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1848 Posts

11-28-2007

CZ

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Lenovo 2014 keyboard layout (heart attack warning !)

2014-01-05, 19:05 PM

Seriously, is that joke https://fbcdn-sphotos-g-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-prn2/1500798_10152153927863120_1263238189_o.jpg ?

 The image link comes from discussion on official Lenovo page https://www.facebook.com/lenovo

 

Update:

http://www.theverge.com/2014/1/5/5277296/lenovo-x1-carbon-touch-haswell-announced

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykdl9nbwLAc&7063695

 

It could have been nice ultrabook but the clueless keyboard layout kills it at all. It is sad that company that inherited machines known for the best notebook keyboard is not able/willing to design proper keyboard layout that can be used by professionals.

 

Currently all comments on the The Verge article are negative because of the keyboard. Who actually wanted to fix something that ain't broken ?

 

Update 2:

http://blog.lenovo.com/products/introducing-the-new-thinkpad-x1-carbon

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2 Posts

06-29-2013

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Re: Lenovo 2014 keyboard layout (heart attack warning !)

2014-01-06, 0:58 AM

Wow that's extremely gimmicky and not business friendly.  What's with the Home/End and Backspace/Delete buttons?  And what happened to the Caps Lock combined with left Shift key?

 

I'm so glad I bought the current generation of X1 Carbon Touch.  At least it still has physical function keys and the buttons for the Trackpoint.

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74 Posts

06-13-2012

USA

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Re: Lenovo 2014 keyboard layout (heart attack warning !)

2014-01-06, 6:47 AM

I threw up in my mouth a little.

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3 Posts

01-06-2014

Israel

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New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-06, 16:03 PM

I was a happy Thinkpad user for many years. I've been anxiously waiting the X1 Carbon refresh for months. It was supposed to become my next notebook.

 

Congratulations Lenovo, you just spoiled it all! This notebook could have been perfect... If only... IF ONLY you didn't choose to mess with the most important trait of Thinkpads - the controls!

 

Sorry, THAT is a deal breaker. My next notebook won't be of your make :-(

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7634 Posts

11-19-2007

US

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Re: New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-06, 18:31 PM

 

 

Puppy,

 

Thanks for the feedback.   I think some of your points are valid as I know that there is muscle memory and layout changes can require adaptation as you move from one generation of system to another.

 

While I think our designers should continue to hear constructive criticism from our long term ThinkPad owners, and we can count on you and many others to provide it, I hope that everyone will also look beyond first impressions of the change.  Many things that have grown to be understood and even embraced over time have been initially given a cold reception in blog and forum comments.  I remember even simple changes like the enlarged insert and delete buttons several generations ago elicited comments that we had completely lost our way.

 

Perhaps we can watch this video from USAToday as I think it demonstrates value that comes from some of the changes, and also check out the Wired's initial coverage .   Over the course of CES, I expect more videos and "hands on" impressions to come about and I hope that we'll include them here and consider and discuss these changes from an objective perspective.    

 

 

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74 Posts

06-13-2012

USA

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Re: New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-06, 18:43 PM

Hey Mark,

 

Has the new X1C been tested with Linux? Does the function bar work, as well as the shift-caps-lock thing, the ethernet port, and the new dock?

 

Although I did throw up in my mouth a little, I always kindle hope that Lenovo will improve its laptops. I can already say I'm not a fan of replacing caps lock, though, as I use it as Esc, nor the continued lack of menu key. Plus I use ~ all the time as a Linux user, and that's a very strange place to put it.

 

Thanks

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7634 Posts

11-19-2007

US

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Re: New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-06, 21:28 PM

 

Good questions in terms of how these features might work with another OS like Linux.

 

I'll see what I can find out ...

 

 

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1 Posts

01-07-2014

Seattle, WA

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Re: New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-07, 2:17 AM

Hi Mark,

 

I've been using ThinkPads professionally and as my personal computer for about 7 years now. I am usually very open to giving new technology a chance. I haven't used the new chiclet keyboard for an extended period of time, but I've been willing to give it a shot. I can't say I'm a fan of eliminating the scroll button for the TrackPoint controls, since it means I'd need to constantly move my hand to the trackpad or mouse to scroll, but even then I'd be willing to grin and bear it and give it a chance. That said, I must respectfully say that I strongly think that the new top row is a terrible design decision when it comes to supporting the use cases of a power user.

 

For me, it's incredibly important to need to look at the keyboard as little as possible. I'm trying to focus on my work on the screen before me. As a software developer, using the Fn keys is a very common task. My coworkers and I use them to quickly jump around to important pieces of code, and we also use them when debugging problems. Doing both of these tasks can take an extreme amount of concentration, and any interuption can make things more difficult. We are keeping a lot of information in our head at once (for example, the paths in our code that have been taken, the past and present state of the computer's memory, and what we expect to happen next). If our thought process gets off track, we may need to start over on what we were doing, which is incredibly frustrating. Someone stopping by and saying "hi" can be enough to make this happen. This comic gives a rough idea of what I'm talking about: http://heeris.id.au/2013/this-is-why-you-shouldnt-interrupt-a-programmer.

 

That said, there's no question that this new keyboard design would force me to constantly look down at the keyboard to find the Fn key I wish to hit. I can't simply take a guess at where the key I want is and try again if I miss it; there is frequently no going back if you hit the wrong key when debugging software. With the frequency I'd need to look down at the keyboard, looking away from the code on the screen would make concentrating harder and would become a detriment to my productivity.

 

I should also mention that software development is but one example of where this change is annoying. Simply changing volume or refreshing a webpage with F5 becomes harder to accomplish now, though the consequences of making a mistake in those cases are not nearly as severe as my previous example.

 

One of my coworkers (who's also a software developer) upgraded from a T400 to a T430 around a year ago, which included the new chiclet keyboard. He likes the upgrade quite a bit, but he has one major complaint: the fact that the Fn keys are no longer split into sections of 4 keys. Due to that change, he has had to look at the keyboard more frequently. The change in the X1 Carbon is only going to exacerbate the problem, I fear to the point that it will become unusable for us.

 

I care very deeply about the quality of the computers I purchase. I don't know how Lenovo can make changes like this one and still claim with a straight face that they are targeting business users. It seems like this kind of change would make much more sense in something like the IdeaPad line. I want the features I need to perform tasks as efficiently as possible. Finding usable Fn keys has already become harder over the years, and it is heartbreaking to see Lenovo slowly but surely chipping away at the features that made me love ThinkPads in the first place (including other features that I haven't mentioned here).

 

I'm incredibly sad to say it, but I think this new keyboard change is enough to push me over the edge and look into other manufacturer options. I'd hate to have to abandon my beloved TrackPoint, but I feel like I am not left with another option if this is the direction in which Lenovo continues to march forward.

 

Thanks for listening,

Chris

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35 Posts

11-15-2008

US

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Re: New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-07, 3:17 AM

I agree with the previous poster. I also have purchased many ThinkPads over the years. I was willing to tolerate the chiclet keyboard on the original X1C, even though it was inferior (and still is, after using it a lot) to the traditional keyboard style.

 

But the removal of the physical TrackPoint buttons and now this keyboard layout are the final straw. I will have to use my 1st-gen X1C until it stops working, then I guess I'll have to go back to a more serviceable machine, like the T420, and make it last as long as possible with spare parts. After that, I guess I'll be looking for a non-ThinkPad that has a sane keyboard and carrying a USB mouse around with me everywhere. Or maybe the TrackPoint patents will have expired by then and another manufacturer will be able to implement a good pointing stick.

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1848 Posts

11-28-2007

CZ

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  • Message 10 of 36

Re: New X1 Carbon keyboard

2014-01-07, 11:23 AM

CheeToS wrote:  

I care very deeply about the quality of the computers I purchase. I don't know how Lenovo can make changes like this one and still claim with a straight face that they are targeting business users. It seems like this kind of change would make much more sense in something like the IdeaPad line.


That's the only issue. Do not mess ThinkPad classic features. I frequently switch between desktop PC keyboard (standard layout that is the same for 25+ years, the only change was addition of Win keys) and notebook. The reason I have chosen ThinkPad was the keyboard layout that was very close to the desktop keyboards. I also use F keys and navigation keys including Home/End keys (combined with Alt, Shift, Ctrl) very often. Having them in the right location is essential.

 

I don't have any problem with keyboard layout change that introduced those big Esc and Del keys. There was a logical reason behind that. Unfortunately since .30 series there is no longer and logic behind the keyboard layout changes, no improvement, the excellent keyboard layout has been ruined without any options. Moreover the X240 keyboard is a complete fail because you can not use directly F keys and the End key altogether.

 

Ironically switching from an older ThinkPad to other brand models is less painful than to any current ThinkPad model. The keyboard layout is closer, trackpoint is there including mechanical buttons. Dedicated volume control buttons are there as well. LED indicators of HDD activity, wireless state and battery. Mechanical global wireless switch. Similar hinges design. And non-TN displays options, of course.

 

Why we have to look elsewhere to upgrade our beloved old ThinkPad ?

 

P.S. again, digital camera market currently have big success with retro-style camera that have a lot of mechanical controls. Why ? Because it is proven to be the best solution for its purpose.

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