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    ANSI Wide Mod with Space->Shift

    • Started by stevep99
    • 3 Replies:
    • Reputation: 70
    • From: UK
    • Registered: 14-Apr-2014
    • Posts: 759

    I was looking at the ANSI "ShiftZ" version of the Angle Mod, where Z is moved to the left-shift key. And then I was also thinking about the Space->Shift idea, and combining it with the Wide Mod.

    As we know, the Wide Mod moves the right-hand keys one unit to the right - but with the exception of the bottom row. So, what if we instead  applied the Wide Mod to those keys too? We would end up moving Space, AltGr and Win one key over, allowing the spacebar to become one huge Shift key. This has the nice side effect of freeing up the two conventional shift keys, which is pretty handy on an ANSI keyboard when you're using the Wide Mod..

    Take a look at this:

    angle_wide_shiftz_dh_ansi.png

    In other words, ANSI DH wide version but with Z on left-shift, / on right-shift and right-hand bottom row keys (including space) moved to the right.

    Advantages:
    - There are two thumb keys: Shift and Space. IMO the ergonomic benefit of a thumb key Shift is massive. It's easy to reach any other key while holding the spacebar. The spacebar being so big should also be user friendly for those who like to Shift with either hand, but using the left-thumb would be recommended.
    - Maybe it feels weird to have a small Space key, but standard AltGr position is good enough quality if the Wide Mod is applied, and plenty of ergo keyboards have small space buttons these days.
    - Keeps the other nice things about Wide mod, including convenient Return and backspace keys.
    - It allows the standard positions for both Z and / to be used - no need to move them to the middle of the board.
    - There are two spare keys in the middle trench that could be used for whatever the user wants.

    Disadvantages:
    - You can't move keycaps for Z and / so they would need to be labelled wrongly unless you used blank caps.
    - We have lost the "Menu" key, but it's no biggie. Could re-assign it to one of the middle keys if you really wanted it.
    - Some people are averse to messing around with modifier keys.

    Still, I think the result is pretty ergonomic, given the limitations of the hardware. I'm going to try it out on my laptop. If any ANSI users out there fancy giving this a try, do report back findings!

    Last edited by stevep99 (03-May-2020 14:49:05)

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

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
    • Posts: 4,852

    Looks nice!  d( ^◇^)b

    The loss of the Menu key is no biggie at all if you have Extend. It's there and I don't use it more than what's easily served by Extend.

    The thing about messing with modifiers is still a thing to me, as it feels hard to move across platforms. It may work in EPKL and/or controllers but then it gets hard with MSKLC and/or Linux and/or Mac...

    *** 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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    If I remember correctly, editing modifiers generally seemed to work OK on Windows with AHK, so presumably EPKL should work equally well. But even in the event of problems, there is always SharpKeys which ought to be pretty rock solid as it operates at a lower level.

    On Linux, I don't really see it as much different to your existing BigBag modifications to evdev. You can simply re-assign keycodes just as you do for the wide and angle mods etc.

    I don't know about Mac, but from what people have posted I gather there is good support for key remapping.

    You might be missing out on all sorts of hacky fun :p

    Last edited by stevep99 (04-May-2020 15:12:33)

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

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
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    True enuf. Linux shouldn't be hard I guess. So it's mostly MSKLC then, for the Win installer.

    With EPKL, seems to me there's some issues with making non-modifiers into modifiers right now. Something with key repeat. I should be able to work it out eventually but not sure where to begin. Mapping a key to LAlt (and probably RAlt too) doesn't work well.

    Last edited by DreymaR (04-May-2020 22:12:13)

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

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