Hoping for a keyboard vote


ible

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Hi EvilDragon,

I think I can speak for many when I say we are hoping for a vote on the keyboard layout.  I suppose that is question 1.

However, it seems like you are partial to Saber's layout, despite there being other keyboards with the same qualities that you mentioned in your post, e.g. quick keyboard shortcuts to ä, ü, etc, standard QWERTY layout, number row, etc.

So here is question 2:  Are there hidden constraints that you wish the keyboards to fulfill, like having modifiers in certain locations, having two keyboard shifts, or having certain hardware keys (wifi, BT, etc)?  We are of course aware of the two-wide Pandora spacebar constraint, which many of the layouts in http://boards.openpandora.org/topic/17568-final-keyboard-layout-proposals//URL] satisfy.  And while DosBox compatibility sounds nice, it seems like we will have to "roll our own version" of DosBox (TrashyMG's words) for speed considerations, so we might as well fix it for our keymat too.

For example, is this layout less ideal because it has shift and meta on the left side of the keyboard, or because it doesn't have two keyboard shifts?

http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/19dc982f0e70a5494f67ff1fc2ff7569

I feel like we can get a bit more out of our keyboard if we don't require two keyboard shifts, for instance a dedicated '" key or a dedicated /? key:

http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/layouts/a8f261dbcd7fd3ee3e71c03152393923

But perhaps that is just me.

I wanted to understand your pick better, so we understand the design criteria.  But perhaps you will put us all out of our misery soon and just pick something random ;) .
 
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TrashyMG

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Yes, let the people who haven't spent time to think things through vote.
 
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TrashyMG

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Except the buyer isn't normally trying to create a functional keyboard, they assume it does work.
 
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comradekingu

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You dont arrive at a functional keyboard by voting, you in this case vote over what designed concepts' finality is preferable.

Edit: If it looks like it doesnt work, to them, then thats the issue.
 
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_wb_

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Yes, let the people who haven't spent time to think things through vote.
Question is: does ED currently have time to think things through? ;)

I agree that a vote may not be the best idea, though it might help to get an idea of what the community wants amongst the current iteration of "final" proposals. I would make it a public poll, and make it clear that it's not meant to be the ultimate decision mechanism but that ED still has the final say.
 

EvilDragon

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Not much time - and the keyboard thread REALLY takes time to read with a gazillion replies.

I'll probably not vote for anything but will read everything in there, think about it and change the keyboard layout until all useful ideas have been implemented.
 

fusion_power

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You knew that would happen when you summoned it, ED. ;) Keyboard releated threads are DANGEROUS here, run for your life if you spot one!
 
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ible

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I appreciate your taking time to hear the community speak, ED, and understand we can't all have it our own way.

I would be happy to make an unofficial keyboard poll, but not sure of all the new ideas floating around there (I know I've made a few since Saber's layout was given priority), or if I can be unbiased...
 

Saber

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Not much time - and the keyboard thread REALLY takes time to read with a gazillion replies.


I'll probably not vote for anything but will read everything in there, think about it and change the keyboard layout until all useful ideas have been implemented.
Is there a deadline you have in mind when you must have your keyboard finalized for pre-production? 
 

Neelix

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From ED's keyboard thread:

It occurs to me that we are lacking a lot of information in the technical design of the Pyra. The keyboard matrix, the behaviour of the game keys and what all is on a GPIO, whether any of them are on interrupt lines or attached to the PMIC like the Pandora's menu button, probably a few other things I'm not thinking of right now.

Can't come up with a final design suggestion without knowing these things.
Is there any chance of releasing this technical info?

- Neelix
 

Grench

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Not much time - and the keyboard thread REALLY takes time to read with a gazillion replies.
That's why _wb_ made handy dandy summary thread where everyone gets one response to put their final keyboard idea. Discussion for those ideas are off in other threads but you don't need to read them.
I'm not sure if we're there yet.  All of the keyboard creators seem to be actively learning from each other and there have been some 'breakthroughs'.  Yes, there is some pointless bickering, BUT there is also a fair amount of idea sharing and collaboration.

My layout and _wb_'s for example look very little like they did a month ago and Saber's has changed a fair amount.

We're all still learning from each other and throwing ideas against the wall to see what sticks - mostly in the news keyboard thread these days and -not- in the sticky general thread (everything in the sticky is badly outdated now).

Will there ever be true 100% consensus?  Unlikely.   Has there been progress?  HUGE amounts.

Edit:

And on topic to the original poster - No.  I don't think there is anything to be gained by a vote.  It's a pile of people with no real idea what they're looking at making judgments based on first impressions alone.  The decision of what the final result is needs to be ED's alone, BUT hopefully he will accept the hard work that many of us have put into the process and take it into account.  Where we're at now compared to where the Pandora is as a final product are worlds apart.  The Pyra has the potential to be several factors of improvement over the Pandora's keyboard.
 
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moxie

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And on topic to the original poster - No. I don't think there is anything to be gained by a vote. It's a pile of people with no real idea what they're looking at making judgments based on first impressions alone. The decision of what the final result is needs to be ED's alone,
Quoted For Great Justice!
 

comradekingu

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And since all the people making layouts arrive at different things, do we know any better?

It doesnt hurt to see how things are welcomed by a greater mass of users. Nor does that take away any final say in the matter...

Edit: Why are first-impressions without value? I should think that makes a great deal of difference when deciding when to buy something.

Edit2: I have actually changed my layout based on the votes med an wb have initated, and thats even based on not seeing the final product. Forgetting people when you design is one quick way to arrive nowhere.
 
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Neelix

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First impressions are not without value, but they become useless if there is nothing to back them up. The focus needs to be on usability. Getting the first impression right is just a matter of polish.

- Neelix
 

comradekingu

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The people on this forum are quite a bit more knowledgable and technically inclined than to be presented with a keyboard layout and not know what its value is. In the case of dismissing something based on your own expectations, thats very much what keyboard practice is like. Changing it never works. You cap the market at fractions of what it could be. Consider dvorak.

I firmly believe that usability is tied to the ability of grasping a concept. And then being able to use it. Both of which should be as intuitive as possible.

There is plenty of reasoning to support the argument as to how the different layouts got to where they are. At least the ones who arrived at any sort of finality.

If you don't have that sort of reasoning, the question of value could be brought up. I am none the wiser, but it looks like it isn't valuable/final enough to not change a whole lot.

Edit: I bow to popular vote, not my own confidence. (because the latter is worthless)
 
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rygD

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First impressions are not without value, but they become useless if there is nothing to back them up. The focus needs to be on usability. Getting the first impression right is just a matter of polish.


- Neelix
I strongly agree with this.  It wouldn't be surprising to see people  that haven't sat and thought about usability, and maybe run through different scenarios for things they actually do occasionally, pick something resembling a typical smartfone-with-physical-keyboard layout.  

Since going back to one of those (on it now) I have grown to appreciate the very flawed, yet functional, Pandora keyboard even more.  I sometimes poke around in a terminal, and almost immediately wished for a Ctrl key.  There are MANY more that most users may not need that some of us use constantly (tilde and pipe, for example).  Also no Alt/AltGr.  Pretty much just shift and the US number row and letters.  It is clean and simple, like I like, and looks pretty good for most things until you try to do anything other than text.  There isn't even an escape key... 

It is important to keep these types of keyboards in mind since the Pyra keyboard will be closer to that than a desktop or laptop keyboard, and we want full international desktop functionality.

For reference, I have 54 keys on here and 4 physical buttons.
 
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