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Old 03-17-2009, 12:05 AM   #1
Registered: Aug 2008
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Making the best of your keyboard (xmodmap'ing and other related things)


One of the the advantages always listed in "vim pros and cons" is that you're always close to the home row ... except when you have to hit the ESC key to exit out of insert mode. I was thinking the best solution to this would be to map the Caps Lock key to ESC (as the Caps Lock key is seldom used anyway). That was until I found out Ctrl + [ in vim can also get you out of the insert mode.

After some thinking, I've xmodmap'd the Compose key to the Menu key, and the left Alt key to ESC (because I use ESC in bash often).

Anyway, I was wondering -- could you guys share some of the modifications (whatever they be) you've made to optimize keyboard-related tasks?


Last edited by wheeliee; 03-17-2009 at 12:10 AM.
Old 03-17-2009, 12:43 AM   #2
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Enter :help map.txt for the help pages on mapping the keys for vim instead of globally.

For the caps lock key, I don't know if that is possible as it may not produce a code.

Also look at the shell built in command 'bind'.
You could use it in a wrapper to call vim. Many of the functions have have vi- in there name but are not bound to any keys. I wonder if vim uses these bindings if they exist, or if these are just used by bash in the vi mode.

Last edited by jschiwal; 03-17-2009 at 01:02 AM.
Old 03-19-2009, 12:26 AM   #3
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Food for thought.
The ESC key used to be where the Tab key is now.

caps lock actually is better for typing long strings of caps. This is both quicker than properly alternating shift keys for each letter and because it keeps you from the bad habit of holding down the shift with one pinkie and attempting to type the rest of the word.

I would think that most people don't use both Backspace and Delete the same or attempt to make them have the same functionality so this may be a good candidate.

Probably the easiest thing to do is change your xmodmap and what not to force your caps lock to be escape.


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