Products & Reviews
Case or Keyboard?
Wed Apr 3, 2002 - 11:57 AM EST - By
Table of Contents
Q-Pad » Keyboard Usability Conclusion
Keyboard Usability Using
the keyboard took a little getting used to, but after a while I can definitely
type faster than I can write using Graffiti. As in past reviews, the main
problem with these small keyboards are key size. It doesn’t matter whether it is
this Q-Pad or the Thumboard from Seiko, the keys are all tiny. This causes you
to hit the wrong key sometimes, or not press the key down enough if you are
being overly cautious. The most common error I made was not pressing the space
key down enough causing thewords tobe connectedtogether.
Most of the keys are quite self-evident such as, “K” or “SHIFT,” but a few
requite some explaining. The “AE up” and “AE down” keys move to the next or
prior field in the document you are working in. The Long Right Arrow to the
right of the number pad is the TAB key. The Left long arrow below it is the
DELETE key. Most of the symbols are found on the number pad and are accessed
using the SHIFT key. For example, SHIFT 2 = @. Other than that, typing with the
keyboard is pretty obvious to the user and doesn’t take long to learn.
The only other function (other than typing) is use of the number pad in the
calculator program. I really like this feature, the number pad is great. I use
my Visor more than my calculator at my desk now because the number pad makes
using the Visor’s more advanced calculation functions much easier, and data
input is faster also.
Again, most of the calculator keys are self-evident as well; however there are
some tricky ones not mentioned anywhere. To clear the calculator, press “C” on
the keyboard. To clear just the entry, press the delete button on the keyboard
until all the numbers have been erased. “E” on the keyboard is used for
exponents, and “S” is used for negative numbers although the same effect can be
derived from the “-“symbol to the right of the subtraction sign.
is the best way to use this keyboard? Well, it depends on where you are. If you
are standing up, hold the Edge in one hand; support the keyboard with the other
any type using your thumb. This method is the slowest because you are only
typing with one finger, but is the best for quick data entry. If you are at a
desk/table/hard surface: support the Edge with the stand and type using both
index fingers. However, my recommendation, is to let the keyboard part hang off
the edge of the table and use your thumbs to type, this is the quickest method
to me; look at the picture for a better explanation.
The Q-Pad comes with a disk containing the software driver for the keyboard.
Just copy the PRC file into your add-on folder in your Palm Desktop and Hot-Sync
the Edge. This will create a Key-Pad icon in your Launcher.
The program is the settings program for the keyboard and contains all the
variable for the Q-Pad’s operation. Here, you are able to change the key repeat
rate, the delay until repeat rate, and you may enable/disable an audio beep for
when you type. There is also a option to enable and disable the Q-Pad, so if you
don’t want to use the keyboard for some reason, just un-check the box. Conclusion >>