I’ve got this piece of cardboard on my keyboard.

It’s the endless drive to improve my writing environment and I’ve been looking at the keyboard.  It’s strange that I’ve seen buttons and thought, why don’t I use that.  I found this piece of software called AutoHotKey.  It’s free and it’s here:

You can use it to change any key to any other key or sequence of keypresses.  My Logitech K350 keyboard has 12 function keys that I just don’t use when writing, so I thought I’d repurpose them.  (I do use them when programming, so this might prove an own goal later.)

So, F1 is now Ctrl-Alt-W, which is the code to bring up Wordweb.  The F1 key has a big ‘W’ printed on it, so that makes really good sense.  Then double quotes to avoid the awful strain of Shift-2, then Ctrl-F for find… etc.  I’ve even added Copy and Paste in F8 and F9.  This means I can highlight text with the mouse and easily copy, cut (with delete) and paste without straining my little finger.

Not all of these work, particularly the double-quotes.  Perhaps I should add ‘yet’ as there’s an unlearning/learning process.  I thought about swapping the ‘@’ and double-quote around.  This is the US keyboard arrangement and it makes much more sense.  Single quote shifted is a double quote, after all.  (However, my partner did some typing on my keyboard and, of course, couldn’t find the ‘’@’ and neither could I when typing this sentence.)  In the end, I used F4, which on the Logitech K350 has an ‘a’ printed on it, for the ‘@’.

Here’s my autohotkey script, which is a few technical lines and then the list of my definitions, so far:-

#NoEnv  ; Recommended for performance and compatibility with future AutoHotkey releases.
; #Warn  ; Enable warnings to assist with detecting common errors.
SendMode Input  ; Recommended for new scripts due to its superior speed and reliability.
SetWorkingDir %A_ScriptDir%  ; Ensures a consistent starting directory.
f1:send, ^!w
f2::send, "
f3::send, ^f
f4::send, @
f8::send, ^c
f9::send, ^v
f11::send, Cheers,{enter}David.{enter}

That’s it, except I need to repaint the keycaps or just update my piece of cardboard that tells me what’s is what.

Would I recommend this?  Yes, I think I would.

Now, to finish with a return and an f11.




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