links for 10 August 2006

who moved my @ key?

UK Keyboard
I’m making more typos than ever these days, and this is what I’m blaming – UK keyboards. They’re driving me mad.
It wasn’t that long ago I started trying to make myself become proficient with a Wacom tablet. At first, I felt like I had the motor skills of a very young (pre-Playstation) child and struggled to bend it to my will. It didn’t take long, maybe a few hours, and I had it pretty much under control. (Although, my ‘double clicks’ are still pretty haphazard, and I’m not always 100% sure how to activate the ‘right click’).
I’ve been in the UK over a month now and using their crazy keyboards for most of that time, and for the life of me I still forget that the @ symbol is not above the number 2 (where it belongs!), but moved right across and down the keyboard where the double quote (“) should be. And where is the double quote? On above the 2.
Why oh why?
Now, I know, there is an extra ‘important’ symbol that needs to be fitted into the UK version of the keyboard – the Pound (£), of course. From my initial observations… there doesn’t really seem to be much other excuse for the ABSOLUTE WHOLESALE REDESIGN of the arrangement of the symbols on the keyboard.
Perhaps someone can explain to me what this symbol is: ¬ and why it is so important that it scores the top LH key, replacing the much more useful (IMHO) ~ symbol which is, funnily enough, now moved down near the @ (eh. I made three mistakes trying to type that symbol just now and I’m writing about how annoyingly hard it is to find… that’s not funny).
Did whoever is responsible for this design have some belief that the spot down near the LHS shift key is a more ergonomic place for frequently used symbols, perhaps? Why else would the @ and ” be swapped around like that? (and @ is, I assume, a relatively recent addition to the keyboard, so it can’t have happened all that long ago, could it?)
Not to mention the # key. Now, at least it has the excuse of being replaced by the £ symbol which seems somewhat inexcusable, but according to the source of the image above, whoever designed UK keyboards for Macs dispensed with the poor old hash key altogether! Now, that’s utter madness. Surely the # symbol is one of the more useful symbols on the keyboard (especially in these wiki editing days!). I certainly use it more than, say the ^ or {} or definitely ¬ keys!
Ironically, it was just the other day when I sat in on a discussion about the QWERTY keyboard and it’s design flaws and historical legacy. Eh. I’m quite happy with QWERTY I have to say… I can’t really think much faster than I can type at the moment anyways… but is there any chance we might all have one QWERTY keyboard… or am I being overly demanding? (and Anglo-centric?)

six months that flew by (another blogging anniversary)

well… I can’t believe that I completely missed my six months blogging anniversary. It must because I’m still getting back into the swing of things… waiting for broadband at home to be connected (next week apparently) so that I’m not trying to squeeze a post in here and there in the office!

I think that in honour of this anniversary it’s about time my blog got a bit of a make over. Given my incredibly meagre technical skills, this essentially means hunting for a theme that i like, that provides a great user experience (more that this one!) and that will play nicely with WordPress and, hopefully, my plugins.

I’ve got to say… I’ve had a few looks over the past few months and found the pickings to be pretty slim. Do you have any suggestions of *good* WordPress themes? I’d love some pointers!

update: i can’t believe no one told me I had a typo. Not just somewhere in the post, but in my headline! few has now been amended to flew (as originally intended… did I intrigue anyone in the meantime, or did you just think i was being v sloppy!)

barCamp London – hooray!

BarCampLondon Sep 2-3

yay! the first BarCamp that I’ve been able to make it along to! I’m very much looking forward to meeting some of the geeks of London and surrounds. I hope they’re nice :)

Anyone else out there going?

Now, as per the Rules of BarCamp, I just need to work out what my contribution will be. I’m welcoming suggestions! Anyone? :)

(p.s. if you’re interested in coming along, I think they’ve hit the quota already but you can put your name on the waiting list).

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