I finally got my an ergonomic keyboard, Art AK-43E. It’s not exactly the Microsoft Natural, but it resembles it a lot. The main difference (except for used colors) is that MN is much heavier than mine. Heavy objects are often considered to be more solid than light objects. Although this classification rule is often correct, it doesn’t necessarily have to be true every time.
There is one strange thing. On standard keyboards, there are six keys between the main section and the numpad. Home, end, page up, page down, insert and delete. On my keyboard, the last two are merged into one big key. But how does computer know which une you want to use? Well, there is another key (named F Lock, similar to the trendy web browser), which switches the merged key’s function between insert and delete. So I have two keys for two functions (that’s obvious). But I can’t just use one key per function. I have to use one key to choose the function and another one to trigger.
Extending this idea, I could type with just two keys. One would be used to choose one from 26 Latin letters and another one to trigger. A bad idea? Not quite different from the idea of merging insert and delete.
Keyboard has an USB connector with USB/PS2 adapter. Since I’m running out of USB ports in my PC, I use the latter. There are many additional keys on this keyboard. I think I’ll use xbind to map them to some useful functions, like: eject a CD, open mail, turn the monitor off, play/stop the music, adjust music volume, switch to headphones, switch to speakers, etc.
And last, but not least, there is nothing more but a shadow of any pain in my wrists.
UPDATE: I use this keyboard no more, in favor of the Microsoft Multimedia Natural. The ART keyboard was annoying becuase I couldn’t use F1-F12 and the DELETE key at the same time. Crappy functional design.