The words you are reading have been typed at half my usual speed from a new keyboard, delivered around twelve hours ago.
I started making some changes to the default configuration pretty much immediately and I want to describe the reasoning behind these changes:
As a German, the first thing you will want to do is switch to a configuration that supports German keys. Especially the symbol keys need swapping out. While you could instead just change layouts on your system, I do prefer just simply having everything work as expected plug-and-play after maybe a more cumbersome inital configuration.
Furthermore, number keys do not count as numpad keys. Especially, if you use Blender, you will want to correct these on the default configuration.
A week later
Now typing at roughtly 90% of my usual typing speed (50-60 WPM instead of ~70 WPM).
Coding is still somewhat frustrating, but various typing websites helped me get my speed back up to something bareable for communication, email, blogging, …
I think one of the things potentially leading to various carpal tunnel issues I have had in the past was that I wasn’t using 5 fingers for typing! While I learned the usual 10-finger typing technique as a kid, I found it too cumbersome and developed my own technique which is mostly based on the index and middle fingers.
This technique had the advantage of being context-aware. Hence depending on which key I pressed previously, a different finger or even hand might be pressing the next key, if it were more conveniently reached by it.
Disadvantage was a _very_ frequent rotation of the ankle to reach e.g. Q, Y/Z etc with middle or index fingers. That together with the counter rotation for German symbol keys (mostlyy Shift with a number) represented heavy strain on the wrist tendons.
Through trying to find excercises to speed up my typing I found that people typing at 170+ WPM all use all fingers. Hence I started forcing myself to do the same. Kind of felt like relearning typing all over, but I’m confident that I will eventually out-type my old self.
I still struggle with various system shortcuts, though, the muscle memory there is harder to redirect.
The Moonlander feels very high quality. Going back to my old keyboard feels _very_ strange. This is probably alone through now being fully mechanical while the previous was a mecha-membrane hybrid.
The reconfiguration is pretty fun and while there’s still a lot of potential, the idea of effortlessly being able to type all symbols needed for programming amazes me.
One of the issues I found was that you have decision to make between reaching the thumb keys conveniently and tenting the keyboard:
If you have smaller hands, it is recommended to tent the thumb-pad upwards, but that makes the keyboard very unstable if you tent it in any way. The higher you tent the farther away the thumb keys are.
Initially I had wanted to tent it all the way for best blood flow throught the wrist (similar to why you’d want to have a vertical mouse), but that meant that one of the four keys for each thumb was not within reach and one was only reachable with quite some effort. Now I settled for a compromise: Slight tenting that allows me to reach all of the keys, but one of them only with great effort.