X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

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X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Uwe Brauer-2
Hello

I am still stunned about the brain damaged new keyboard design as seen in
the X1 first/second generation.[1]

This article does it express the facts very well
http://arstechnica.com/staff/2014/01/stop-trying-to-innovate-keyboards-youre-just-making-them-worse/

But I don't want to continue this rant but instead ask:

    -  as anybody tried to contact Lenovo concerning current models
       design and got an answer?

    -  is the X1 first generation (whose  keyboard is missing already six
       keys, but is not as disastrous as the one of the 2nd generation)
       still available somewhere?

In amazon for example it seems only the  2nd generation be available.

BTW what about the X230 or X240 do they suffer from the same bad
keyboard design?

regards

Uwe Brauer


Footnotes:
[1]  On the other hand the X1 has numerous advantages, larger screen,
     light, not as expensive as the X300.




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Re: X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Richard Neill-4
> I am still stunned about the brain damaged new keyboard design as seen in
> the X1 first/second generation.[1]

In my experience, the keyboard design is actually not so bad. It's not
ideal, but at least it's quite decently solid to type on. The keyboard
layout re-mapping is tolerable, though I do hate the e-ink Function keys
(they feel really sluggish to respond).

(The loss of SysRQ and PrtSc is not a big deal - they still exist as
chorded combinations. There is a win, in the shape of the Ctrl-key being
moved right to the bottom-left-corner, where Fn used to be, and at least
PgDn and PgUp (merged with arrow keys) are less dangerous than the
PgRight/PgLeft keys that they replace)

The think to absolutely hate is the ghastly buttonless clickpad. It's
truly dreadful, and cannot be fixed in software (there is no way to have
EmulateWheel). The clickpad is really hard to depress from the top edge;
I'm almost reaching the point of hacking the guts of a USB mouse and
some physical switches to replace it.

Richard

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SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

birger

I have had the gen 1 and currently have the gen 2.

The keyboard is a very good one physically. Especially when seeing how thin it is.

The layout changes take a little time getting used to. The biggest one is really the backspace key, as you are so used to it being further to the right. On the other hand that placement of the del key is logical. I use it more often now.

Caps lock was wasted space anyway. Double press on shift works just fine for me.

As said by Richard, the big bummer would be the trackpad-integrated mouse buttons on gen 2. I run on linux and can pretty much redesign the trackpad to my will. I can use 2 finger gestures to emulate the wheel, so i don't have that issue. But the borders between the buttons don't have any tactile feedback except the bumps at the center of the middle button. I too often press middle button when trying to get one of the others.

And what is this nonsense about burning firmware updates to cd and booting from external cd drive is the only supported way to upgrade bios? How about supporting USB stick, Lenovo? You may need a bios/firmware update to make the 3g modem work with linux.

Sendt fra min Sony Xperia™-smarttelefon



---- Richard Neill skrev ----

> I am still stunned about the brain damaged new keyboard design as seen in
> the X1 first/second generation.[1]

In my experience, the keyboard design is actually not so bad. It's not
ideal, but at least it's quite decently solid to type on. The keyboard
layout re-mapping is tolerable, though I do hate the e-ink Function keys
(they feel really sluggish to respond).

(The loss of SysRQ and PrtSc is not a big deal - they still exist as
chorded combinations. There is a win, in the shape of the Ctrl-key being
moved right to the bottom-left-corner, where Fn used to be, and at least
PgDn and PgUp (merged with arrow keys) are less dangerous than the
PgRight/PgLeft keys that they replace)

The think to absolutely hate is the ghastly buttonless clickpad. It's
truly dreadful, and cannot be fixed in software (there is no way to have
EmulateWheel). The clickpad is really hard to depress from the top edge;
I'm almost reaching the point of hacking the guts of a USB mouse and
some physical switches to replace it.

Richard

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Re: X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Uwe Brauer-2
In reply to this post by Richard Neill-4
>> "Richard" == Richard Neill <[hidden email]> writes:

   >> I am still stunned about the brain damaged new keyboard design as seen in
   >> the X1 first/second generation.[1]

   > In my experience, the keyboard design is actually not so bad. It's not
   > ideal, but at least it's quite decently solid to type on. The keyboard
   > layout re-mapping is tolerable, though I do hate the e-ink Function
   > keys (they feel really sluggish to respond).

   > (The loss of SysRQ and PrtSc is not a big deal - they still exist as
   > chorded combinations. There is a win, in the shape of the Ctrl-key
   > being moved right to the bottom-left-corner, where Fn used to be, and
   > at least PgDn and PgUp (merged with arrow keys) are less dangerous
   > than the PgRight/PgLeft keys that they replace)


I big to differ. I am using thinkpads for the last 12 years, and spent
95% of my time in (X)Emacs where I have bound all sort of lisp functions
to keys,
I switch control and capslock and then I use all sort of combinations
of Shift, or control or super (the win key) or hyper (the control key) +
Fn or print or insert etc. So loosing these keys is like learning a
completely new  and inferior  keyboard and frankly I don't see the
benefit. (As it is said in the article I cite)

While the X1 first generation is bad but not hopeless the same cannot be
said about the second generation which brings me back to my original
question is the X1 first generation still available?


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Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Uwe Brauer-2
In reply to this post by birger
>> "birger" == birger  <Birger> writes:

   > I have had the gen 1 and currently have the gen 2.

Do you know whether 1 gen is still available?

   > The keyboard is a very good one physically. Especially when seeing
   > how thin it is.

   > The layout changes take a little time getting used to. The biggest one
   > is really the backspace key, as you are so used to it being further to
   > the right. On the other hand that placement of the del key is logical.
   > I use it more often now.

So the have eliminated the del key? What for? What is the benefit of
removing keys.??


   > Caps lock was wasted space anyway. Double press on shift works just
   > fine for me.

I big to differ, I swap this key with the control key, which makes
control much easier to access and then may caps lock to the hyper
modifier (using this for lisp functions within Xemacs). So all this I
cannot use anymore, what a disaster. The benefit of a larger screen does
not compensate for the loss of the most basic tool, the keyboard. I
might end up buying second hand X300 or X200/61.

Uwe Brauer

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Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Robert Thau
Uwe Brauer writes:
 > I big to differ, I swap this key with the control key, which makes
 > control much easier to access and then may caps lock to the hyper
 > modifier (using this for lisp functions within Xemacs). So all this I
 > cannot use anymore, what a disaster. The benefit of a larger screen does
 > not compensate for the loss of the most basic tool, the keyboard. I
 > might end up buying second hand X300 or X200/61.

If secondhand is an option, you could also look for a secondhand
first-genration X1.  I certainly considered it, though I'm instead
going to be trying my luck with a Dell XPS 13 "developer edition"
(which basically means Ubuntu 12.04 preinstalled, with manufacturer-
supplied drivers for everything).

rst

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Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Gijs Hillenius-2
In reply to this post by Uwe Brauer-2
Gen 1, Bluelink.nl put 37 on sale yesterday @ 999 euro
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SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

birger
In reply to this post by Uwe Brauer-2

The del key has not been removed. It is located to the right of backspace. A logical placement, but takes some time getting used to.

Home and End are located where caps lock used to be. Can you use them for your key swapping?

Why remove keys? To get valuable real estate freed up by eliminating keys almost noone uses. For the few times people normally use caps lock a double touch on shift works just as well. But not for you, i can see that.

Sendt fra min Sony Xperia™-smarttelefon



---- Uwe Brauer skrev ----

>> "birger" == birger  <Birger> writes:

   > I have had the gen 1 and currently have the gen 2.

Do you know whether 1 gen is still available?

   > The keyboard is a very good one physically. Especially when seeing
   > how thin it is.

   > The layout changes take a little time getting used to. The biggest one
   > is really the backspace key, as you are so used to it being further to
   > the right. On the other hand that placement of the del key is logical.
   > I use it more often now.

So the have eliminated the del key? What for? What is the benefit of
removing keys.??


   > Caps lock was wasted space anyway. Double press on shift works just
   > fine for me.

I big to differ, I swap this key with the control key, which makes
control much easier to access and then may caps lock to the hyper
modifier (using this for lisp functions within Xemacs). So all this I
cannot use anymore, what a disaster. The benefit of a larger screen does
not compensate for the loss of the most basic tool, the keyboard. I
might end up buying second hand X<a href="tel:300">300 or X<a href="tel:200">200/61.

Uwe Brauer

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Re: SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Bjørn Mork
Birger <[hidden email]> writes:

> The del key has not been removed. It is located to the right of backspace . A logical placement, but takes some time getting used to.
>
> Home and End are located where caps lock used to be. Can you use them for your key swapping?
>
> Why remove keys? To get valuable real estate freed up by eliminating
> keys almost noone uses.

The space is not used for anything *I* value.  It's abused by an
insanely large clickpad.

Why can't laptops focus on proper keyboards instead?  There is no lack
of touch based devices.  They are nice toys.  But to me, and all(?)
Thinkpad users I know, the primary reason to use a laptop instead of
some "pad" is the keyboard.  The secondary reason is the mouse buttons.
A laptop with neither is pretty pointless (pun intended).

Heck, you can even get a touch screen on modern laptops if you really
want the large touch area.  There is no reason to add a monster clickpad
as well. What you cannot get today is a proper keyboard. Or mouse
buttons. Why?

I know I don't understand marketing people.  I really don't.  They have
failed to create a new market for "pads", so then they change laptops to
be just as useless as any "pad"?  What's the point of that?

But instead of taking feedback from the market, design leading vendors
like Sony just give up making laptops...  Crazy. A good business laptop
does not need to be as cheap as a toy pad. But if you merge the products
into one, then of course you'll have problems making people pay the
business laptop price for the toy products.  What did you think?

No, I *really* do not understand marketing people. It's not just the
fact that they are insane.  It's the crowd insanity that strikes me as
strange. It's like watching lemmings in a "lemming year".  2014 was
the year of the clickpad, after which the laptop vendor population
nearly vanished?


Bjørn (hoping that the - once extremely expensive - X301 won't die until
some laptop vendor wakes up and smells the fish)
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Re: SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Tamas Papp-2
On Sat, Sep 20 2014, Bjørn Mork <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Why can't laptops focus on proper keyboards instead?  There is no lack
> of touch based devices.  They are nice toys.  But to me, and all(?)
> Thinkpad users I know, the primary reason to use a laptop instead of
> some "pad" is the keyboard.  The secondary reason is the mouse buttons.
> A laptop with neither is pretty pointless (pun intended).
>
> Heck, you can even get a touch screen on modern laptops if you really
> want the large touch area.  There is no reason to add a monster clickpad
> as well. What you cannot get today is a proper keyboard. Or mouse
> buttons. Why?

Hi Bjørn,

Fads like this come and go, so hopefully this will pass, too. In the
meantime, various vendors still make reasonable "business" laptops, eg I
have seen nice Dells, and I am sure there are others. I also lament the
loss of classic Thinkpad features, but if this trend persists with
Lenovo you should be able to find alternatives.

Best,

Tamas
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Re: X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Ben Bacarisse
In reply to this post by Uwe Brauer-2
Uwe Brauer <[hidden email]> writes:

>>> "Richard" == Richard Neill <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>    >> I am still stunned about the brain damaged new keyboard design as seen in
>    >> the X1 first/second generation.[1]
>
>    > In my experience, the keyboard design is actually not so bad. It's not
>    > ideal, but at least it's quite decently solid to type on. The keyboard
>    > layout re-mapping is tolerable, though I do hate the e-ink Function
>    > keys (they feel really sluggish to respond).
>
>    > (The loss of SysRQ and PrtSc is not a big deal - they still exist as
>    > chorded combinations. There is a win, in the shape of the Ctrl-key
>    > being moved right to the bottom-left-corner, where Fn used to be, and
>    > at least PgDn and PgUp (merged with arrow keys) are less dangerous
>    > than the PgRight/PgLeft keys that they replace)
>
> I big to differ. I am using thinkpads for the last 12 years, and spent
> 95% of my time in (X)Emacs where I have bound all sort of lisp functions
> to keys,

Ack.  The keys some people call wasted space are, to me, a valuable
resource!  I used to have Menu, Scroll Lock, Pause, Back and Forward
bound to useful things.  On my latest ThinkPad I am left with only Caps
Lock, Fn and PrtSc and it looks like some of these are on the way out.
As keys get removed I am left with a less functional machine.

And does the fact that the right-hand Alt in picture in the linked
article is not marked AltGr mean that it is, indeed, no longer AltGr?  I
like and use AltGr too!

<snip>
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Re: SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Uwe Brauer-2
In reply to this post by birger
>> "birger" == birger  <Birger> writes:

   > The del key has not been removed. It is located to the right of
   > backspace. A logical placement, but takes some time getting used to.

   > Home and End are located where caps lock used to be. Can you use them
   > for your key swapping?



   > Why remove keys? To get valuable real estate freed up by eliminating
   > keys almost noone uses.

As it is said in the article whose link I provided, once you have set a
keyboard, qwerty or dvorak or whatsovever don't mess with it!!
Don't replace or remove keys since this makes lifes for those who are
acquainted with "blind" typing, miserable.

Improve screens hard disk, batteries life RAM, but leave the keyboard
distribution in peace.  

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Re: SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Uwe Brauer-2
In reply to this post by Bjørn Mork

   > Birger <[hidden email]> writes:

   > The space is not used for anything *I* value.  It's abused by an
   > insanely large clickpad.

   > Why can't laptops focus on proper keyboards instead?  There is no lack
   > of touch based devices.  They are nice toys.  But to me, and all(?)
   > Thinkpad users I know, the primary reason to use a laptop instead of
   > some "pad" is the keyboard.  The secondary reason is the mouse buttons.
   > A laptop with neither is pretty pointless (pun intended).

I agree completely!!!
 

[snip]



   > Bjørn (hoping that the - once extremely expensive - X301 won't die until
   > some laptop vendor wakes up and smells the fish)

What do you mean "X301[1] won't die"? Is it still available?? I only saw
it second hand used in the net.

Footnotes:
[1]  which was always my dream, but too expensive. I hoped that the X1
     could be an replacement, but alas it can't.


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SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

birger
In reply to this post by Ben Bacarisse

It is marked as and works as alt gr on the norwegian layout.

Sendt fra min Sony Xperia™-smarttelefon



---- Ben Bacarisse skrev ----

Uwe Brauer <[hidden email]> writes:

>>> "Richard" == Richard Neill <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>    >> I am still stunned about the brain damaged new keyboard design as seen in
>    >> the X1 first/second generation.[1]
>
>    > In my experience, the keyboard design is actually not so bad. It's not
>    > ideal, but at least it's quite decently solid to type on. The keyboard
>    > layout re-mapping is tolerable, though I do hate the e-ink Function
>    > keys (they feel really sluggish to respond).
>
>    > (The loss of SysRQ and PrtSc is not a big deal - they still exist as
>    > chorded combinations. There is a win, in the shape of the Ctrl-key
>    > being moved right to the bottom-left-corner, where Fn used to be, and
>    > at least PgDn and PgUp (merged with arrow keys) are less dangerous
>    > than the PgRight/PgLeft keys that they replace)
>
> I big to differ. I am using thinkpads for the last 12 years, and spent
> 95% of my time in (X)Emacs where I have bound all sort of lisp functions
> to keys,

Ack.  The keys some people call wasted space are, to me, a valuable
resource!  I used to have Menu, Scroll Lock, Pause, Back and Forward
bound to useful things.  On my latest ThinkPad I am left with only Caps
Lock, Fn and PrtSc and it looks like some of these are on the way out.
As keys get removed I am left with a less functional machine.

And does the fact that the right-hand Alt in picture in the linked
article is not marked AltGr mean that it is, indeed, no longer AltGr?  I
like and use AltGr too!

<snip>
--
Ben.
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SV: Re: SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

birger
In reply to this post by Bjørn Mork

One of the things i loved about the 1st gen x1 was exactly the trackpad. I use the trackpoint for mouse movement, and the pad for gestures (like scrolling).

The x1 is the first pc to match the feel and sensivity of the mac trackpads.

The 2. Gen trackpad is just as good, but the integrated mouse buttons suck.

I do understand that hard core emacs users need lots of keys. I am a vi user myself, so that need does not apply as much to me.

And perhaps will you soon be able to reconfigure the function key strip automatically within emacs?

Sendt fra min Sony Xperia™-smarttelefon



---- Bjørn Mork skrev ----

Birger <[hidden email]> writes:

> The del key has not been removed. It is located to the right of backspace. A logical placement, but takes some time getting used to.
>
> Home and End are located where caps lock used to be. Can you use them for your key swapping?
>
> Why remove keys? To get valuable real estate freed up by eliminating
> keys almost noone uses.

The space is not used for anything *I* value.  It's abused by an
insanely large clickpad.

Why can't laptops focus on proper keyboards instead?  There is no lack
of touch based devices.  They are nice toys.  But to me, and all(?)
Thinkpad users I know, the primary reason to use a laptop instead of
some "pad" is the keyboard.  The secondary reason is the mouse buttons.
A laptop with neither is pretty pointless (pun intended).

Heck, you can even get a touch screen on modern laptops if you really
want the large touch area.  There is no reason to add a monster clickpad
as well. What you cannot get today is a proper keyboard. Or mouse
buttons. Why?

I know I don't understand marketing people.  I really don't.  They have
failed to create a new market for "pads", so then they change laptops to
be just as useless as any "pad"?  What's the point of that?

But instead of taking feedback from the market, design leading vendors
like Sony just give up making laptops...  Crazy. A good business laptop
does not need to be as cheap as a toy pad. But if you merge the products
into one, then of course you'll have problems making people pay the
business laptop price for the toy products.  What did you think?

No, I *really* do not understand marketing people. It's not just the
fact that they are insane.  It's the crowd insanity that strikes me as
strange. It's like watching lemmings in a "lemming year".  <a href="tel:2014">2014 was
the year of the clickpad, after which the laptop vendor population
nearly vanished?


Bjørn (hoping that the - once extremely expensive - X<a href="tel:301">301 won't die until
some laptop vendor wakes up and smells the fish)
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Re: SV: Re: SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Bjørn Mork
In reply to this post by Uwe Brauer-2
Uwe Brauer <[hidden email]> writes:

>    > Bjørn (hoping that the - once extremely expensive - X301 won't die until
>    > some laptop vendor wakes up and smells the fish)
>
> What do you mean "X301[1] won't die"? Is it still available?? I only saw
> it second hand used in the net.
>
> Footnotes:
> [1]  which was always my dream, but too expensive. I hoped that the X1
>      could be an replacement, but alas it can't.

I was referring to the specific X301 I am using right now, not the model
as such.  Sorry about the confusion.  I got it in January 2009 after
convincing my boss that it was worth the price :-)


Bjørn
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Re: X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Vivek Dasmohapatra-2
In reply to this post by Uwe Brauer-2
>    -  as anybody tried to contact Lenovo concerning current models
>       design and got an answer?

They've responded (unofficially) here - the gist is that they're not
planning to restore any of the good stuff about the old(er) thinkpads
in any upcoming models.

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Re: X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

Uwe Brauer-2
>> "Vivek" == Vivek Dasmohapatra <[hidden email]> writes:

   >> -  As anybody tried to contact Lenovo concerning current models
   >> design and got an answer?

   > They've responded (unofficially) here - the gist is that they're not
   > planning to restore any of the good stuff about the old(er) thinkpads
   > in any upcoming models.


Now that that is interesting, what was their argument? They know better
than the users themselves what is good for them?

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[off-list] (was: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design)

Uwe Brauer-2
In reply to this post by Vivek Dasmohapatra-2
>> "Vivek" == Vivek Dasmohapatra <[hidden email]> writes:

   >> -  As anybody tried to contact Lenovo concerning current models
   >> design and got an answer?

   > They've responded (unofficially) here - the gist is that they're not
   > planning to restore any of the good stuff about the old(er) thinkpads
   > in any upcoming models.

Could you provide me with some email addresses of these persons, I would
like to contact them off list.

thanks

Uwe Brauer

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SV: Re: [ltp] X1 firs/second generation, X230 or X240 new keyboard design

birger
In reply to this post by Uwe Brauer-2

I guess it is the same as the transition to the new style island keys. A lot of noise from a few users, but the majority actually liked them better.

We have quite a few journalists and ad designers using the x1, and i have yet to hear a complaint from them about the keyboard layout. The touch strip gets some comments, and the integrated mouse buttons in the trackpad get a few more. If that is representative of the feedback lenovo gets then those actively wanting the old layout back are a small minority. Lenovo probably think it makes sense to keep the new layout even if a few customers switch to other brands or buy other models.

Sendt fra min Sony Xperia™-smarttelefon



---- Uwe Brauer skrev ----

>> "Vivek" == Vivek Dasmohapatra <[hidden email]> writes:

   >> -  As anybody tried to contact Lenovo concerning current models
   >> design and got an answer?

   > They've responded (unofficially) here - the gist is that they're not
   > planning to restore any of the good stuff about the old(er) thinkpads
   > in any upcoming models.


Now that that is interesting, what was their argument? They know better
than the users themselves what is good for them?

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