Home > Keyboard Release, Keyboards > New Keyboard Layout Project: Another Cost and a Strange Development

New Keyboard Layout Project: Another Cost and a Strange Development

I added another fitness element. If the curve follows the natural roll of the hand, then it should be supported. I made it cheaper to change rows if the row changes were (QWERTY positions) DV/VD, FE/EF, MK/KM, or IJ/JI. After adding that and running the program once, I got this strange result:

, p h d k  j c u l y
a n o t m  g s e r i
q b . f z  v w ; x '

It looks so different from the other results that I don’t entirely trust it. But h and o on the same finger? What? But perhaps surprisingly, it actually has very low same finger.

I ran a comparison, and it turns out that it is actually not the best layout for the score set. Apparently, adding that extra fitness criterion caused the program to take longer to converge upon the best layout.

MTGAP 3.5

k c f g b  j h u w .
o s a t d  l n e r i
q v , p z  ; m y x '

Fitness:       18.99
Distance:      1822.85
Inward rolls:  7.50%
Outward rolls: 5.27%
Same hand:     22.29%
Same finger:   0.85%
Row change:    9.89%
Home jump:     0.30%
To center:     3.16%

MTGAP 3.6

, p h d k  j c u l y
a n o t m  g s e r i
q b . f z  v w ; x '

Fitness:       19.49
Distance:      1864.59
Inward rolls:  8.67%
Outward rolls: 6.06%
Same hand:     24.29%
Same finger:   0.76%
Row change:    11.67%
Home jump:     0.23%
To center:     2.92%

3.6 has better same finger, but 3.5 is a good deal better overall. How could this happen? At this time, I have no idea. I will probably not be using the additional criterion, since it makes the convergence rate so slow.

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  1. phynnboi
    August 28, 2009 at 3:48 am

    I made it cheaper to change rows if the row changes were (QWERTY positions) DV/VD, FE/EF, MK/KM, or IJ/JI.

    Are you doing only those four pairs you mentioned? There’s a lot more. Pretty much any where the middle finger or ring finger is above the pinkie or index finger are good. By the same token, you might consider giving extra penalty to row changes involving the middle and ring fingers (like Qwerty’s WD and XE), since those sequences are particularly awkward and tiring to type.

    • August 28, 2009 at 7:04 am

      I only included those four since I don’t find it all that easy when the pinky is involved. Also, I do not find row changes involving middle and ring fingers to be any harder than most other row changes.

      • phynnboi
        August 29, 2009 at 12:03 am

        Really.

        Okay, try this experiment: On Qwerty, keep your pinkie on A and index finger on F. Now, without moving your index finger or pinkie, put your ring finger on W and also put your middle finger on C. Your fingers should be resting on A, W, C, and F.

        Now, this time, keep your pinkie on A and ring finger on S, and put your middle finger on E and also put your index finger on V without moving your pinkie or ring finger. Your fingers should be resting on A, S, E, and V.

        Are you honestly telling me the former was no harder for you than the latter?

      • August 29, 2009 at 12:28 pm

        No, I’m not. The EV combination is included in the “easy” row change category. I didn’t say so explicitly because I didn’t actually think of it, but the EV digraph is counted by my program as “easy”.

      • phynnboi
        August 30, 2009 at 4:14 pm

        Hmm…. That’s a bit beside the point I was trying to make. The second experiment could just as well have been ASCR. That’s certainly harder than ASEV, but still quite a bit easier than AWCF.

        As far as the pinkie goes, you don’t think that, say, ZWDF is a lot easier than QXDF?

        Anyway, are you planning on posting your source code? Don’t worry too much about how it looks; I can almost guarantee that I’ve seen WAY worse. (Unless you’ve gone out of your way to make it look bad, and even then….)

      • August 30, 2009 at 4:40 pm

        I agree that ZW is easier than QX, but the difference there is minor.

        I am going to post my source code, but I’m still working on some refinements. I don’t want to release it until it’s fairly stable.

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