WARNING: This blog entry was imported from my old blog on blogs.sun.com (which used different blogging software), so formatting and links may not be correct.
Seriously. Who uses the caps-lock key?
Other than people composing Nigerian Scam (419) e-mails - you know the type, "DEAR SIR... CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS PROPOSAL... typo typo typo."
I got used to Sun keyboards that put the control key in the location where capslock keys are found on PC keyboards. When I used Linux and Solaris x86 I was able to use xmodmap to remap the caps lock key to act as a control key - but of course anytime I try to use somebody else's computer, such as at an internet cafe when travelling, or worse yet, when doing a demo on fixed hardware somewhere - I keep hitting caps lock and getting myself into trouble. I don't use Windows often enough to justify searching for a program
On my mac powerbook I've found a program to remap the capslock key as well - but it doesn't always work. After suspend and at occasional random times, the key has memories of its previous life and decides to switch case rather than put Emacs into the right mood for the next keystroke.
So here's my question -- why do we give such a prominent position to a key that's probably not used? Or am I missing some big class of business users that say work in spreadsheets with the capslock mode turned on? Since people use the control key a lot (to do ctrl-c and ctrl-v to copy and paste for example), can't we put the control key up there on all keyboards? It's certainly a more comfortable position than where it currently sits.