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    Colemak For Windows with QWERTY Ctrl

    • Started by awosaibi
    • 4 Replies:
    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 26-Aug-2021
    • Posts: 4

    Hey guys!

    I posted this as a reply to another thread but thought I'd make it a separate thread for better visibility.


    I'd just recently discovered and started learning Colemak. However, the changed locations of the Ctrl and Win key shortcuts were something I'm not yet ready (nor willing!) to give up, as I frequently switch between English and Arabic and latter also uses QWERTY shortcuts. So I'm more used to their physical locations rather than the associated letters.


    So, I made a new Colemak layout with Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator (MSKLC) which switches the keyboard to QWERTY only when the Ctrl or Win keys are held down. Check it out here!

    Or you can download it directly:
        - Colemak-QWERTY-Ctrl w/ Normal Caps Lock Behaviour: Download
        - Colemak-QWERTY-Ctrl w/ Caps Lock as Backspace:          Download (thanks, vaskozl!)

    N.B. Both of these are installed as separate layouts in case you want to install both and switch between them easily!


    Cheers,

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    • From: Viken, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
    • Posts: 5,125

    Could you share your source files, please?

    I wonder whether what you say is really so. Did you keep QWERTY by keeping the QWERTY VK codes, or have you actually done layer magic like you say? Because those two are not the same, even if some say so. Did you change the shift state 2 and 3 mappings, like it would appear you're saying?

    Last edited by DreymaR (27-Aug-2021 12:06:06)

    *** 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: 26-Aug-2021
    • Posts: 4
    DreymaR said:

    Could you share your source files, please?

    I wonder whether what you say is really so. Did you keep QWERTY by keeping the QWERTY VK codes, or have you actually done layer magic like you say? Because those two are not the same, even if some say so. Did you change the shift state 2 and 3 mappings, like it would appear you're saying?

    Hi DreymaR,

    Have a look at the GitHub repo here: https://github.com/AWosaibi/Colemak-QWERTY-Ctrl

    It is detailed there. It is based on someone else's project where he did this using MSKLC but for Dvorak, his project is also linked in the github page.

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    • From: Viken, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
    • Posts: 5,125

    Okay, thanks. Nice effort and documentation!

    However: What you did is a simple Virtual Key code hack that lots of people use, especially newcomers to the layout who don't yet feel comfortable about changing their shortcuts to reflect the layout. It is even used by people who failed to use MSKLC properly and sort out the VK codes correctly (which the MSKLC GUI doesn't do as you know). It is not something you should think of as copyrightable, if that's what you imply by your copyright notice. The other hack, cheating the key enumeration to achieve Back on Caps is more of an invention as such. I've still seen that one too quoted by different sources.

    Last edited by DreymaR (30-Aug-2021 08:58:55)

    *** 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
    • Posts: 897

    Most of the common Ctrl shortcuts you are likely to use regularly are the same between Colemak and Qwerty aren't they? I can (half) see why a Dvorak learner might be tempted, but less so for a Colemak learner (if they are using vanilla Colemak especially). Do you use specialist apps with a lot of Ctrl shortcuts that would justify it maybe?

    Also: I'm surprised DreymaR didn't mention this but IMO Extend (or some other custom layer) is a better solution for this kind of hackery! You can customize it to map your favourite shortcuts wherever you wan them, while avoiding the need to press control as much. Since the Ctrl key is in a terrible place on a traditional keyboard, this is an all round win-win.

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

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