Jon Aquino's Mental Garden

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Monday, July 03, 2006

Kinesis keyboard--not working out for me

Well, the $400 Kinesis keyboard that I purchased 6 months ago isn't working out for me. While it did solve the pain I was having in my pinky (from all that Ctrl pressing), I'm getting new aches and pains in my forearms and thumbs. So I'm going to switch to the keyboard on my IBM laptop, which has the standard layout but is really well designed. The keys require little force to press (perhaps this was a factor?), and it offers you a choice of several mouse inputs--I'm using four: touchpad, trackpoint, left mouse, and right mouse.

The Kinesis isn't a complete waste however--every key is assignable to a macro, so I'm assigning a useful function to each of the keys. The ones I have so far are: move window to top monitor, move window to bottom monitor, open link in tab, open link in window, make window 640x480, make window 800x600, make window 1024x768. AutoHotKey has been supremely useful for these macros.


  • Hey. Just browsing through here from the new VIJUG links page.

    I solved my pained pinky problems by making the useless capslock key another ctrl key. It took a bit of getting used to, but now I barely have to move my pinky while shortcutting. Pain gone!

    In gnome you can do this in the keyboard preferences, and I think in windows I think it's a registry trick.

    By Blogger MikeLin, at 7/19/2006 9:23 a.m.  

  • Hi Mike--yup that's a very good thing to do--I've tried that on and off.

    Actually I'm going to give the kinesis another go--I did drop some hard coin on it. But I'm using the default layout--before I put tons of stuff on the thumbs.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 7/19/2006 10:03 p.m.  

  • Man, I was wishing I could use this keyboard, as conventional keyboards make my left-pinky hurt (with all the ctrl pressing). But this thing was giving me forearm pain.

    But I stumbled on a solution: tilt it towards you. I stuck a pocketbook under the front of the keyboard. No forearm pain.

    I think this is working because, with the keyboard titled forward, my wrists don't lie on the wrist rests--perhaps the pressure of the wrist rests was causing the pain.

    Happy as a duck!

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 9/09/2006 6:51 p.m.  

  • Actually tilting the keyboard was a bit unstable - I'm having a lot more luck with it by (1) lowering it (2) switching back to the original Kinesis layout (instead of putting *everything* on the thumbs).

    I have it lowered by putting it on a TV tray instead of on the table, which at 30" is 1.5-2" too high.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 11/14/2006 12:52 a.m.  

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