DIY Home Row Finger Placement Nubs for Remapped Dvorak Keyboards

Pro tip: converting your keyboard to Dvorak is awesome, but you lose the little nubs on the “J” and “F” keys that let you plant your hands by feel. I use little strips of vinyl stickers on the index-finger home keys (“U” and “H”) so I can find them by fingertip. Paper stickers will get gross pretty quickly, but the vinyl holds up pretty well. I have to replace them every 3 months or so, but that’s not too big of a deal. Finger-feel-key-finding doesn’t sound like a big deal, but in practice the difference between having and not-having nubs is enormous.

finger-nubs-laptop-wide

If you’re in an office setting and can’t find stickers, I’ve also had success with excess label-tape. The tape is too thin to feel when stuck flat to the keys, but it works nicely when folded into flaps.

finger-nubs1

Pro tip 2: if you’re in an environment where sharing keyboards is the norm (e.g. a pair-programming shop), prominently label the Dvorak keyboards. I can’t tell you how many times someone’s walked over to my machine, started typing, and gotten that “is-the-world-crazy-or-is-it-just-me?” look in their eyes before spending 5 minutes trying to figure out what the hell is going on.

tl;dr: Vinyl stickers make great home-row-key nubs on remapped keyboards. While your at it, label keyboards as Dvorak to prevent confusion.

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