Towards a better Sculpt ergonomic keyboard

I love my Sculpt ergonomic keyboard. It’s a great product. But it can be made even better by customizing it for one’s particular needs and preferences.

My two main problems were:

Someone on Reddit mentioned SharpKeys - a nice free little tool to logically rearrange keys on a keyboard(remapping). I checked it out and really liked what I saw: in contrast to other programs like AutoHotKey, SharpKeys is basically just a nice user interface to a very nasty key in the registry. This means no extra processes slowing your startup time, eating up your memory, etc.

I gave it at quick try and was satisfied with the result.

The I physically rearranged the keys on the keyboard like so:

it was very easy, with practically no risk

This placement feels a lot more natural to me:

Then I decided to do something about the lack of media keys.

I remapped Insert to Play/Pause. The great thing is that Media Player Classic, Windows Media Player and XBox Music will respond to this key even if they are not the active application.

I remapped PrtScn to Volume up and ScrLk to Volume down.

I tried to remap Pause to Volume down, to keep the Print Screen functionality that I use occasionally but it shows up as Num lock in SharpKeys (wtf?).

For some reason Microsoft decided to include not one, but two Calculator buttons - one on the keyboard proper and one on the separate NumPad.

Side by side Before / After

Happy customizing!

P.s. There is a small caveat with this approach - the remapping is on the operating system level, not on a per-keyboard basis. This can be worked around by backing up the relevant registry key and then deleting all the mappings. The aforementioned key is located at [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Keyboard Layout]

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26 March 2015


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