You are using the BF-keys wrong

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by ficktjuv, Dec 15, 2018.

  1. ficktjuv, Dec 15, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2018

    ficktjuv macrumors newbie

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    Oct 10, 2013
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    Stockholm, Sweden
    #1
    I've been using computers for a good 30 yrs now and I have never been that fast at typing. I've been alright but never that extremely fast until....

    I bought this 2018 mbp and at first I didnt really like the keyboard cause of the low keytravel, but after a while something happened. Now I cant use another keyboard. I type so fast I cant believe it.

    Thing is. With this keyb youre not suppose to 'click' the button old style. Youre suppose to push the buttons like you push a mouse-button, just a gentle tap.

    Previously my hands went all over the place, but now my hands are more like crabs. My fingers are all over the keyboard and I use every finger to press different buttons. Just gently press them like you would a mouse-button.

    If you lift your fingers and press the buttons from 'above' youre doing it wrong. Your finger should already be resting on the key you want to press in advance and just give it a little 'tap'. I know it might sound corny, but treat the keyboard like a lady. Let your fingers rest gently on the keys and just let them travel back and forth in advance when typing, just giving them a gentle push.

    Its really hard to explain but when used to this kind of keyboard I cannot go back to some old school mechanical keyb with travel. I'm just to slow at typing at those compared to these.

    What are your experience, have you also done a 180 in typing-style after using the BF-keyb for extended time?
     
  2. puma1552 Suspended

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2008
    #2
    you know, i prefer keyboards where i dont have to consciously think about how im using it and treat it like a family heirloom
     
  3. ficktjuv thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    dont get me wrong. I did not think at all about this. It just happened naturally for me. What I am trying to describ is what I noticed after I got used to it after a while. It's nothing special, just different. And aboslutely nothing I think about consciously
     
  4. Sterkenburg macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2016
    #4
    Not really. I adapted my typing style to the BF keyboard when using my MBP on the go (and I admit I find the 2018 version pretty pleasant to use, much improved over the 2016 which I hated), but for serious typing I'd take a good mechanical keyboard anyday.

    The problem with these keyboards is not the feel, it's the long-term reliability concerns that come with them. I'd very much like not to have to baby a $4k computer to make sure it doesn't crap out while working.
     
  5. SDColorado Contributor

    SDColorado

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    Nov 6, 2011
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    Highlands Ranch, CO
    #5
    I used a 2016 MBP for a couple of years and hated it for a couple of years. I never "learned to like it" or "got used to it" or whatever people say you are supposed to do. I have had a number of 2018 models to, and while I admit they have a *slight* improvement in feel, it isn't significant imho.

    I don't feel I am "using it wrong," there shouldn't be a wrong way to use a properly designed keyboard. You shouldn't have to "get used to it" or adjust the way you type to the keyboard. I think Apple is "designing it wrong." Just my .2
     
  6. JustinBW macrumors member

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    Oct 5, 2009
    #6
    The same thing with me, except I gave it much less time than you. I went back to a 2015 model. My experience on the "new" keyboard was so poor that I told myself I would not get another Apple laptop until they made an adequate keyboard.

    A well design keyboard shouldn't be so decisive. It seems like half of all people hate and the other half put up with it (and a small portion of that half actually think it's an improvement).
     
  7. ficktjuv, Dec 15, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2018

    ficktjuv thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    I chose the provocative topic by design. There is no right or wrong way of using a keyboard, ofcourse.

    What I mean is apple are 'thinking different' in a pretty big way here. I can, ofcourse, only speak for myself. But my experience is that at first I didnt like it at all, after some time I got used to it and I didnt only "accept it", I cant use a computer without it now. I honestly searched the whole web for a keyb like this for my windows pc but could not find it.

    I know. A company should not force people to like its products, but in this case I 'got it'. I know why they did this design. Its not because of thin laptop. They could have kept old keys if they wanted to, the mbp is not a piece of paper.
    What they did was evolve the keyboard to the next stage, like USB C. People dont like it at first, but when they understand the huge benefits they cant actually live without it.
     
  8. niji Contributor

    niji

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2003
    Location:
    tokyo
    #8
    i really share your ideas.
    yr machine have the 3rd gen keyboard?
    i just got a new 2018 MacBook Air with this new keyboard.
    as with most people, the keyboard really determines yr ability to interact with the machine so much, and i was extremely hesitant to buy any new device in fear of this keyboard.
    but it is near perfect now.
    still rather loud.
    (sorry i can't re-learn how to press keys as you suggest, so i tend to "hit" keys.
    irregardless, it is quick, responsive, and absolutely enough travel to satisfy this ex-refugee from the older MacBook Air that had a robust "full" travel stroke.
     
  9. ficktjuv thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    yes I have the third gen. I'm not suggesting you need to relearn or think of anything. Just use the keyb and maybe you will change the way you type without notice at all, like me.

    Like my old trainer used to say - "shut up and train". Dont think, just use it and let your hands and fingers find their way haha
     
  10. SDColorado Contributor

    SDColorado

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    #10
    I can’t say that I have ever had any problem going back to a proper keyboard. Even after a couple years with the 2016 and more recently the 2018, I have used a few other computers lately such as the Lenovo X1 Carbon and Extreme, the Surface Book 2, Asus Zephyrus. I am able to use them instantly and no “adoption” required.

    Apple isn’t doing anything innovative with the butterfail keyboard. It’s just a matter of think thinner, think cheaper.
     
  11. mrex macrumors 68040

    mrex

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    Jul 16, 2014
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    europe
    #11
    only problem i have it is the crappy bf-keyboard itself.. going to replace it on someday when i have time to leave it to the service... atleast the service lasts 4 years...
     
  12. Celedral macrumors 6502

    Celedral

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    May 29, 2008
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    Los Angeles
    #12
    Generally the average consumers don't even use their keyboards as much, since everything is in a predictive state. Start typing and the algorithm predicts your next word. It's almost like typing will becoming a thing of the past. It's been so rare for me to type much as everything starts to appear before I even finish a word. I'm actually one of the few that actually enjoy typing on the new keyboard, but I must say that the Surface keyboards are among one of the best typing experiences I had ever had.
     
  13. Ploki macrumors 68040

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    Jan 21, 2008
    #13
    I just used it as normal for one month and going back to the old 2012-2015 design was a terrible switch, i love typing on it.
    If only it didn't double-stroke the "i" key after 1 month of using it. :D (on the 2018.)

    Well yes. But not all languages are supported for predictive type, and I'm still faster with typing stuff out than picking the correct prediction...
     
  14. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

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    #14
    Okay I guess if all you do is type into the youtube search bar the keyboard doesn’t matter. You’re obviously not a student or someone who has to type for work (or writes for pleasure).
     
  15. Celedral macrumors 6502

    Celedral

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    May 29, 2008
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    Los Angeles
    #15
    You're right. Those that really rely on the keyboard will find it hard to adapt to for various reasons. I use Hotkeys mainly for my work and have not notice any issues using the keyboard. As I wrote above, the general consumers rarely use their keyboard now since everything on their computer is indexed and all they do is just scroll and click 90% of the time. I don't think anyone even fully types out the web addresses anymore, unless it's a super unique site.
     
  16. Enclavean macrumors regular

    Enclavean

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  17. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

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    #17
    Is a computer autogenerating the posts you’re typing?
     
  18. Ma2k5, Dec 16, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2018

    Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    #18
    I think the assumption you are making OP is being able to type fast = better keyboard. I can type around 150+ WPM on these butterfly keyboards, which is higher than some other keyboards - but it doesn’t mean it is an enjoyable or comfortable experience relatively to other keyboards.

    And I type very softly (used to use cherry mx red switches, which have very little actuation force to the point they go down by merely resting your fingers on them!)

    Other than the comfort aspect, there is the other issue of keyboard failure, which for most is the bigger issue. It’s one thing for the keyboard to be a little inconvenient, but another to be non-functioning.
     
  19. Queen6 macrumors 604

    Queen6

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    #19
    One of the worst keyboards that I've had the displeasure to use. Primary reason why my business traveler is not being replaced by another Mac after over 3 year's with a Retina MacBook.

    Personally I'm not interested in a notebook where the reliability of the keyboard is a factor in the purchasing decission. Apple's obsession with ever thinner is now little more than an exercise in deminising returns.

    After 3 years Apple remains incapable of resolving it's poor design that it clearly values more than practicality, common sense and it's customer's...

    Q-6
     
  20. Dominus Mortem macrumors regular

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    Aug 3, 2011
    #20
    I thought everyone universally loved the new keyboard until seeing this thread and a few others like it and reading a couple of professional reviewers who didn't like it much. Everyone I know personally who has one likes it though, or are lying. Was just talking to someone about his new Air today and one of his favorite things about it is the keyboard. We both agreed the screen could be a tad better though, but it is still pretty good. For me, both my new computers have the gen2 and the gen3 keyboard.

    The lower key travel changes how one types (or should change how one types). It's amazing to me how the lower travel coupled with the flatness of the keys and the low pressure needed, improves my typing experience. I type faster with fewer mistakes. In fact I had never cured my habit of type "teh" instead "the" fairly often (transposition errors) until this keyboard.

    My first typing experience was on a manual typewriter that required some forearm muscles, extreme focus, and dedication, to get to 60wpm. It took a couple weeks before my pinky fingers could fully depress the keys solidly. Everything in-between has been easier and has gotten even easier over time. My first computer keyboard was an IBM one that had HUGE keys on it (as in tall, like monoliths) that were LOUD. I'd find it a dinosaur now and would probably despise it wholly, but back then I was fine with it.

    My own little straw poll tells me that most people either like the new keyboard or are ambivalent about it.

    I'm a writer. I write constantly, so I'm not some hotkey guy or part-time typer. I type all the time. The first day I had the new computer with this keyboard my hands were a little sore. I was hitting the keys too hard and it felt like typing on a piece of Micarta. Three days later everything felt normal and great. And I was typing faster than ever before.

    I'm sure there are people who hate this keyboard; some of you are here. Not everyone likes vanilla ice cream either. But I think calling it a failure might be quite a bit over-reaching. But I'm sure you will. I think I'm on safe ground saying Apple isn't going back to where it came from with this keyboard. They'll probably give the keys even less travel in future iterations. We will adjust or die, or gripe about it and soldier on with a grimace.
     
  21. th0masp macrumors 6502

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    germany
    #21
    I tried the 2016 in the store, the keyboard felt bad right away, I could tell that I would have hated using it. Avoided the machine (not just for that reason to be fair).

    This is the inverse to when Apple introduced the chiclet keys and I tried out the 2008 model. Felt awesome right away in the store and I could tell that it was a more pleasant feel than the full size (regular, not fancy or particularly clicky) desktop keyboards I had been using. I bought the computer (and subsequent ones using this type of keyboard) and for my desktop PC I even got the fullsize white/aluminium chiclet keyboard.

    What's the benefit of USB-C by the way? It looks quite flimsy to me - like Mini-USB in all its shapes, easy to damage when the going gets a little tough. Fitting analogy to the keyboard redesign? ;)
     
  22. jinnyman macrumors regular

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    Sep 2, 2011
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    Lincolnshire, IL
    #22
    Obviously Apple !@#$ up. and someone is telling me I should re-learn how I use my keyboard? wow
    --- Post Merged, Dec 17, 2018 ---
    I'm actually ok with how it's typing. The poor reliability is the reason I'm disgusted with it.
    With the price of the thing, it's humiliation on Apple's part.
     
  23. smirking, Dec 17, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018

    smirking macrumors 68020

    smirking

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    #23
    Yup. I totally agree with you that there's an ideal way to use the butterfly keys. You really need to develop a lighter touch on this style of keyboard. You COULD pound it the way you would a buckling spring mechanical, but your fingers would either get sore or it would just be the worst experience in the world.

    That said, not everyone is good at adapting. Some people are just more naturally "athletic" than others and have an easier time adapting to new motor patterns. If you're born to slam the keys this will be one of the most miserable keyboards you're ever going to use. I used to be a slammer, so those of you who hate the new keyboard, I can understand where you're coming from. Hand pain made me change my ways. I type as lightly as possible now and I appreciate how easy it is to use a light touch on this keyboard. I couldn't use the previous MBP keyboards without pain. I can type pain free on the butterfly keys so for that reason alone, I'm a fan.

    I had the same learning curve as you. I've owned dozens of mostly mechanical keyboards of all different shapes and layouts. Each style has required me to change my typing approach to use them best. The butterfly keys are no exception. I absolutely hated them at first until I figured out the technique that you described.

    I switch back and forth between the butterfly keys and a low force mechanical.
    --- Post Merged, Dec 17, 2018 ---
    If you only tried it in store, you haven't really tried it. It really does take a little getting used to. People who are able to get used to it often end up liking it. What the OP wrote is true. There's an ideal way to use it and whatever you're doing for the limited time you're playing with it in the store isn't going to be that way.

    I viciously hated the keyboard when I tried it in store. I pushed back my purchase because I hated it so much. The only reason I ended up getting a 2016 MBP was because I wanted a 5K screen badly and eventually gave in and resigned myself to carrying a bluetooth keyboard to put on top of the butterfly keys.
     
  24. th0masp macrumors 6502

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    germany
    #24
    Well it's a bit like buying shoes, isn't it? If they don't fit you can tell right away and move on to try another pair. No need to pick up the zen of 'using it right' - or getting into binding your feet. ;)
     
  25. Nhwhazup macrumors 68020

    Nhwhazup

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    New Hampshire
    #25
    I, also love a good mechanical keyboard. I have a Filco with cherry reds that is my favorite. It has a very light feel and I never tire when doing heavy typing.
     

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25 December 15, 2018