create .svg with hexagons

Asked by aka.bugle on 2008-01-21

I would like to add a layout created in Inkscape using hexagon shaped keys. according to some of the documentation this is possible... some other documentation states " not-likely". the math to map regular hexagons is pretty much figured out for a lot of games. there use to be a program developed at IBM called ATOMIK that used hex shaped keys... it is no longer available.
   the advantages for "tapping" out letters with a stylus are that ...
1.) you can fit more, larger keys into the same space
2.) if the keys are all the same size, "gestures" would be easier to implement speeding up text entry ... for example drawing a circle in any shiftable key would produce the shifted charachter. ( this feature can be seen in action w/ the PalmOs application MyKBD )

I have produced a hexagonal layout in Inkscape that I could attach to show you a simple example.

Question information

Language:
Spanish Edit question
Status:
Solved
For:
Onboard Edit question
Assignee:
No assignee Edit question
Solved by:
aka.bugle
Solved:
2008-01-28
Last query:
2008-01-28
Last reply:
2008-01-26

This question was reopened

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #1

This sounds like a good idea.

Please attach the svg and i'll see if I can get it to work.

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #2

My originally inspiration...
http://www.almaden.ibm.com/u/zhai/ATOMIK.htm 1/2 way down the page is
the original hex keyboard...
I emailed Mr. Zhai a while ago... he wasn't to helpful... ( demo isn't
available any more was all he said)

also check out all the lay outs for MyKBD (an input method for PalmOS 5)
http://1src.com/freeware/index.php?cid=52
I use this all the time on a Palm LifeDrive and have wanted a simular
app for my tablet.
With Palm due to realease a linux based operating system, there are
Huge possibilities for this app, with all the small touch screens on
the market.

On Jan 21, 2008 6:24 PM, aka. bugle <email address hidden> wrote:
> Chris,
> I was hoping I could get someone interested!! I have very little
> experiance programing... But I would love to help somehow.
> I didn't do anything with color of the keys This was just a quick
> 1st test layout...and I had a .sok for this but It got accidentily
> deleted... I'll recreate it...
> notes...
> A couple keys weren't mapped to anything...yet , is that a problem?
> I made 5 keys (middle bottom row) as space keys id# SPACE1-5
> There are 2 return keys RTRN1 and 2 (right nex to each other).
> the whole top row is F-keys and esc.
> The settings key (id# labled prog) and the button swap keys are on the
> bottom row as well next to the left control key
> Putting the F keys in the main layout pane saves a whole pane... I
> never got it to load so I don't know if its to busy or not.
>
> I have a HP TabletPC and I run Gentoo on it...
> Other questions...
> I'm running onBoard 0.8.7... should I upgrade to .8.8?
> I'm using 0.41 virtkey, as I had trouble getting 0.42 installed
>
> On Jan 21, 2008 4:13 PM, Chris Jones
>
> <email address hidden> wrote:
> > Your question #22698 on onBoard changed:
> > https://answers.edge.launchpad.net/onboard/+question/22698
> >
> > Status: Open => Needs information
> >
> > Chris Jones requested for more information:
> > This sounds like a good idea.
> >
> > Please attach the svg and i'll see if I can get it to work.
> >
> > --
> > To answer this request for more information, you can either reply to
> > this email or enter your reply at the following page:
> > https://answers.edge.launchpad.net/onboard/+question/22698
> >
> >
> > You received this question notification because you are a direct
> > subscriber of the question.
> >
>
>
>
> --
> Best Regards,
> ~david
>

--
Best Regards,
                          ~david

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #3

OK, it works but there is a bug.

Hexagon keys can be created with the Inkscape polygon tool but any moving or scaling of the polygon will not be reflected in Onboard.

This is because instead of transforming the points it creates a transform element for the object in the SVG to move the original points at creation to the new points.

Onboard currently does not parse the transform tag so the original points are displayed.

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #4

Chris,
Thanks for the test...
    Soooooo. If I created each hexagon at its predetermined point the
correct size, Onboard could interpret the object? (I created the grid
w/ a clone tool, could that have been the problem?)
  ~david

On Jan 22, 2008 10:33 AM, Chris Jones
<email address hidden> wrote:
> Your question #22698 on onBoard changed:
> https://answers.edge.launchpad.net/onboard/+question/22698
>
> Status: Open => Answered
>
> Chris Jones proposed the following answer:
> OK, it works but there is a bug.
>
> Hexagon keys can be created with the Inkscape polygon tool but any
> moving or scaling of the polygon will not be reflected in Onboard.
>
> This is because instead of transforming the points it creates a
> transform element for the object in the SVG to move the original points
> at creation to the new points.
>
> Onboard currently does not parse the transform tag so the original
> points are displayed.
>
> --
> If this answers your question, please go to the following page to let us
> know that it is solved:
> https://answers.edge.launchpad.net/onboard/+question/22698/+confirm?answer_id=2
>
> If you still need help, you can reply to this email or go to the
> following page to enter your feedback:
>
> https://answers.edge.launchpad.net/onboard/+question/22698
>
> You received this question notification because you are a direct
> subscriber of the question.
>

--
Best Regards,
                          ~david

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #5

Yeah cloning seems to cause elements like: "translate(17.563638,31.69091)" to appear in the XML which Onboard can't currently parse.

Creating each hexagon at its predetermined point should work but is time consuming. There might be a better way to generate the SVG, a script or maybe a different SVG editor.

I don't really have the time to look in to this right now as I have exams, though I will try to at some point.

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #6

Thanks Chris!
  Good Luck w/ your exams! I'll fiddle with Inkscape and see if I can create the grid manualy, I really want to see it in action!
 1 other question... Can the key font colours be changed to white (or some other shade?)
I'll post here if I have any successes
   again... THANK YOU!
     ~david

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #7

Crap... 2 more...
1.) the *.sok files seem to have no particular key order with in the individual panes... Does it matter that there is no order to the listed keys?
2.) If a .svg file has button element w/an item id# for a key, but that key is not defined in the matching .sok?

Thanks...
~david

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #8

Currently the font colours cannot be changed but this isn't hard to fix.

1. No, the order had no relevance it is the ID that is important which must match the object ID of the key in the SVG.
2. If an object exists in the SVG but not the .sok it will break. This is a bug.

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #9

Thank you Chris... for that! I'll make sure i use light colours for keys!

I'm getting some basic svg help at ...
http://www.inkscapeforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=511
 in particular ... changing the cloned hexagons to paths...
maybe.... I ain't givin' up!

Francesco Fumanti (frafu) said : #10

@DavidLuddy

I am following this with interest and hope that you will succeed.

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #11

Well I've managed to get a .svg with only hexagons as paths ( no more cloned hexagons). But I'm still not able to load the layout... I'm wondering if its cause I'm running 0.87 onboard and 0.41 virtkey.
Will these versions support the keys as paths instead of rectangles?
~david

Francesco Fumanti (frafu) said : #12

Here is version 0.88 of onboard in a ppa
:
deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/onboard/ubuntu gutsy main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/onboard/ubuntu gutsy main restricted universe multiverse

However, if I remember correct, the changes in the new version are related to make onboard behave better in conjunction to the auto-click application named mousetweaks. Thus it might probably not make any difference for your problem.

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #13

If you email me the layout files at skating.tortoise at gmail.com i'll try and debug them.

aka.bugle (aka.bugle) said : #14

Chris,
   Dude you ROCK!!!!! its loaded up and working with my test layout! hex keys... yowza.
  I've got to run out for an appointment, but when I get back I'll be cleaning up my .svg and .sok to fix a few little missing labels and working on some more legible colours.
      JUST AWESOME!
full report after a full test later....
~david

Francesco Fumanti (frafu) said : #15

Congratulations!

@Chris
What about making it available in your ppa and on hardy once it is finished and you have time?

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #16

yep, will do

T045T (berg-nils) said : #17

Hi, I was just about to ask a question about font colors, and launchpad sent me here first... Chris, you said changing them is not possible yet but not hard to do. What did you mean by that? Is it a TODO?
I'm not really in a hurry, though (probably not until this summer). I'd just like to know if it's going to be worked on or not.

Oh, and one more unrelated thing: are line breaks inside of keys (f.i. for Alt Gr) possible/planned?

That's it for now, I think (:

regards,
Nils

Chris Jones (tortoise) said : #18

yeah all those things are TODO at the moment. Hopefully get round to it over the Summer when I have more time.

Chris