Things I Use

Text editor: Emacs

Emacs is a fantastic environment for writing code, as it lets you reprogram your environment on the fly with whatever functionality you want. I use it for all sorts of things, though not IRC.

One of the more difficult parts of getting started with Emacs is figuring out a robust way to handle third-party packages that extend the editor. I’ve written an article on setting this up called “Bootstrapping an Emacs config with quelpa-use-package”.

My full Emacs configuration is visible on GitHub. (Note: this configuration is quite old at this point).

Keyboards: Atreus and Model 01

I’ve dealt with intermittent wrist pain for a few years, so having an ergonomic typing setup is very important to me. I use two ergonomic keyboards - the Atreus and the Model 01.

I’ve had my Atreus for several years, and used it as a daily driver most of that time. As a travel keyboard, a fun project, and a relatively low-cost option as far as staggered-column keyboards go, the Atreus is a great choice. I found it to be incredibly capable for such a small keyboard, and I was quite happy with it as a primary input device. The wood construction is also quite nice to look at. It does take quite some time to get comfortable with the layout, but once you are it becomes pretty easy to use.

(I’m also looking forward to the arrival of the Atreus. This version of the Atreus is mass-produced, has hot-swappable keyswitches, has non-blank keycaps available, and comes with optional accessories for travel and desktop use. I’ll update here once it arrives!)

The biggest downsides of the Atreus for me are that it’s completely flat, a bit cramped for desktop use, and requires key chording to type a lot of characters by default (digits, for instance). For those reasons, I’ve also picked up a Model 01. The Model 01 is a gorgeous keyboard. The wood is very comfortable and looks great. The layout is easier to learn than the Atreus’, largely because the keycaps aren’t blank and the keyboard doesn’t require as frequent use of layers, since it has a lot more keys. The RGB lights are fun too, if somewhat distracting when you switch them accidentally. It also tents by raising the middle of the keyboard, or even splits into two entirely different halves.