Subject: Re: Lisp options on Mac OS X (Was: Best combination of {hardware / lisp implementation / operating system})
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 26 Oct 2002 14:59:25 +0000
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Ng Pheng Siong
| Are there any key-mapping or keyboard suggestions I can try?  Any one
| programs Lisp using something like Dragon Naturally Speaking? ;-) 

  Emacs actually comes with a builting Emacs Aptitude Test.  Do you remap
  your keyboard or the Emacs keybindings before the chords and sequences it
  comes with by default have wreaked havoc with your hands?  If you do not
  do anything to make Emacs more convenient for yourself, you may not have
  the prerequisite aptitude to use it productive.

  I have a "standard" PC keyboard (except with tons of function keys) and
  have moved the digits off the normal keypad and onto the numeric keypad
  and moved all the shifted symbols down to unshifted, and then physically
  moved the column that used to read 6YHN and all columns right of it one
  column right.  The vacated holes in they keyboard are filled with whatever
  left-over keys you have, and then you tell your keyboard driver og X or
  whatever that you have placed the parens {} [] () and <> (unshifted and
  shifted) in what used to be the 6YHN colum.  This move some incredibly
  frequently used keys to between your index fingers instead of terrorizing
  your right little finger.  Also, return and backspace are now one column
  closer and also strain the little finger much less.  You also get a little
  more space between your hands, which some of those ergonomic stunts seem
  to argue is a good thing.  Also, with Unicode, typing becomes much more
  fun than remembering those TeX monstrosities, but the downside is that you
  need a lot more keys.  So AltGr is also one column closer to your right
  thumb and painless to use even with other keys on the right hand.  Then
  the left thumb can be used for space, too, or the Alt key that you can use
  to teach Emacs to use much shorter commands.  Also, remap the useless CAPS
  key to something useful, like window manager shortcuts.  The really good
  thing about this keyboard layout is that your computer is /secure/ even if
  someone should break in and get console access.

  I have a system-wide Xmodmap file because the keyboard driver stuff under
  Linux is so goddamned "i18nized" it has become impossible to customize to
  get predictable results, plus even Debian nukes those files on upgrades.
  Let me know if you would like to see it.

Erik Naggum, Oslo, Norway

Act from reason, and failure makes you rethink and study harder.
Act from faith, and failure makes you blame someone and push harder.