I don’t want to start a gear thread, but I just want to say that I think being afraid to spend $500 on important tools is ridiculous. I think about tradespeople who have to buy expensive equipment and tools (drill bits, etc.) to get the job done because the cheap shit simply won’t cut it. I have the same perspective on keyboard and mouse.
Kinesis Advantage and Rollermouse Red have been an incredibly important investment for my hand health.
Edit: I don’t mean to imply these are the only investments or improvements to make to your life. I think taking a holistic approach is important, but I know many people who are afraid to spend more than $50 on these tools.
I always strongly encourage people, even people without creeping RSI, to put some real thought, and possibly money, into their input devices. I switched to a Kinesis Advantage and a trackball in 2000, and I’ve never looked back, although I do suspect that the actual fixes for the hand problems had more to do with learning to mouse with different devices and different hands.
PSA: I have two Kinesis Advantage USB keyboards, and if any lobster in the GTA wants to try one, I’d be more than happy to lend one out for a couple of weeks or so.
I think I’m afraid that I’ll buy something that someone else loves but is incompatible with me. I love my Kinesis Advantage and it does far more for me than the kinesis Freestyle. However, my friend tried to use the kinesis advantage and could not get used to it because his fingers were much longer than mine and he could not easily use the bottommost row of keys. I bought the Kinesis Freestyle at work and tried to use the Truly Ergonomic Keynoard at home but I find the Truly Ergonomic keyboard to be very difficult to use with very little reward in term of pain alleviation. Because it’s really hit or miss if you get benifits for this and the cost is a month of productivity and $300+, it’s kind of hard to say it’s worth it until you really start having pain. I had mild discomfort and the fact that work would pay for a keyboard convinced me to try out a bunch and they were okay with me taking Tim to try new keyboards and expected me to not churn out code like I normally do.
Fwiw, maltron, who make a similar keyboard, allow you to rent the keyboard on a monthly basis. Then if you like it, you can buy the remaining cost.
Here’s the book he keeps referencing on Amazon.
Oops, fixed it in the post.