voilà, Régime, Béchamelsoße, légère, Charité, Déjà-vu, Dragée, and so on.
They are few, and I had to look them up, but they do exist. Here is a list of “German words of French origin”. Similar might be true for Spanish?

Also the accents are used for many other things besides language. For example ``` are used for code blocks in markdown. ^ is used as an exponential in some apps and programming languages. I’ve seen some weird ruby code containing ’ etc.

So it would be nice if they are at least in a somewhat familiar spot.

(I am from Germany with a Model 01 currently and Model 100 preordered, but I usually type on US keycaps with EurKey layout, so I don’t have any other input to give)

Yes, true. But not so often, that you need it ln the primary layer imho. But i am not an author :wink:

I am a programmer myself, i put all of those keys on my „Special“ layer so its easier to reach. I myself use Liniar-A keycaps so that i can put keys wherever i want without being vonfused by legends (and it looks cool :wink: )

There were some good comments on the proposed QWERTZ layout. I like the idea of adding the € on the E key, the @ on the Q key and the µ key on the M.

Another two keys that are missing:

  • the # key, with shift: '
  • the + key, with shift: *, with AltGr: ~

Obviously all those characters are also quite important. Arguably the “~” is as important as the accents ` ´ (which i consider important) to compose all those european characters ñ á è etc.

There is another change here compared to the standard german layout: The characters “[ { } ]” that can normally be reached using AltGr+7 8 9 and 0 are now one row lower (on the key U I O P) but their order has changed as well (now it is { } [ ] ) and i think this should be changed back to the standard order and also perhaps back to number row - what do the others think?

Personally i don’t use TAB much, i would rather press a combination of keys to get a TAB character and use its key for one of the missing keys. The same goes for the PgUp/PgDown keys. We already use modifiers to have the four arrow keys and those are way more important than PgUp + PgDown in my opinion. In particular having the “< > |” key left of “Y” is quite important for the german layout.
By the way, are those red arrow keys on the “fun” layer? If so please add PgUp, PgDn, Pos1, Ende too.

I don’t yet have a clue about that CMD key, what is it used for?

Here is the official german “T1” layout for reference:

And here is the layout of physical keycaps on the model 100:

Edit: I agree with Michael, get rid of the any key and give us one of the missing keys, like the accents ` ´.

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There are four keys missing from standard-keyboard QWERTZ:

  1. < > |
  2. + * ~
  3. # '
  4. ´ `

The < key sould go on the lower left corner, left of Y. That’s exactly its place on a standard QWERTZ keyboard. I’d put the + key on the lower right corner next to -. I think that makes it somewhat logical and + stays on the right hand. The # key can go on the key left of A, as no other obvious placement option is left. Of course, you have to sacrifice the Page Up and Page Down keys for this. But I think + * ~ # ' are more valuable than Page Up and Page Down. People who use the latter a lot will probably make their own navigation layer anyway. The accents key ´ ` can be ditched. You can really write French loan words in German without the accents. And even if you want to use the accents, you probably won’t be needing them very frequently. Maybe the accents are needed for some programming languages. But I would argue that any of the characters available from the keys 1., 2., and 3., namely < > | + * ~ # ' are probably more valuable for programming than ´ or `. I just realised that we still have the Any key. This could become the accents key to complete the QWERTZ layout.

For reference, this is the German standard QWERTZ layout:

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Quick summary of suggestions:

  • fix the “,” and “.” keys: “,” should have “;” and “.” should have “:”, not vice versa.
  • Put the " # ’ " key in the bottom right corner (you wrote left). We can’t put it to the right of the “ä” key so we put it one row lower.
  • Put the “< > |” key in the bottom left corner next to “y” instead of the PgDn key.
  • Replace the “any” key with the accent key (´ `).
  • move the “{ [ ] }” keys (reachable with AltGr) to their original locations on 7 8 9 0 not U I O P and fix their order to be the original order.
  • put the “+ * ~” key left to the “a” key instead of the PgUp key (we got rid of PgDn already) (there is no room to the right of the Ü key)
  • print “µ” on “m” and “€” on “e”, as on the original T1 layout (they are reachable with AltGr). “@” on q is controversial because of the Mac/PC difference.

Is there some way of voting on these?

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@Qwertz CMD key is the Windows keys, named Command on Mac or Super on Linux.

Tab is heavily used for autocompletion or gaming, so while it is redundant, as it is on the function layer on the leftmost column, I think having it in the default Model 100 layout spot is better.

Another possible radical change could be to move Esc to the Prog key, effectively freeing up the Esc key position - Vim users might disagree though :thinking:

A good point made by @Qwertz is, that the Brackets and Curly Braces [, ], {, } can be typed using AltGr on a German layout, so they don’t have to be on the function layer, effectively freeing up four spots on the function layer to put PgUp, PgDn, Home and End (Pos1, Ende), so we could use leftmost column lower two keys on the base layer for non-navigation keys instead.

What about the second left-Alt on the right hand side, is this needed on the butterfly key or should that key be the Menu key instead, as the default Model 100 layout uses, and thus have the Butterfly as legend. I don’t think a right hand Alt is needed, normal German keyboards get along without it :smiley: Any opinions on that? :thinking:

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@alfalfasprossen

What about the second left-Alt on the right hand side, is this needed on the butterfly key or should that key be the Menu key instead, as the default Model 100 layout uses, and thus have the Butterfly as legend. I don’t think a right hand Alt is needed, normal German keyboards get along without it :smiley: Any opinions on that? :thinking:

I’m not sure I understand what you’re saying here. Both the QWERTY layout of the Model 100 and the QWERTZ layout suggested by Jesse here only have one Alt key.

On the QWERTY map, Butterfly is mapped to Right Alt, and Left Alt is on the thumb arc. On QWERTZ, the two appear to be swapped. (AltGr is the same as Right Alt).

Come to think of it: @jesse is there a reason why these two are swapped on German QWERTZ? AFAIK the language mapping doesn’t swap the alt keys.

During my conversation with Jesse on Discord about that topic, he brought up that the qwertz keycaps will be shipped as an addition to and not replacement of the qwerty keycaps, which means the keycaps can be used to provide alternatives (e.g. for the thumb keys). The actual layout is then assembled by mixing keys from both keycap sets.

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I would swap the Alt and AltGr keys back to how they are on the qwerty layout (Alt on the thumb arc, AltGr where the butterfly key is, but with the AltGr label).

But since there is already an Alt thumb keycap in the qwerty set, you could label both keys with AltGr. This way users can pick their preference.

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The key labelled cmd acts as Command on Mac, Win on Windows and Super on Linux and is sometimes called the GUI key. Since the butterfly label is no longer in use in the qwertz draft and in order to prevent confusion by any OS specific label,

I suggest using the Butterfly as a label for that key.

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This is all fantastic feedback. I really appreciate it. (Keep it coming)