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Keyboard Layout Analyser



Instructions

This is a tool for analyzing keyboard layouts.

It uses a scoring system that simulates typing a large volume of standard English text, and rates each layout according to two factors:

1. A base effort value based on the ease with which each key can be typed. The green keys represent the "home position".

2. An additional penalty that is incurred for each pair of successive keys that were typed with same finger (i.e. same-finger bigrams). The amount of penalty depends on the distance the finger moves to type both keys, i.e. the row difference between the two keys forming the bigram.

Importantly, this tool lets you can modify the input values - the effort weights of the keys and the penalties for same-finger bigrams - to whatever you think they should be.

To use, select a layout from the list or type in your own (the format is 3 rows of ten characters, space-separated) into the top-left panel. Enter key effort values in the top-right panel, and also three penalty values for same-finger bigrams.

Three possible configurations for the left hand are available. The chosen configuration will affect which finger presses each of the keys on the left-hand bottom row, and will also affect the key-effort scoring. A matrix style keyboard configuration is also now available. To see the results click the "Analyze" button - results will shown according to the pre-calculated letterą and bigram frequency stats. The lower score, the better the keyboard layout.


Possible key-finger configurations for the left hand. Keys indicated with the same colour should be typed with the same finger.

Results shown by finger refer to: left-hand (0-4) and right-hand (5-9). Fingers 0/9 are pinkies, 1/8 are ring, 2/7 are middle, 3/6 are; index, and 4/5 (not included in stats) are thumbs.

For more explanation and a comparison of layouts, see the Colemak Mod-DH layout comparison page.

For details on the keyboard layouts shown, see these pages:

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