How it works

The basis of this technology is the moving from a system that requires you to remember the physical location of dozens of buttons to having all of those buttons represented on your fingertips. This eliminates hand movement but rather move one finger and then another in sequence to achieve the desired keystroke.

This is not like a phone keypad that requires you to press until you get the right letter, or a touch-screen/menu system that makes you look at an on-screen image to select the correct input. All keystrokes are provided with direct random access to anything you want, anytime you want it.

One or two presses in sequence result in 100 simple keystrokes employing only two fingers at a time. You could use as few as two fingers and up to ten fingers and can use the DecaTxt Keyboard with either left or right hand. The configuration is alphabetic, which makes learning a simple task. Use one finger for the first ten letters(a-j), the next eight letters (k-r) are produced with a right thumb “shift” and the last eight (s-z) are produced with a left thumb “shift”. Press both thumbs to place a “shift command” to to your next keystroke and easily capitalize letters.

The key benefit is the ability to accurately touch-type without looking and with a minimum of finger movement. This makes text communications and data entry convenient with low visibility or in tight quarters and can be used in both mobile and stationary conditions. Our system generates keystrokes when a single key is tapped (press & release) or at the instant a second key is pressed. There is no waiting for results.

The following describes how to use this “tool” with both hands.

Hold both hands out in front of you with your palms down. Imagine numbering your fingers in this position beginning with the number one on your left pinky finger. This makes your left thumb finger number five, your right index finger number seven and your right pinky finger zero. These are the numbers that we will refer to in the pictures and throughout this document.

The Alphabet – Single Presses and Thumb shifts

Ask someone to push a button and more often than not, they will extend their right index finger for the task. This is also the finger that we use to begin the alphabet. By starting the alphabet on the “7” finger, there are a number of interesting relationships that develop that help make learning the rest of the system much easier. This keyboard is alphabetic and thus easier to learn than keyboards that relay on letter frequency for their position. The first ten letters are a single tap from each finger.

“a” – right index (7 finger), “b” – right middle (8 finger), “c” – right ring (9 finger), “d” – right pinky (0 finger) “e” – right thumb (6 finger) “f” – left thumb (5 finger), “g” – left index (4 finger), “h” – left middle (3 finger) “i” – left ring (2 finger) & “j” – left pinky (1 finger)

The next eight letters are produced with the right thumb (6 finger) held down, much like a shift key. The order remains the same starting with the right index (7 finger) but this time skipping the left thumb. So with the 6 finger held, you get “k” by taping the 7 finger, “l” – 8 finger, “m” – 9 finger, “n” – 0 finger, “o” – 4 finger, “p” – 3 finger, “q” – 2 finger & “r” – 1 finger.

The last eight letters are produced the same way but this time with the left thumb (5 finger) held and skipping the right thumb. “s” by tapping the 7 finger, “t” – 8 finger, “u” – 9 finger “v” – 0 finger, “w” – 4 finger, “x” – 3 finger “y” – 2 finger, & “z” – 1 finger.

When both thumbs are pressed, the next character will be shifted, making it simple to create capital letters. If you are using one thumb to make a letter, simply tap the other thumb before pressing the finger where the letter is located and it will be capitalized. If both thumbs are pressed and any third key is also pressed, the input will be voided.

Here is a simple way to map the characters and the fingers used to build them:

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
j i h g f e a b c d
r q p o Cap Hold k l m n
z y x w Hold Cap s t u v

Or looking at it another way:

a (7), b (8), c (9), d (0), e (6), f (5), g (4), h (3), I (2), j (1)

k (6-7), l (6-8), m (6-9), n (6-0), o (6-4), p (6-3), q (6-2),r (6-1)

s (5-7) t (5-8), u (5-9), v (5-0), w (5-4), x (5-3), y (5-2), z (5-1)

To quickly learn the system, try to remember the three letters associated with each finger. It may be helpful to think of words to strengthen the association. Here are some examples.

aks- (also known as), blt (like the sandwich) cmu (for cursor & macro use-more on that later) dnv (this pinky is de-envoy of the other) e & f on the thumbs, gow (the word “go” sounds like there should be a “w” in it), hpx (Hewlett Packard & windows XP) iqy (why, what is your IQ?) jrz (junior’s, jerzees, Jersey) The three letters for each finger are the foundation for where all other keystrokes are generated.

Punctuation: The Index Shifts

The next most important aspect of typing is the spaces and punctuation between words so we look to the next strongest fingers for the task. Both index fingers are used to for common punctuation, the right for most writing functions and the left for more computer related symbols. Keeping this in mind along with the location of the various letters will help you find the symbols that you want.

The Right Index shift

With the right index (7 finger) held, the 8 finger (t) = tab, 9 finger (c) = comma & 0 finger = apostrophe . The right thumb, (6 finger) = space, the left thumb, (5 finger) = backspace, 4 finger = enter, 3 finger (p) = period, the 2 finger (q) = question mark and the 1 finger = exclamation point to keep these sentence endings together.

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
! ? . Enter B-space Space Hold Tab ,

The Left Index Shift

With the left index (4 finger) held, the left thumb (5 finger) = back slash, 6 finger = forward slash, 7 finger (a) = ampersand, 8 finger (t) = tilde, 9 finger (c) = colon & 0 finger = semi colon. The 3 finger (x) = asterisk , 2 finger (q) = quote and 1 finger = @

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
@ * Hold \ / & ~ : ;

There is also a way to swap the letter “f” with “space” to make the most used key “the space key” a single keystroke. We will just keep it simple for now until you have learned the rest of the system.

Locks & Lines & Page functions - The Middle Finger Shifts.

Once we have the main elements of writing established with the thumb and index shifts, we will look at some of the functions that change modes and make navigation easy. These shifts also provide the various lines found on a standard keyboard, straight lines associated with the letter “l” and bent lines associated with the letter “x”.

The Right Middle Shift

For the # 8 finger, we take the cue from the letter “l” and use it for the three different locked modes. “L” & “C” to lock capitals (8-9), “L” & “N” to lock numbers (8-0) & “L” & “S” to lock scroll (8-7). The “L finger” also is the shift for the different lines starting with the underscore (8-4), hyphen on the “h” finger (8-3), the accent (8-2) and pipe character (8-1). This leaves the two thumbs which are used to provid a method of producing some three finger keystrokes. These three finger keystrokes are used to provide the twelve “F” keys typically found at the top of a keyboard. More on them later.

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
| ` - _ F7-F12 F1-F6 Scroll Lk Hold Cap Lk Num Lk

The Left Middle Shift

For the #3 finger, we take our cue from the letter “p” and use this shift to provide all of the page functions. Page-down with the “p” & “d” fingers (3-0), page-up with the “p” & “u” fingers (3-9), Page end with the right “e” thumb (3-6) and home on the left thumb (3-5). Pause is the “p” & “z” fingers (3-1) and print screen is the “p” & “s” fingers (3-7). The remaining shifts take their cue from the letter “x” and produce the bent lines such as “less-than” on the “l” finger (3-8), “greater-than” on the “g” finger (3-4) and the caret on the left ring finger (3-2). Where else would you find a carat?

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
Pause ^ HOLD > Home End P-Screen < Pg-up Pg-Down

Linked keys and Cursor Movement - The Ring Finger Shifts

Next are the cursor movements and the keystrokes that control basic computer operations. These are the keystrokes needed to link functions, alter text and move on-screen elements. Here is where you can provide the “control-alternate-delete” command in order to keep your windows functional.

The Right Ring Finger

The finger responsible for c, m, & u (# 9) is the shift key for cursor and macro use (provided in some versions) and also provides for some of the remaining symbols. With the 9 finger held, the 7 finger becomes the left macro button and the 8 key becomes the right macro button. Next are the cursor keys, (9-6) cursor right, (9-5) cursor left, (9-4) cursor up and (9-3) cursor down. The last three shifts are used for the symbols $ on the left ring finger (9-2) (those carats can be expensive!), % on the left pinky (9-1) (looks almost like a Z) and # on the right pinky “N” finger (9-0).

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
% $ Macro Left Macro Right HOLD #

The Left Ring Finger

This finger is often associated with “marriage” and is thus used for functions that are typically combined together. Some of these keystrokes are combined with the next keystroke so that pressing the control keystroke before pressing the “c” keystroke is the same as holding control and the “c” key on a traditional keyboard. With the left ring pressed (2), the right thumb “E” finger is “Escape” (2-6), the right index “A” finger is the right “Alternate” key (2-7), the right middle “B” finger is “Break” (2-8), right ring “C” finger is the right “Control” key (2-9), right pinky “D” finger is “Delete” (2-0), and the left pinky is “insert” (2-1). The “Windows key” on the “w” finger (2-4), and “Menu” (or Mac key) on the left middle finger (2-3). The last shift is the left thumb “f” and used as a function key that can be programmed to provide additional functions that may be desired (2-5).

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
Insert HOLD Menu Windows Function Escape Alternate Break Control Delete

The Numbers - The Pinky Shifts

Numbers are provided in this system with analytical logic, left to right, similar to the way it is represented on standard keyboards. In number-lock mode, the numbers are single press and release, left pinky to right pinky, 1 through 0. In a non-number lock mode, the right pinky is held for the first numbers, 1- 5, on the left hand side, (0-1),(0-2),(0-3),(0-4),(0-5) and the left pinky is held for the last five numbers, 6 - 0, on the right hand side (1-6),(1-7),(1-8),(1-9),(1-0). The six various brackets “{“ (1-2) “[“ (1-3) “]” (1-4) “}” (1-5) “(“ (0-8) “)” (0-9), the addition symbol, “+” (0-7) and the equals symbol, “=“ (0-6), complete the available pinky shifts.

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
1 2 3 4 5 = + ( ) HOLD
HOLD { [ ] } 6 7 8 9 0

The Function Keys – Three Finger Shifts

We extend the system to incorporate the rest of the standard keystrokes and we do this by using a few three finger keystrokes. As discussed earlier, The right middle and thumb keys are the path to these keystrokes and provide the twelve function keys. These “F –keys” begin with the right middle “8” finger and use the left and right thumbs.

Right Middle & Right Thumb

Start with the right middle “8” finger held, add the right thumb “6” finger and the left pinky “1” finger for the F1 key (8-6-1), left ring “2” finger for the F2 key (8-6-2), left middle “3” finger for the F3 key (8-6-3), left index “4” finger for the F4 key (8-6-4), the right index “7” finger for the F5 key (8-6-7), and the right ring “9” finger for the F6 key (8-6-9). The right pinky provides the virtually never used “systems request” key (8-6-0) but could be replaced with another keystroke if desired.

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
F1 F2 F3 F4 reserved HOLD 2 F5 HOLD 1 F6 SYS REQ

Right Middle & Left Thumb

Start with the right middle “8” finger held, add the left thumb “5” finger and the left pinky “1” finger for the F7 key (8-5-1), left ring “2” finger for the F8 key (8-5-2), left middle “3” finger for the F9 key (8-5-3), left index “4” finger for the F10 key (8-5-4), the right index “7” finger for the F11 key (8-5-7), and the right ring “9” finger for the F12 key (8-5-9). The right pinky provides a method to swap the position of the “space” key with the “f” key (8-5-0) to assist in making some input a bit more efficient. The “space” key is typically the most used key so it makes sense to provide this function with a single tap of the left thumb, similar to the way many people currently create a “space” on a standard keyboard.

Lt Pinky Lt Ring Lt Middle Lt Index Lt Thumb Rt Thumb Rt Index Rt Middle Rt Ring Rt Pinky
F7 F8 F9 F10 HOLD 2 reserved F11 HOLD 1 F12 f/space

This covers all of the standard keys necessary for input but here are some final thoughts to consider. Because we use the same key codes of a standard keyboard, shifted keystrokes will produce the same symbols as you would normally get from shifted keystrokes on a standard keyboard. For example, if you press both thumbs before pressing the “1” keystroke, (5-6, 0-1) you would get the “!” key. Although this is less efficient, it may help until you learn the complete system.

Only a few repeat keys are provided in this system. Our thought was to keep things simple and not allow the process to overwhelm new users. The keys that repeat are; space, back-space, delete, period, hyphen, underscore, and the cursor keys. Functions like alt-tab are slowed down to make choosing the window you want easier and a better option than being able to only choose between two windows.

Tests with this “credit card sized” configuration show that many can understand how to “touch-type” the alphabet in less than one minute with mastery after just a few hours.

For More Information, Please contact us at x@in10did.com or call 940-488-9737 and leave a message.

This input technology is covered but US Patent # 6542091 and is the property of Wayne Rasanen, Architect, IN10DID, Inc.