Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Fkey template for IntelliJ

I've come to really appreciate IntelliJ IDEA. It's a wonderful IDE and so glad I discovered it as a by product of working with Grails and Groovy. As I use it more and more I wanted to start to exploit more of its features and also to begin to get the key patterns to memory so I can work a bit faster. Failing to find an fkey overlay for IntelliJ I made one. I include a link to the SVG so anyone can modify/improve it as they wish. If you do improve it, please email me updates so I can include them here.

SVG Fkey template for IntelliJ IDEA (I would highly recommend the InkScape SVG editor, if you want to edit this document)

I am also linking to the document page with the official IntelliJ PDF key maps documents which list keyboard shortcuts. This is a nice document I think should be more prominently noted at their web site. You can add in your own keyboard short cuts and there is a blog posting by Ted Young that shows an example of how to do that.

I recently noticed the Shortcut Key List plugin ( http://plugins.intellij.net/plugin/?id=2391 ) which displays a simple box with short cuts in it.

Also there is Key Promoter (http://plugins.intellij.net/plugin/?id=1003 ) which can look for repetitive actions and ask if you want to assign a key sequence. I have started to fill in opening in the template above with some of the common things I do.

I'd also like to mention a new keyboard that I am totally taken with (as is my 3 month old son). It is based on the old IBM Model M keyboards. You can learn more about these keyboards at http://www.clickykeyboards.com/ which re-sells old Model M keyboards and also the Wikipedia entry (Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_M_Keyboard ). These are wonderful, if not a little noisy, keyboards that many of you may recall from your first experiences with computers.

A company called Unicomp bought the rights to the buckling spring technology and makes brand new USB based versions of the Model M style keyboard called the Customizer which is what I picked up and is pictured below. If you don't know what buckling spring keyboards are give them a look. In a time when keyboards are getting far too complex for their own good, I'll take a keyboard that just does one thing and does it very well.

take care

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