Dell Streak user begins work on split keyboard


The Dell Streak's 5-inch screen is certainly great for viewing content in landscape mode, but it can pose an uncomfortable problem for creating content. Depending on the size of your hands and natural reach of your thumbs, typing on any soft keyboard stretched out across the large screen can become less than ideal after an extended period of time.

Software developers and manufacturers faced this issue years ago with UMPCs and addressed it by adding hardware or software split keyboards (e.g., Pepper Pad 3, Wibrain B1H, DialKeys, and most recently the Toshiba Libretto W100). The success of the executions varied by device, but the core idea was a good one. Although typing on a split keyboard takes some getting used to, text input becomes much faster and more comfortable with practice.

That's why I was happy to hear from Streak user David Zelman, who modified the example keyboard from the Android SDK to create StreakBoard (shown above). It's a very simple keyboard with no additional settings and a caps lock bug, but it's a good start and reduces how far your thumbs need to stretch to reach the middle of the keyboard when typing text that doesn't include numbers. David would actually like someone with more programming experience to "take the idea and run with it," but in the meantime, you can download StreakBoard from the link below.

If you need it, here's a tutorial on how to use a different keyboard on your Streak.

[xda-developers] Thanks, David!

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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