This idea is for those with standard keyboards, with a non-split spacebar.
(I was thinking about this because I was using my laptop lately, and miss having access to the extra shift key which is defined by the left-half of my split space-bar!)
This idea is designed for people that:
- are already using AltGr (e.g. for accented characters or a custom symbols layer)
- want a way to access Shift using only thumb keys.
So let's cut to the chase. The idea is to provide a new layer on the AltGr+Space combo. This is easy to do as you would simply use both thumbs, leaving your other eight fingers free to reach the main body of keys, without moving your hands away from the home position.
Example mapping #1:
- AltGr would be unchanged, providing access to accents/symbols, the usual layer 3.
- AltGr+space would be mapped to Shift. Thus, to do a capital T, you would do AltGr+Space+T.
Example mapping #2:
- AltGr would be mapped to Shift.
- AltGr+space would be mapped to the usual AltGr function.
I am currently experimenting with mapping #1, but perhaps if you use Shift more than AltGr, mapping #2 might make more sense.
Although the extra layer requires three keys instead of two, because they are both thumbs, it's actually pretty effortless.
While this solution is not as good as having a split space bar, I think it's a potentially elegant solution to providing more thumb layers without having to move lots of modifiers around.