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    Interested in Colemak-DH Mod for Mac (Sierra 10.12.5)

    • Started by Psylocke
    • 11 Replies:
    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 21-Jun-2017
    • Posts: 7

    Hello. I searched through the forum already. Just to make sure, there's currently no easy way of installing the Colemak-DH mod on a MacBook Pro running on the latest Sierra OS?

    I am currently on Week 2 of practicing and using the standard Colemak layout. To be honest, I do find the D and H keys in their present positions a little uncomfortable, so that's why I'm curious about the DH mod.

    Please keep in mind that I'm no programmer. I'm just a person who wants to increase her typing comfort and ultimately, speed and efficiency at work (chat support) and in general, day-to-day typing. On Qwerty, I averaged 75 - 80 WPM in speed, too.

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    • From: UK
    • Registered: 14-Apr-2014
    • Posts: 774

    Welcome... and yes, for those of us who are not satisfied with the original Colemak D and H in the centre column, the DH mod is the perfect solution.

    There has been a contribution for OS X previously, but not being a Mac guy, I have no idea whether this is compatible with Sierra. There are some Mac users around on the forum though so hopefully someone will chime in.

    Your typing speed is already pretty good - anecdotally those with a good touch-typing technique at the start seem to transition faster. But apart from the potential increase in speed, the improvement in comfort is a huge, and even more worthwhile, benefit.

    Last edited by stevep99 (23-Jun-2017 10:45:56)

    Using Colemak Mod-DH with some additional ergonomic keyboard mods.

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    • Registered: 21-Jun-2017
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    Thank you for the warm welcome! I hope other Mac users can confirm that as compatible with Sierra. I'll keep watching this thread for further updates on this.

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    • Registered: 21-Jun-2017
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    Hmm, it's probably my best bet to try some hardware (UHK, maybe?) where I can try to program the Colemak-DH mod in, along with the Caps Lock > Backspace part (which, after reading further into this, I can do using a combo of Sys Prefs > Keyboard and Karibiner - Elements). I'm now on Week 3 of practicing the standard Colemak layout on my MacBook Pro, and I'm averaging between 50 - 60 WPM on 10FF, Typeracer, and NitroType. I'm "slightly uncomfortable" with the D and H standard positions at the moment, a feeling that may or may not disappear after more practice. I will be incorporating Colemak at work, starting tomorrow, and see what happens. If the discomfort with the D-H keys persists, I'll probably try the hardware keyboard route and set enough time aside to adjust to the DH mod. If I do end up buying a programmable keyboard, though, which one will work better for me since I tend to prefer the Magic Keyboard's scissor switch? Will the cherry reds suffice?

    And also, does learning the standard Colemak first and switching to the DH mod later require a short adjustment period, as in 1-2 days? As much as I'd welcome the additional comfort on my fingers and hands, I do not want to sacrifice my productivity at work.

    Last edited by Psylocke (27-Jun-2017 21:39:12)
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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
    • Posts: 4,897

    If you have $50 to burn, I can recommend one of Hasu's TMK "QUICKIE" devices. That way, you can use any of your keyboards. Also, it's easy to carry around with you. I have two, one for work and one for my backpack.

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    • From: UK
    • Registered: 14-Apr-2014
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    Nearly all DH modders would have started with standard Colemak, including myself. It does take a short period of readjustment, as you would expect. The effort in learning Colemak first is not really wasted though, since DH builds on standard Colemak for the most part. The only exception is G - just as you are getting used to its Colemak position, it reverts back to the Qwerty position in Mod-DH.

    A programmable keyboard is good potential solution, as long as you don't mind carrying it around - the UHK does look fairly portable at least. The Mistel Barocco  is another option. Or if you wanted to go down the matrix-like programmable keyboards, there's also the Planck.

    I have one of Hasu's USB-USB remappers also, and would recommend it. It is handy in situations where you need to use an unfamiliar computer/keyboard and can't easily change the settings, and DreymaR has created DH-friendly mappings for it.

    Using Colemak Mod-DH with some additional ergonomic keyboard mods.

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
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    And Extend, let's not forget our beloved Extend! <3

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    • Registered: 21-Jun-2017
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    Thank you for all the helpful suggestions! Despite practicing a lot via the sites I previously mentioned, the real test was typing standard Colemak at work. I believe I did well, although slower in speed (around 45 WPM with 97% accuracy) for the first day. I'm sure I'll improve as I continue on my regular, day-to-day typing tasks.

    The Hasu device combined with the Magic keyboard, a BT dongle, and USB hub seem a bit clunky for me since I prefer a more portable, streamlined setup. I'm honestly not that great in putting together a keyboard myself, so the Planck is out. Not sure about the Mistel Barocco, but I'm liking the additional key cluster and trackball modules with the UHK split kb setup. I do plan on using whatever keyboard I do purchase with a dual iMac (work) plus the occasional MacBook Pro (personal) setup, so do you think that the UHK configuration will work? And oh, will using that with cherry reds present more pressure? I do prefer using key switches that require as little pressure from the fingertips as possible.

    I'm currently using a Rollermouse with my Magic Keyboard if that helps. Using a regular, even a vertical mouse, just makes the pain on my wrists and arms worse. I've tried using trackballs on each side of the keyboard, but that's too clunky when switching between computers.

    Last edited by Psylocke (28-Jun-2017 23:49:42)
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    • From: Chicago
    • Registered: 27-Apr-2016
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    Psylocke said:

    I'm honestly not that great in putting together a keyboard myself, so the Planck is out.

    You can buy somebodies pre-assembled Planck at reddit r/mechmarket. People periodically sell them there. Actually it is not so hard to put together Planck, you pretty much just need to solder switches in place, programming it with custom layout may take more efforts than assembling. Putting together Let's Split - this is the real challenge. :)

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    ckofy said:
    Psylocke said:

    I'm honestly not that great in putting together a keyboard myself, so the Planck is out.

    You can buy somebodies pre-assembled Planck at reddit r/mechmarket. People periodically sell them there. Actually it is not so hard to put together Planck, you pretty much just need to solder switches in place, programming it with custom layout may take more efforts than assembling. Putting together Let's Split - this is the real challenge. :)

    I have no soldering experience whatsoever haha. I researched all the keyboard suggestions mentioned on this thread so far, and for my needs, I'm leaning toward the UHK one combined with the cluster and trackball modules. If Hasu ever makes a device that's suited for Bluetooth keyboards (Apple), then I'll most likely purchase that instead to use with my current hardware, especially when traveling.

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
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    Psylocke said:

    If Hasu ever makes a device that's suited for Bluetooth keyboards (Apple), then I'll most likely purchase that instead to use with my current hardware, especially when traveling.

    How does that Bluetooth keyboard work? Because if it's got a Bluetooth dongle in a USB port then Hasu's USB-2-USB converter will work with it. At least, I'm pretty sure it will, unless the converter gives the dongle too little current.

    If I'm correct, the Bluetooth receiver in built into the Mac. I suppose you could still use an USB dongle unless you find that too silly and expensive?

    Last edited by DreymaR (30-Jun-2017 12:43:37)

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    Come to think of it, the Bluetooth is built into my iMac. I'll need a smaller USB hub, though.

    Update: Not sure why. My typing speed at work went down to about 52 WPM while using regular Colemak. For some reason today, I kept pressing the wrong letters at times. I am trying to focus more on my accuracy, though.

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