OK! I posted earlier today about the layout I was working on, but then saw some really cool ideas and went back to the drawing board. Mostly I’m concerned with the thumb buttons, but am also concerned the placement of a few other things. Anyway, my layout.
I’m on a mac and got used to my mac special keys on the left. I never use the command/etc on the right side, and instead of learning too much new stuff at once, I moved all those keys to the left thumb. Ctrl, Otion, Command, Shift.
The right thumb has some more interesting stuff happening. Shift, Tab, Space, = in regular mode. Shift, Bksp, Enter, - in function mode.
In programming I do a ton of “=” and “-” and “_”, but the standard layout kind of banishes those keys to an odd place. Moving them to the thumb might be too much, but we’ll see.
I moved the arrow keys so they have the inverted T in the home row, which means the curly bracket gets bumped to the left. I have no desire to relearn arrows. I saw that one row layout on some 60% mech keyboards, and apparently popular with vim? Just too many years to switch now.
The tab key gets mapped to backtick in function. This seems like an odd choice, but on a mac, atl-tab switches between windows, but alt-backtick switches between windows of the same process (toggling between Chrome windows, for example). This kind of throws off mouse warp, but I still have a lot of mouse thinking to do anyway.
The only other mod currently is pgdn turns into Shift in function. This makes navigating and selecting text much easier. In mac, command and option let you make line and word boundary cursor movements. Since the left thumb is busy and you’re already holding down fn, using the pinky to hold down “shift” to toggle selecting text is easy to understand (for me).
Still trying it out. Already thinking Tab isn’t good there because I keep hitting it by mistake, but really prefer moving bksp to the function layer because I’d be hitting that by mistake all the time instead.
Also really need an alternate way to do parens. They’re pretty common. Have tried space cadet on me mech keyboard and removed it because I would hit that by accident more than on purpose.
Next up is figuring out how to physically place the keyboard. So far nothing has felt quite “right”, although there’s a lot to adjust to, obviously. I’m thinking it might be better to start flat and add the feet later, but trial and error.
I also switched to Colemak a few weeks ago so I’ve been seriously blowing up my productivity, but I’ve enjoyed the input method rabbit hole I’ve gone down.