Get the PITCHFORK key ready! Microsoft intends to molest the keyboard layouts again.

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depletedvespene

25 Jun 2019, 16:57

I just found about this on GH and now I gotta share with you, because misery loves company.

According to OS News, Microsoft is considering a dedicated Office key for keyboards.

Let me stress that the kind of application-dependent functionality that Microsoft intends this dedicated key for... is what the F row was created for in the first place. This is the kind of shenanigans that '90s Microsoft pulled... and though they say they've abandoned their underhanded tactics, they're seemingly are still very much an integral part of their bag o'tricks.

FFS.

Where is the SMITE key when we truly need it?

Fkazim

25 Jun 2019, 17:18

Luckily I'm fine as I don't have a windows key on my keyboard.

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Polecat

25 Jun 2019, 17:51

Well they shot down Microsoft Palladium, which was a hell of a lot more insidious, so maybe this will just die on the vine? If Billy's mom had let him play with the other kids we wouldn't have this kind of bullshit.

andrewjoy

25 Jun 2019, 18:14

They have two windows keys two shift keys who control keys ( that all send different scancodes) a menu key and 12 bloody F keys.

If they cannot program proper keyboard navigation with that then they need to give up and go home.

I would however be all for F13 to F24 becoming standard !

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depletedvespene

25 Jun 2019, 18:19

Polecat wrote:
25 Jun 2019, 17:51
Well they shot down Microsoft Palladium, which was a hell of a lot more insidious, so maybe this will just die on the vine? If Billy's mom had let him play with the other kids we wouldn't have this kind of bullshit.
Well, SOMETIMES Micro$oft does back out of stuff they force onto the users ("Clippy", anyone?)... but abandoned software can be made to disappear entirely, while abandoning hardware is rather more difficult.

IF MS does force this on us, via OEMs, even if it later recants, we'll have to deal with the fall-out from this disgraceful key. It's bad enough to deal with "winkey" vs. "winkeyless" keyboards... but then also add "officekey" vs. "OKL" layouts? And where would they put this intended "Office" key, anyway? In the bottom row? Or would they pull a DK Saver, forcing it between F12 and Pause?

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depletedvespene

25 Jun 2019, 18:23

andrewjoy wrote:
25 Jun 2019, 18:14
They have two windows keys two shift keys who control keys ( that all send different scancodes) a menu key and 12 bloody F keys.

If they cannot program proper keyboard navigation with that then they need to give up and go home.

I would however be all for F13 to F24 becoming standard !
That, or at least recover EF1..EF10. Dedicated Undo, Redo, Cut, Copy, Paste keys in the second column there doesn't actually sound like a bad idea.

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zrrion

25 Jun 2019, 19:26

There's already dedicated wake/sleep/power keys and media keys, my guess is that an office key won't be implemented at all but if it is it'll be on an f key like the media keys are on some laptops.

Findecanor

25 Jun 2019, 21:31

I think the right way for Microsoft now to do it would be either:
  1. Bundle the new Office Keyboard only in a package with Microsoft Office, or:
  2. Bundle Microsoft Office with a utility that would remap an existing key, say the Menu key to the Office modifier key, if the user chooses to enable it, or:
  3. Make the key enable a layer with existing unused key codes in the USB HID "Consumer" page for "AL Word processor", "AL Spreadsheet", "AL Presentation App" etc and allow the user to configure which apps that these codes would launch.
Any other scheme I can think of would be abusing their position on the Windows platform, and should be considered a violation of antitrust laws.
depletedvespene wrote:
25 Jun 2019, 18:19
And where would they put this intended "Office" key, anyway? In the bottom row?
Yes. The news about the key originates in this tweet by WalkingCat. It shows an image of the Office key concept as a key inserted in-between right Alt and Windows keys, thus stealing space from the Space Bar

Microsoft had been asking test users for feedback about the key, on prototype keyboards.
I think that Microsoft would have got so much negative press and reactions all over the Internet at this point, that they should have cancelled this.

dharmi

26 Jun 2019, 12:21

I don't think you understand how a bureaucratic, top down, conservative, business oriented system works.

Microsoft doesn't care about voting and public opinion like in a democracy. They are among the most Chinese of American firms, in the sense that decisionmaking is more akin to the PRC than to the USA. The nine or so members of China's Politburo have votes, and they outvote one billion people.

Even if Microsoft got one billion negative responses from individuals like you and me, if their nine biggest business partners like Dell agreed to building keyboards with the office key, they would go with their business partners.

Luckily Microsoft keeps losing market share. Linux is getting more common. Open Office is good. We can live without Microsoft and its pathetic products.

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depletedvespene

26 Jun 2019, 12:26

dharmi wrote:
26 Jun 2019, 12:21
I don't think you understand how a bureaucratic, top down, conservative, business oriented system works.
Oh, yeah, we do. We already back in the 90s called Microsoft "maoist" for their shameless repetition of their own dogma as if it were the reality.

It was actually not fun to see that moniker resurrected when Windows 8 came out, because it showed MS had NOT learned the error of its ways.

dharmi

26 Jun 2019, 15:10

depletedvespene wrote:
26 Jun 2019, 12:26
dharmi wrote:
26 Jun 2019, 12:21
I don't think you understand how a bureaucratic, top down, conservative, business oriented system works.
Oh, yeah, we do. We already back in the 90s called Microsoft "maoist" for their shameless repetition of their own dogma as if it were the reality.

It was actually not fun to see that moniker resurrected when Windows 8 came out, because it showed MS had NOT learned the error of its ways.
The Chinese Communist Party hasn't changed at all. Why should Windows? Every new iteration of Windows, every new 'upgrade' or 'update', has been forced on us with minimal reference to our preferences.

For business purposes, I was repeatedly offered a Windows phone or laptop or tablet in the past 10 years. Free stuff, IF I did something else such as purchasing X or ordering Y. I never took up a single one of these offers and have no regrets. Free Windows devices usually are of minimal use.

andrewjoy

26 Jun 2019, 18:26

dharmi wrote:
26 Jun 2019, 15:10


For business purposes, I was repeatedly offered a Windows phone or laptop or tablet in the past 10 years. Free stuff, IF I did something else such as purchasing X or ordering Y. I never took up a single one of these offers and have no regrets. Free Windows devices usually are of minimal use.
Paying for stuff only goes so far.

When things get to the point where even if you get paid to use something its going to cost you more in other areas, you wont take the money. If its a close call and product A is 10% behind product B and you get paid by product A to use it , you will use it. But when product A is 100% behind product B they wont be able to pay you enough to use it.

Example

Cattus_D

27 Jun 2019, 00:21

andrewjoy wrote:
26 Jun 2019, 18:26
dharmi wrote:
26 Jun 2019, 15:10


For business purposes, I was repeatedly offered a Windows phone or laptop or tablet in the past 10 years. Free stuff, IF I did something else such as purchasing X or ordering Y. I never took up a single one of these offers and have no regrets. Free Windows devices usually are of minimal use.
Paying for stuff only goes so far.

When things get to the point where even if you get paid to use something its going to cost you more in other areas, you wont take the money. If its a close call and product A is 10% behind product B and you get paid by product A to use it , you will use it. But when product A is 100% behind product B they wont be able to pay you enough to use it.

Example
Windows phones are excellent, actually. The interface is superior to that of the iPhone and that of the few Android phones I have experience with. I am still using two Windows phones now (Lumia 1020 and Lumia 950). Unfortunately, they will soon be replaced by a new Nokia Android phone because some of the software I require is no longer available on the Windows phone platform.

Back on topic: I think the proposal to add another button is a bit silly - and rather MS-centric.

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vometia
irritant

02 Jul 2019, 13:04

Hmm, that's a point, I wonder if there's such a thing as a minimum-height, non-moving MX-compatible keycap that can be used to replace those stupid Windows keys and return the useful hand-positioning gaps for those of us who don't touch-type? I'm not even sure what to search for. :/

Lanrefni

02 Jul 2019, 14:13

vometia wrote:
02 Jul 2019, 13:04
Hmm, that's a point, I wonder if there's such a thing as a minimum-height, non-moving MX-compatible keycap that can be used to replace those stupid Windows keys and return the useful hand-positioning gaps for those of us who don't touch-type? I'm not even sure what to search for. :/
You're looking for switch blockers,X-keys and PMK are both pretty cheap options.

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vometia
irritant

02 Jul 2019, 17:07

Lanrefni wrote:
02 Jul 2019, 14:13
You're looking for switch blockers,X-keys and PMK are both pretty cheap options.
Awesome! Thank you. Seems so obvious... after someone else points it out to me. :D

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