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Author Topic: QuickPad Keyboard Question  (Read 951 times)
RonB
Vectorite
***
Posts: 120


« on: August 28, 2010, 08:37:49 am »

Hi everyone,

Long time since I've used VectorLinux. Two of my computers "burned out" on the same night, both the VectorLinux and CentOS ones (GX270s). Have no idea what happened, the one computer wasn't even turned on. Both power supplies out and the motherboard out on the VectorLinux computer. Nothing else in the house was touched. I replaced the power supply on the CentOS machine. My "big" hard drive (160 Gig) was in my even older GX240, which had openSUSE 11 and hasn't been used regularly for a couple years. So, after procrastinating for almost six months, I finally backed up what I wanted to keep from openSUSE computer, stole and wiped its hard drive and built VectorLinux Deluxe on it. My son gets the GX240 now (which has been my plan for at least a year and a half). I'm a champion procrastinator. 

At any rate I'm back to VectorLinux and loving it. I left some free space to dual-boot CentOS on this computer because I'm still studying "Red Hat." (Some day it might come in handy.)

But anyhow, the question...

My brother gave me a QuickPad keyboard for writing (www.quickpad.com). The only way to use what you've written is to upload the file (via the keyboard port) to an application on a PC or a Mac. I think it's a great idea -- text flows into your word processor just as if you were typing. No problems with file compatibilty, so (in theory) any OS or any application should work.

It does work without a hitch in Windows and, I assume, it would work fine on a Mac (it has an Apple mode), but in a Linux Xwindows application I run into one of two problems, depending on which mode I'm using (PC or Apple). In Apple mode the text transfers, but it's garbled -- some words are fine, most are not. Characters drop out, but it's not random -- it's always the same characters in the same file. I haven't been able to figure out the pattern yet. In PC mode, the first word will transfer, but then the keyboard "whacks out" and the only way to recover is to reboot Linux. So neither mode works in an Xwindows application.

However... if I open a virtual terminal (ALT+CTRL+F2) and transfer the text into jstar (or, I assume, any text editor) it works flawlessly. I can save the file and read it into OpenOfficeOrg Write without issue. (Except, there are carriage returns behind each line so the text doesn't "flow," but that's easily cleared up using Find & Replace.)

So, finally, to the question. What does Xwindows do differently with keyboard input than does a non-Xwindows session? I'm guessing there is a driver between the keyboard and Xwindows, but I have no idea why it's there or how to bypass it for the QuickPad. It's not that important as I can use the QuickPad in the "round-about" way, but I am curious if something like this would be fixable.

Sorry for rambling. I've got a blog (probably a temporary one) for the QuickPad at "quickpadwriting.blogspot.com" if anyone is interested in reading more about it. (I'm long winded there, too.)

Anyhow, it's great to be back. I think this newer hard drive is even faster than the VectorLinux was on the old, much smaller drive.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2010, 05:21:27 pm by RonB » Logged

RonB
Registered Linux User #498581
Vector Linux Deluxe 6.0 -- Optiplex GX270
bigpaws
Vectorian
****
Posts: 1846


« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2010, 04:16:27 pm »

My guess is that the quickpad is seen as more of a waycom tablet vs a keyboard.

Check /var/log/Xorg.0.log after you plug in the quickpad, also have a look at /var/log/messages and
dmesg after you plug in this device.

Perhaps that will get you going in the right direction. I did some searches and have not found anything
in the way that might give a better direction.

Bigpaws
Logged
RonB
Vectorite
***
Posts: 120


« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2010, 05:22:46 pm »

My guess is that the quickpad is seen as more of a waycom tablet vs a keyboard.

Check /var/log/Xorg.0.log after you plug in the quickpad, also have a look at /var/log/messages and
dmesg after you plug in this device.

Perhaps that will get you going in the right direction. I did some searches and have not found anything
in the way that might give a better direction.

Thanks. I should have mentioned that it does work as a keyboard, it's the "Send" feature that gives me the trouble. I'm sorry I left that out in the first post.
Logged

RonB
Registered Linux User #498581
Vector Linux Deluxe 6.0 -- Optiplex GX270
roarde
Vectorian
****
Posts: 522


move the needle


« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2010, 04:04:51 pm »

Best guess I could come up with:
In xterm,   setxkbmap -print    to show what's loaded.
You could try commenting out the options in xorg.conf's  Input Device Keyboard section. Should that work, you might be able to save, set, and reset them on-the-fly with setxkbmap and scripts. Or not, I don't really know.

No solution here, but maybe that joggled something that'll eventually pan out.

Maybe    file - << EOF   run both from text mode and an X terminal would enlighten, maybe not. Just tag "EOF" onto the end of what you're sending from the QuickPad.
Logged

Robert
VL STD 7.1 RC2.2.2, icewmvmods
RonB
Vectorite
***
Posts: 120


« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2010, 04:44:44 pm »

Best guess I could come up with:
In xterm,   setxkbmap -print    to show what's loaded.
You could try commenting out the options in xorg.conf's  Input Device Keyboard section. Should that work, you might be able to save, set, and reset them on-the-fly with setxkbmap and scripts. Or not, I don't really know.

No solution here, but maybe that joggled something that'll eventually pan out.

Maybe    file - << EOF   run both from text mode and an X terminal would enlighten, maybe not. Just tag "EOF" onto the end of what you're sending from the QuickPad.

Thanks. Didn't even think to check Xorg's configuration. That's how brilliant I'm not. I'll probably just use it in the virtual terminal -- that's a simple solution and I don't want to mess up the keyboard settings for their main uses. But, then again, I might experiment with it just for the heck of it.

Thanks.
Logged

RonB
Registered Linux User #498581
Vector Linux Deluxe 6.0 -- Optiplex GX270
RonB
Vectorite
***
Posts: 120


« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2010, 05:20:50 pm »

Problem solved. eBay had a cheap QuickPad Pro for sale that came with a USB version of the Infrared Receiver. This one has absolutely no issues with Linux. It's nice to know, however, that the keyboard Infrared Receiver could at least be made to work. Thanks for your help, I still may experiment with the Xorg keyboard configuration, just to see if the QuickPad can be made to work in Xwindows with the keyboard version of the IR Receiver.

And I want to apologize for putting this post in the wrong forum. Sorry.
Logged

RonB
Registered Linux User #498581
Vector Linux Deluxe 6.0 -- Optiplex GX270
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