Shift Key Placement in Keyboard Layout

ckj

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A few people on this forum and elsewhere have suggested in future products we swap the right "Shift" key with the "Up Arrow" key. This has sparked a debate since swapping keys puts the shift key in a more natural place, but then puts the up arrow key in a awkward position compared to most keyboards.

We are eager to get feedback from existing REDFLY customers familiar with the keyboard layout as your input will be one of the factors involved in making future decisions.

Images of each layout below...

Existing Layout:
Arrowkeys.jpg


Swapped Keys:
ArrowkeysMod.jpg
 
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mknollman

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I agree that the keys are oddly placed, but by making this switch I think you just add an out of place up arrow to the still out of place and too small shift key. My suggestion (for what it is worth) would be too skinny up the space bar a little. Place all 4 arrows on the bottom row and make the rt shift twice as wide as it is now. That would by my preference, but I am also kinf of wierd.
 

drowe

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I agree that the keys are oddly placed, but by making this switch I think you just add an out of place up arrow to the still out of place and too small shift key. My suggestion (for what it is worth) would be too skinny up the space bar a little. Place all 4 arrows on the bottom row and make the rt shift twice as wide as it is now. That would by my preference, but I am also kinf of wierd.

That would be nice. I find I have to look at the arrow keys on whatever I'm typing on since I use them so seldom, but I touch-type the shift key. I've seen that layout on some notebooks I've used in the past.
 

zad225

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You absolutely have to switch the shift key with the up arrow key. The reason being that the right shift key is ABSOLUTELY essential to touch typists, like myself. I can actually type ok with the smaller keyboard, but the problem is that dang right shift key. You don't need an up arrow key for touch typing. It's just so irritating to hit the up arrow key instead of the shift key, causing your cursor to go to the line above it, and then start some useless mumbo jumbo.
 

zad225

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I agree that the keys are oddly placed, but by making this switch I think you just add an out of place up arrow to the still out of place and too small shift key. My suggestion (for what it is worth) would be too skinny up the space bar a little. Place all 4 arrows on the bottom row and make the rt shift twice as wide as it is now. That would by my preference, but I am also kinf of wierd.

I actually agree with this suggestion. Because, to tell you the truth, I'm starting to get used to the right shift key all the way down there, but the best solution is to make the right shift key double the size and place all the arrow keys on the lower row.
 

mknollman

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I want to add to my above suggestion - instead of or in addition skinnying the space bar - maybe just get rid of the right alt key. I only use the alt key for alt-tab and only on the left then. Then still put the 4 arrow keys on the bottom and double the width of the right shift key.
 

graham.hughes

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I'd be irritated by having up and down keys that are not in line. Shift keys need to be at the edge of the keyboard, where you can press them less carefully. You would be forever pressing "up" by mistake.
 

BengtBeier

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Hm, how hard is it to actually change the key caps?

Maybe you could simply offer a option in the software to change the placement of the shift and up keys and people who prefer the shift key on the left could simply exchange the key caps manually...
 

Aware

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I'm not a touch typist, but I too keep hitting the up arrow instead of the shift key. I voted for the change.

My laptop keyboard addresses this by dropping the arrow keys down one row, but the RedFly keyboard is small, and a standard one used by other devices (so far as I can tell). Swapping the arrow/shift keys is a relatively easy change, compared to making larger physical changes.
 

mholmes7

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I agree that the keys are oddly placed, but by making this switch I think you just add an out of place up arrow to the still out of place and too small shift key. My suggestion (for what it is worth) would be too skinny up the space bar a little. Place all 4 arrows on the bottom row and make the rt shift twice as wide as it is now. That would by my preference, but I am also kinf of wierd.

I really like mknollman's suggestion. The elimination of the right alt key variant would also be very good.

If these two changes are too expensive, I would encourage you to swap the shift and up-arrow keys. The current position/size of the shift key is the only element of the Redfly that actively dislike.

No matter which 'solution' is selected, I would hope you would make an option available to old owners to 'fix' their machines. (Of course, such a fix would almost certainly be most practical with a simple shift/arrow swap.)
 

kraski

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I want to add to my above suggestion - instead of or in addition skinnying the space bar - maybe just get rid of the right alt key. I only use the alt key for alt-tab and only on the left then. Then still put the 4 arrow keys on the bottom and double the width of the right shift key.

I'm OK with the keys as they are. But I'm no touch typist. If you didn't want to lose context with the arrow keys but really wanted to move the shift key inside, my suggestion is to swap shift & right arrow with the up & down arrows. Just a thought.
 

mknollman

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I guess I see the above pic as odd because I have never seen arrow keys in an L configuration before. I have seen all the arrows on the bottom though and have even used notebooks that were designed this way. That is why I think that putting all 4 arrows on the bottom row, removing the Rt ALT key, and doubling the shift is the best all around answer.
 

cuzlion

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Hey, what about a driver option that let each user make the choice on existing Redfly's? I realize that might be impossible but we could then use the highly complex "masking tape" hack to correct the key faces if we decided to swap them, assuming those little chicklets don't just snap off and back on. Cuz
 

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