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    Tricksy bigrams and how to handle them?

    • Started by DreymaR
    • 6 Replies:
    • Reputation: 114
    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
    • Posts: 4,742
    Tricksy bigramses!

    While typing 'descent' today, I noticed that I was struggling with the SC same-finger bigram. No wonder, it's quite common and not easy out of the box. So I thought we could debate which bi-/trigrams we find awkward on Colemak(-CAW) and whether we have good ideas to handle them more easily.

    C has a somewhat challenging placement in Colemak. On a normally row-staggered keyboard the Angle mod makes it easier to hit, but it's still lower row and might've been elsewhere if not for the convenience of keeping ZXC(V) together?

    I think I'm better off typing SC by sliding in the ring finger for C. I've tried it a bit and it seems much nicer. I'll consider whether it's worth training into muscle memory.

    Science, ascertain, ascites, descending, ischemia, abscond, scaring, schema, sculler, scintillate, screen, scroll... ;-)

    Last edited by DreymaR (13-Dec-2017 16:19:04)

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    • From: Chicago
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    Although the SC may be typed slower than other bigrams, I've noticed that I rarely do mistakes in this one. Sliding the ring finger might be an option for row staggered keyboard, but in columnar staggered that I'm using now (ErgoDox) this is too much inward move against the natural fingers position.

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
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    Indeed I didn't consider other stagger schemes and for those I think you're right. Thanks for the input. :-)

    Last edited by DreymaR (13-Dec-2017 16:20:40)

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    DreymaR said:
    Tricksy bigramses!

    While typing 'descent' today, I noticed that I was struggling with the SC same-finger bigram. No wonder, it's quite common and not easy out of the box. So I thought we could debate which bi-/trigrams we find awkward on Colemak(-CAW) and whether we have good ideas to handle them more easily.

    C has a somewhat challenging placement in Colemak. On a normally row-staggered keyboard the Angle mod makes it easier to hit, but it's still lower row and might've been elsewhere if not for the convenience of keeping ZXC(V) together?

    I think I'm better off typing SC by sliding in the ring finger for C. I've tried it a bit and it seems much nicer. I'll consider whether it's worth training into muscle memory.

    Science, ascertain, ascites, descending, ischemia, abscond, scaring, schema, sculler, scintillate, screen, scroll... ;-)


    SC is an odd one, as if you use vanilla Colemak but with non-standard (i.e. comfortable) fingering, as I used to, then you can type C with the index finger and it's not a tricksy bigram at all. Of course, if you do that, you get a CT bigram instead, no nothing gained.

    SC isn't that bad I don't think, if anything LM and LK seem worse.

    Actually thinking about, the mirror image on the other side of the keyboard of SC is actually "E," — which is probably much more common as a lot of words end with e, and are therefore likely to be followed by a comma. For some reason the punctuation bigrams get noticed less.

    Last edited by stevep99 (13-Dec-2017 16:53:39)

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

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    stevep99 said:

    Actually thinking about, the mirror image on the other side of the keyboard of SC is actually "E," — which is probably much more common as a lot of words end with e, and are therefore likely to be followed by a comma. For some reason the punctuation bigrams get noticed less.

    I've noticed both "ue" and "e," on the right side. So what, it can not be ideal everywhere. The only way to avoid same finger bigrams with E is probably put it to the thumb, the one that not in use for spacebar.

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    Good point about the punctuation bigrams. I'm guilty of pausing between words – I've noticed that when I don't my typing speeds go up.

    The same trick is useful for the E-comma bigram, so maybe if the SC fingering proves useful I'll do that too.

    As for LK/LM (I'm assuming you mean with the Curl(DH) mod?), they don't cause me any trouble because I already had alternative fingering in place for those. The Index and middle fingers are so agile and strong that there are many good options for the many index finger keys. I just type the L with my middle finger, and find it very easy to do. The LH bigram (still on our mod) is worse but I think I do the same there.

    I'm guessing and hoping that many of you already use improved fingering for the middle-trench bigrams TG/GT (rare) and KN/NK (not so rare)? On vanilla Colemak those are TD/DT (rare) and HN/NH (not rare) so it's similar there.

    UE/EU? Yeah, no good ideas there. Luckily it's not all that common except in the EU. ;-)

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    DreymaR said:

    As for LK/LM (I'm assuming you mean with the Curl(DH) mod?)

    Yes, although with the new K positon LK is not so bad, but LM is worse. I'm not very good at using alternative fingering for those so I normally just accept the slowdown. To be honest I find all the same-finger bigrams in Colemak are rare enough to not worry much about.

    DreymaR said:

    UE/EU? Yeah, no good ideas there. Luckily it's not all that common except in the EU. ;-)

    Ah, so that's why Norway never joined! Sweet Colemak tricksy bigram avoidance :P

    "Fuel" is the other one I tend to notice.

    Last edited by stevep99 (14-Dec-2017 12:49:34)

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

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