Emacs Keyboard Design 23: Standard Scancode Emacs on Every Desk

Use standard scancodes and nothing more.


  • Thoughts and changes from 19 follow
  • Nearly everything interesting I want to do with the keyboard I can do in Emacs
    • Emacs runs everywhere I care about
    • Emacs handles USB HID keyboard correctly, use that
    • Save time: don’t have to program layout for OS X and Windows
  • Keep modifiers near center
    • Look weird having duplicates, but it will put more space between home position. Curious if it provides any comfort.
  • Keep space and return large and easy to hit
  • Keep shift near the pinky
    • Goes against original goals
    • Power of familiarity override
    • Can still claw-crab it
  • Page and row navigation are placed somewhat randomly, and I still like it because the navigation keys are still close together
    • Tab couldn’t go any higher
  • Backspace and delete are nice, looking forward to trying that
  • There are more two-handed operations
    • That is OK because they are strong-finger operations
    • Stays true to thumb-index-middle goal
  • I’ll configure Greek and APL bindings inside of Emacs
    • Might get keycaps with them listed
    • Won’t implement in hardware/os though
  • Layout occupies 8×16
    • All keys are used
    • Not a good goal in and of itself
    • Turned out that layout makes sense because backspace and delete are important. If they were one-key operations, tab too, I could remove 2 columns from this layout.
  • Can I buy 3 wide keys anywhere?

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