Sunday, November 22, 2009

On gaming on n900 and the newly found lack of arrow keys

Everybody who has seen the n900 with english/generic keyboard thinks all keyboards will have arrow keys. Well, they don't. And this sucks big time for any gaming applications, as they cannot assume that keyboard has specific direction keys that would actually work. In most of the keyboards, there are only left and right keys. While up and down are behind fn+left/right.

Only thing we can really do to fix this 'great kb layout design' is in my opinion:
Forget that we ever even had the arrow keys and start using the usual WASD combo for the default direction controls. And to balance the AB,XY buttons, we should probably use the I,O,K,L buttons. All of these buttons are the same in all kb layouts that I know. This is a pretty balanced layout, but again, not so easy to discover. Grr.. I hate the kb layout mistake that we made. Sane solution would have been to move the extra letters behind fn key.

Otoh, I have finnish kb on the device, but I have switched to english layout so that I can have a sane d keys on the device. But it feels confusing.

On a whole different note, I just read an interesing articles on DUI, the UI frameworks of Harmattan written by Zchydem:

Part one:
Part two:

I'm eagerly waiting for part three.

We are also preparing for a small update for the N900 owners to come really soon, which is going to keep me busy next week in preparation of it. Let's see when we can deliver it to you guys. After we have released that, I'll start blogging a bit more on what is up for the end of the year update and what is brewing for the other near future updates.