08-13-13 - Kinesis Freestyle 2 Mini Review

Aaron got a KF2 so I tried it out. Very quick review :

(on the right side I've failed to circle the Shift and Control keys which are perhaps the worst part)

The key action is not awesome but is totally acceptable. It would not stop me from using it.

Even in brief testing I could feel that having my hands further apart was pretty cool. Getting your elbows back tucked into your ribs with forearms externally rotated helps reduce the way that normal computer use posture has the weight of the arms collapsing the chest, causing kyphosis.

The fact that it sits flat and is totally old-skool keyboard style is pretty retarded. Who is buying an ergonomic split keyboard that wants a keyboard that could have been made in the 80's ? You need to start from a shape like the MS Natural and *then* cut it in half and split it. You don't start with a keyboard that came on your Packard Bell BBS-hosting 8086 machine. In other words, each half should have a curve and should be lifted and tilted. (the thumbs should be much higher than the pinkies).

(ideally each half should sit on something like a really nice high-friction camera tripod mount, so that you can adjust the tilt to any angle you want; the perfectly-flat or perflect-vertical is no good).

The real absolute no-go killer is the fucking retarded arrow key layout. It's not a fucking laptop (and even on a laptop there's no excuse for that). What are you thinking? There is *one* way to do arrow keys and the pgup/home set, you do not change that. Also cramming the arrows in there makes the shift key too small and puts the right-control in the wrong place. Totally unnaceptable, why are they trying so hard to save on plastic? There should be a normal proper offset arrow key set over on the right side.

And get rid of all those custom-function buttons on the left side. They serve no purpose, and negatively move my left-hand-mouse out further left than it needs to be.

Why is everyone but me so retarded? Why am I not hired to design every product in the world? Clearly no one else is capable. Sheesh.


Aaron said...

Hahah. Yeah, X WTF pretty much sums up my experience with it too.

You can buy little standy things that attach to it to prop it up into the proper ms natural shape.

Lots of us know the right(ish) way to do things. We're just too lazy to actually go build anything. There's a kickstarter for fancy programmable keyboards: http://launch.keyboard.io/

Of course, there's no frickin' information.

Wolfie said...

You are quite right.

I make do with a qpad gamer keyboard, the keys are so illuminated I can see them across the room and the action is nice.

OK not the perfection you seek but it does the job.

Blaine Allen Brown said...

I've never understood curved keyboard design. Ergonomic for a keyboard simply means not making the same motions all the time. With a curved keyboard you switch up how you move slightly--until you get used to it. You're still going to get repetitive stress from a curved keyboard if you use it for years and make the same motions over and over. What you really need is a keyboard that changes its shape all the time, and no one makes anything like that.

cbloom said...

Well Blaine, I certainly agree that changing position is crucial. However that doesn't mean that you just throw out considerations of natural positioning and resting position strain and so on.

old rants