Please get yourself a proper keyboard. They keyboard on your laptop, or even a good external one, is likely destroying your wrists. You're injuring yourself.
I highly recommend the microsoft sculpt keyboard. It's cheap (for something that will help you protect your livlihood) and will make a substantial difference in the longevity of your wrists.
Keyboards should be split. If you're not using a sculpt at the least, please change that. You'll thank yourself when you're older.
(Currently typing this on a keyboard.io -- it's a lot more expensive than the sculpt, and a lot of that cost goes to the cool factor of it, imo. The sculpt is a great keyboard.)
- Your hands and wrists pronate to type on a flat keyboard. Holding _any_ position for a prolonged period increases chance for injury. Other things such as pens and mugs don't require us to turn our wrists that much. Some say the ideal wrist position is more like a handshake.
- The arm angle in on the standard keyboard as the home keys (for the index on 'f' and 'j') is positioned too close. This can cause either excessive wrist rotation or hunching of shoulder when typing.
I am sure not everybody has the same risks to injury, every hand and body is unique, either muscle composition/strength/flexibility, bone ratios/geometry, and others. But it doesn't hurt to try these alternative keyboard/layouts to find out whether it's more comfortable _for you_. Again, most of us makes money by typing into keyboards, it would be insane to see a truck driver seating on a bench seat just because it's 'standard' or cheaper.
If we’re making general claims that a specific device will prevent a medical condition then we need evidence from clinical studies.
I have various observations, which I'm going to write up in a post soon, but here's a summary:
* It's amazing, I never want to use a non-QMK keyboard again. Just the fact that I can use layers and never have to take my hands away from the home row for anything is great.
* Having my Caps Lock be a combination of Ctrl and Esc is great, but I've done this for years with my normal keyboard as well using xcape.
* Having my Shift keys be parentheses and pressing both of them to activate Caps Lock is very convenient.
* I don't have any problem switching to my laptop's keyboard at any time. I noticed I type "wrong" on normal keyboards, probably because I hold my wrists straight so I can only use 2-3 fingers on each hand to type. This means that I don't have much problem with wrist position, but the split keyboard feels a bit better.
* Using a linear keyboard might have been a bit unnecessary, since I basically had to learn to touch-type properly again, starting at around 5 WPM (from 110 WPM normally).
* I still haven't learned all the keyboard shortcuts, though I'm getting better.
I don't remember more at this time, but I'll be happy to answer any questions anyone has.
Like another commenter said: ortholinear (not staggered) is a huge win. Perhaps even higher priority than split, but close at least. Don’t settle for staggered.
(I emphatically second the urging of ergonomic HIDs!)
For me that's the most painful, and anecdotally I hear twisting your wrists is a notorious contributor to injury. But, as always, do your own randomized controlled trial if you want to be sure :)
The Kinesis Advantage is a much better choice.
Split keyboards solve the problem of ulnar deviation. This doesn't affect me as much as other RSIs, so I don't optimise for this.
I am convinced that technique can compensate for more strain than equipment can. Keep wrists straight, use gross motor (shoulders, arms), work with gravity (in fingers and in arms). Relax.
Bad keyswitches can force you to put in extra effort. But good technique, positioning and furniture can get a lot out of a budget keyboard.
I do however second the thought that keyboard (and ergonomics in general - external monitors set at correct height, good mouse, chair and table at good height, etc.) is not something you should ignore if you plan on keeping working with computers.
I was also very excited about the moonrim, a project that portended to go a step further and change the hands' orientation, so they would face inward instead of down. Sadly, it ended up not taking off.
At CES Samsung demo’ed a “keyboard” using the Selfie camera.
Once we use a camera to track our hands, we can invent other motions to augment a traditional keyboard.
Also, this keyboard reminds me of DataHand:
(Yes I have RSI problems.)
Don't have a child's fingers and a eagle's eyes? Suck it grandpa! You weren't part of our hyperconsuming target demographic anyway.
I used a Datahand for several years and while it was very easy on fingers (the activation pressure was much less than typical keyboards, even Topre's), the tactile feedback from the switches was I think essential for typing efficiently.
I miss that thing...
: https://youtu.be/sJO0n6kvPRU?t=122 (minute 2:02)
The stories are basically illustrations of how great the Three Laws of Robotics are, which is not surprising since Asimov invented them himself.
Very interesting 63-comment thread from 6 years ago.
I wonder what the incidence of people continuing using their strange keyboards long term, vs. raving about them and then not using them after a few months, really is. And what happened to the guy who bought my Datahand and paid international shipping to get it.
I've had a couple of DataHands (and still keep one under my bed). It's a real marvel. For certain repetitive strain injuries: it's the only thing that helps.
I'm using regular keyboards now, and I'm grateful that I can. But I look forward to the day when anybody who needs one can find one.
After one look at Coleman / Colemak, and typing "he" (the second most common digraph in English) I'm sticking with Dvorak.
From what I hear and having attempted to play one myself, it’s mentally taxing and hard to express artistically.
PS. It's also IR, not bluetooth - but thats a trivial DIY fix.
Looked cool, though.