Ideas for Quantified Self experiments

Once I will be reasonably confident that I have a semi-OK-baseline, it would be great to actually start doing stuff.

How to do self-experiments:

I’d also like to make predictions at the beginning, and to ask myself some question (how hard was it, do I feel deprived or tempted, etc). This will keep me focused

Those are the ones that I suspect will be very interesting and easy to do and formalize and with the biggest possible impact:
  1. Eliminating caffeine (ABAB)
    1. Semi-regularly but tracked except for tea (right now)
    2. Use caffeine+L-theanine systematically and see how (and when) does it influence the following: (for two weeks)
      1. CBS
      2. DNB
      3. typing speed
      4. General wellbeing(=mood)
    3. Phenibut 2-3 times in the middle of those two weeks
    4. Eliminate both caffeine and phenibut totally after that, for two weeks
  2. Jogging/exercise on sleep and mood the following day/night (I think I can do it at the same time as 1.)
  3. Creatine and citrulline on workouts and jogging (keep them consistent, 2-3 times a week, and just either take them or not, and see what happens)
    1. The workout/run itself
    2. Muscle soreness next day
  4. Food on cognition, especially a lot of it, especially junk food
    1. Not as experiment, just record it, and see what happens.
Not a priority but very interesting:
  1. No caffeine or alcohol for 30 days
  2. ISR every evening for 2 weeks
  3. Vegan for 30 days
  4. Intermittent fasting
  5. Mindfullness meditation every evening for 20 days
More abstract:
  1. Recite affirmations every day
  2. Activity alarm every 30 minutes
  3. MINDFULLNESS and outside
  4. Eat only on response of hunger
  5. Write 1000 words a day for two weeks

Over and out for now

Pchr8board (third update to the Dvorak Mirrorboard layout)


Now playing: Машингвери, штурмгевери


You might remember the last two posts about the Dvorak Mirrorboard layout. Well, I’ve updated it for the third time, and it’s gotten different enough that I think I can call it Pchr8board, just to have a better name and to reflect the fact that it’s made for my own personal use and not as some kind of general-purpose layout, though it could be a nice starting point for further changes.

Ladies and gentlemen, Pchr8board:


Keys without a legend have the same letters attached.

Otherwise, this is how you read the picture above:


The layout uses left alt as a Latch key, that, when pressed with left thumb, switches the letters to their corresponding right-hand letters, as per original Mirrorboard, but for Dvorak.

Other important changed keys are highlighted.

  • Enter and BackSpace are on the Tilde (“~”) key.
  • The Tab key allows to type forward slashes (“/”), mostly for searching, and diaereses (ümläüts) on the letter immediately following Shift+Latch+Tab (awkward at first, but not more so than the typical compose key approach).

The layout is usable as a typical Dvorak one, and I wanted to add a couple of more keys that I miss. For the right hand, there are:

  • Direction keys on the Latch+”htnc”, which are the base keys for the right hand
  • A Backspace key on Latch+r

I sorely needed both of those, since they required too much movement in a traditional layout. What’s also nice is that all the keyboard shortcuts still work, that is for the OS it doesn’t make much difference. Selecting words word-by-word using Ctrl+Shift+right_arrow as Ctrl+Shift+Latch+n still works, for example. In practice such chords are much less complicated and easier to get used to than they seem. Honest.

At first, I wanted to add the arrow keys to the left hand, but didn’t find a not-awkward way to do this. Next version, maybe. Another logical change would have been using hljk or someting, since this is what I use for my i3wm shortcuts, but, again, I think keeping it classic in this aspect would be more beneficial.

Installation instructions:

  • Copy to your key definitions folder (usually /usr/share/X11/xkb/symbols/)
  • Either just setxkbmap left3 or integrate it in whatever you are using (e.g. setxkbmap -option 'grp:rshift_toggle, compose:rctrl' left3,ru,ua)
  • In case you want to edit it, copy it every time to a new name. The layout gets cached to the DE, and for it to read the new changes you would have to reload X, unless it’s a new file. Or just during editing do xkbcomp mirrorboard.xkb $DISPLAY 2>/dev/null as recommended in the original post, maybe removing the last part to see any errors.

The layout is on Github.


The following resources helped me:




Exporting Cambridge Brain Sciences data

Now playing: Ry Cooder – Jesus on the Mainline

Cambridge Brain Sciences is a nice way to measure brain health. After quick (~10 minutes) tests, it gives you your score in three main areas (Verbal, Reasoning and Memory) and your C-Score, which is “the summary of your cognitive function”. It’s meant not as a semi-static measure (~IQ), but as a “how are you feeling today” kind of thing.

I use it both as a way to track/manage some depression symptoms, and as an objective way to measure how various things influence your mental performance (think exercise/nootropics/sleep/…). I wrote a bit about it and how I use it here.

It’s pretty awesome, but lacks a CSV export, or even just a way to get the data in a readable format, without having to hover on their charts. I wrote them (they are pretty responsive and open to suggestions, by the way) and they said that they will add that as a planned feature. I  didn’t want to wait (patience is not one of my virtues) and wanted to start running some analyses on the data I have, but didn’t want to it down manually. Hovering over the data points in their chart to get the individual data points would have been very very tedious.

Looking at the source code (and hoping to find some “data.json” or something similar), I saw that for their charts they use Highchart. After skimming the documentation, I wrote small and extremely basic javascript snippet that would output the dates and datapoints of the currently open chart:

To use:

  1. Open the CBS dashboard
  2. Open the developer console.
  3. Paste snippet above


Then, if you need the verbal/memory/reasoning data, just switch to that tab and repeat the process.

For individual tests the process is very similar.

The snippet is the same, but you need to change the “chart” parameter. Switch to the “Tests” page, then right-click on the needed graph, “Inspect element”. You are looking for the data-highcharts-chart parameter:


This is the number you need. Set it in the first line of the snippet (chart=” “) and run.

To work with the data, I pasted it into LibreOffice calc with the following settings.


You need the “Separated by space” and “Merge delimiters”.

That way, it gets outputted to different cells, and you can copy the ones you need. I’m sure Excel can do something similar.

To merge the AM/PM on the other cell, I used the following formula to convert the time:

with B37 as cell with the time, and C37 as cell with AM/PM.

I hope I’m not infringing any terms of service, it’s not even scraping — just accessing the data already in the graphs. And I am not doing a tool or Greasemonkey script out of this, because I think that I won’t need to do this often (I add the data manually at the end of each tests if I do them), but if there’s interest, I could do something more “beautiful” and portable — let me know!



Quotes for today

Straight from my quotes file, with sources mostly missing. But all of those are easy to Google.

“Experience by itself teaches nothing… Without theory, experience has no meaning. Without theory, one has no questions to ask. Hence, without theory, there is no learning.” ― W. Edwards Deming, The New Economics for Industry, Government, Education

Home is where the water tastes normal

You don’t need the cow to get the milk

It might be best to let go of finding meaning in life from your job. Try to find a low-stress slack job that pays the bills and leaves you energy to do other things, and then find meaning in life from those things. This will also allow you to shift from one interest to another.

The best thing about being a hybrid – you don’t have to be particularly good at either yet people are constantly blown away by the simplest things.

My personal belief (and mantra of creativity/slacking) is that if you do something people have never seen before, you will always exceed their expectations.

“It’s easy to pretend expertise when there’s no data to contradict you.”

В ДНР ожидаются серьёзные кадровые перестановки.  Но не те, о которых вы думаете.  Ожидающиеся перестановки будут сделаны, чтобы оттянуть те, о которых вы думаете.

“Hack Like Nobody’s Watching (because it is highly likely that nobody is watching)”

Pay more attention to what the losers do wrong as to what the winners do right

Title: somethingsometing (should be avoided)

And I will deny that I ever said this, but …
Aren’t you a little worried that there’s a hell?
Your original research was thought-provoking, although it would be considered felony in most states.
Generally you want your alibi not to be a witness at the scene of the crime. (Daria)

LPT: When you’re thinking about buying something you don’t necessarily need, imagine the item in one hand and the cash in the other. Which one would you take?

Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.   ~ Martin Luther King Jr.
A little inaccuracy sometimes saves tons of explanation.   ~ HH Munro
What is said when drunk has been thought out beforehand.   ~ Flemish proverb
If you buy the why, the how is infinitely bearable.   ~ Friedrich Nietzsche
Seek, above all, for a game worth playing.   ~ Robert S. de Ropp
The best use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.   ~ William James
Only the simplest mind can believe that in a great controversy one side was mere folly.   ~ AJ Kane

Practice choosing discomfort

Real men don’t need either condoms or antivirus

Welcome to the Internet. Consider this a threat.

My friend is epileptic. One time after her seizure I asked if she knew me. She looked up at me and eventually said “Mom?” in a very uncertain tone.  I’m a little younger than her and I have a beard.

Quantified self, data science, python, paranoia

Было чуть позже четырех дня, конец весны, коридор ██ корпуса был почти пустым. Я шел к ███-му кабинету.

Около входа я ее заметил. Она странно стояла, не в плане что совсем странно, просто иначе, чем я привык, что она стоит. Как человек с миопией в -5 диоптрий, я всегда обращаю внимание на походку и осанку, по ним проще узнать человека издали, чем по лицу, и увидев ее я сразу напрягся, что-то странно, что-то не так.

Я подошел, она стояла довольно нетвердо и смотрела на меня расширенными зеницами. В воздухе витал легкий запах дешевого плохого красного вина.

—Извините, █████ █████а, я хотел бы спросить можно ли написать допуск к экзамену по ██████ ██████.
— Ты … кто вообще?
— Я ваш студент, группа ██-██.
— У тебя сколько баллов сейчас?
Ради Бога, не упоминай, что у тебя 7 баллов из 30 нужных для допуска…
— Мне казалось вы меня помните?
— Баллов. С… склько? В… впрчм не ваажно, заходи.

В кабинете тот запах был еще сильнее, чем вне его. На столе стояли пустые пластиковые стаканы на салфетках.
— …если я открою окно, стнет жарррко, если оставлю закрытыми, то зпах останется. Что мне … делать?
— Что я буду писать?
— Вот …. твой вариант.
— Спасибо.

Она ушла.

Подошел к ней через минут 20.

— Я написал, вот …
— …д…да, сейчас проверю. В… впрчм не важжжно, дй зчу.
— Что?
— Двй зчтку
— Спасибо! 1 На дворе эпоха постмодернизма, отсылки на других авторов или самого себя святое дело:

The above may or may not describe the last time SWIM from another university had anything to do with data analysis, statistics, and empirical methods of software engineering.

This post shortly describes my current understanding of the basics of Quantified self / self tracking, how exactly I [am planning to] do this, how am I planning to analyze this, and what am I hoping to get from this.

Quantified self

EDIT: I do things now a bit differently, and I’ve split the big spreaadsheet file in multiple smaller ones; also I’ve ditched BWT in favour of classic gym workouts. But mostly this is still relevant.

For me, it all started with this excellent post by the creator of Wolfram Alpha, about how he tracked a lot of things for decades. It’s a very interesting read.

Quantified self (QS) is a movement / subculture / set of methods and approaches dealing with tracking various things about oneself, and then, hopefully, analyzing them, and getting interesting insights. One can think of QS as of a more targeted variant of a typical scientific study. I can read that “Scientific study confirms 5-HTP taken at bedtime improves sleep quality” or see “man, I swear, since I started doing Image streaming my memory, attention and weight have improved, girls started smiling at me, and I started speaking French!” on Reddit, or I can actually do an experiment and see if it improves my sleep (or French).

Some things don’t generalize, and if I find something that works for me (even though it doesn’t work for anyone else, isn’t scientifically sound, or doesn’t even make sense), it is still a very interesting discovery, if I can use it to make my life better. This guy discovered that standing on one leg until exhaustion improves his sleep, for example.

As someone who has been doing this for a couple of weeks, one of the more interesting discoveries is that my subjective estimates of my concentration, memory etc have very little to do with how well I can perform tasks that require them. Just now, I logged the following:


This is much worse than average, almost all of it. Then I took a typing test, and got the absolute best typing score of my entire life:


even though I was completely out of shape the last hour, or at least felt that way. The (lack of) correlation is even more strongly noticeable on tests which target memory / language / attention directly, such as Cambridge Brain Sciences (which I really recommend; short tests taking 10 minutes a day to get a feel of how your brain is doing, in three key areas).

Gathering data

I am currently doing it via a couple of methods.

The Spreadsheed

This is the monster in its entirety

It has two goals: productivity and self-tracking.


The top part is basic information about the day, such as number of pages read, time spent in bed, number of steps etc etc. I think I’ll be slowly removing it and using something else instead.

The first column uses the old method of dividing the day in 100 10-minute intervals and writing what are you doing in each of them. It allows, firstly, to see what I spend my time on, and secondly, it works really well as motivation. If you write that you are “procrastinating” six intervals one after another, you really start feeling bad. You don’t have the “Oh, it’s 10pm already, where did my day go?” moment at the end of the day, you keep track of your activities every-damn-10-to-30-minutes. It’s wonderful. (Sometimes, I use this timer video for this)

Except the column where I write keywords about my activities, separated by semicolons (not “I was talking with X in his room”, but “social; talking; real-life”, to make it easier to analyze later), in the first part I also log:

  • Location
  • People with whom I did this
  • Food eaten
  • It’s nutritional values, if I feel like it
  • Medicines / supplements consumed.


The next blue part are some typical depressive symptoms, mostly inspired by this “Depression progress tracker” with a couple of additions I felt were interesting or lacking. Another source for this was the Immediate Mood Scale, linked is the appendix with the complete list of the items, but the entire paper is interesting. Also, here are some interesting theoretical considerations about measuring mood — it’s true, the deeper you get into something, the more complicated it is.

  • Good spirits
  • Good about myself
  • Calm and relaxed
  • Active and vigorous
  • Appetite
  • Interested in activities
  • Focus & Concentration
  • Aggressive
  • Impulsive
  • Guilty
  • Withdrawn
  • Manic
  • Fidgety

There I also track my top three physical symptoms:

  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Stomach problems
  • Brain fog

All this on scales from 0 to 100. When I feel like it, or remember about it, or have nothing to do and feel like procrastinating.


How much, on what, and on which category. Additionally, recently added “how”, to differentiate shopping in real life with Amazon and similar ones. An inspiration for this was this blog post about the tracking, especially the idea of using the United Nations Classification of Individual Consumption According to Purpose for categorizing the expenses. It’s very well thought-out and definitely better than I could myself have made. It’s a nice reminder of not having to reinvent the wheel for everything I do, hah.


Anything I want to add about the 10-min interval. Just like a mini twitter-like diary.


In this area, I track DNB level and how many percent I got right.

I wrote just a bit about it here, but, of course, Gwern’s FAQ is the ultimate resource on the topic. Dual-N-Back is pretty much the only brain-training exercise which has been shown to transfer to other areas — that is, getting better at DNB actually means that the working memory in real life is getting better too.

…General Dreedle wants his [pilots] to spend as much time on the skeet-shooting range as the facilities and their flight schedule would allow. Shooting skeet eight hours a month was excellent training for them. It trained them to shoot skeet.
(From Catch-22, as quoted in the FAQ)

For me, it’s an exercise that hits right where it hurts — memory (short-term and working, I know that both are different but both are bad for me) and concentration (where else I get a 5-minute span where I can’t get distracted? Oh, meditation, about this later). Speaking of this, I knew that my memory was bad, but then comes Cambridge Brain Sciences and shows me daily workouts looking like this:

CBS on an unusually good day
CBS on an unusually good day; about their objectivity I have my doubts.

The “reasoning” and “verbal” subdomains float quite a lot, but the memory one stays low, always. It’s nice to know what you fail at.

I hope DNB will help me. But I fully agree with Gwern on this — DNB is really interesting as an exercise by itself, even if it’s hard. Anything which puts you on your limits and lets you stay there, to explore them and get a feel of them, is interesting.

I have been doing DNB for a couple of months, got from Dual-2-Back to 70% right on Dual-3-Back, but have no way of measuring if it affected my memory during that time. I hope I’ll be able to do it more regularly now.

For DNB, my favourite program for the desktop is this web app, and on Android there are a couple of apps, but I really like Brain-N-Back, for its immense configurability and lack of disrupting adverts.

Shulte table

I got into this back when I was learning speedreading. It’s used for development of speed reading, peripheral vision, attention and visual perception 2Wikipedia, but for me it’s another way to stay concentrated. And to use my time, say, in the Metro, productively. I track grid size and time in seconds. This is the app I use and it’s awesome, also very configurable and without ads.

Cambridge Brain Sciences Tests

I log my C-Score and the scores in the three main domains, and the scores on the individual tests.


This is because I don’t really trust the C-Score as an objective method of assestment. I know that just a couple of paragraphs above I have written that it’s nice not to reinvent the wheel, but there are a couple of things which I find illogical or just don’t understand. The main one would be that the tests change day-to-day, and I’m much better at some tests than at others. I don’t like that this (pretty predictable) variation is shown as, say, my “reasoning” score for the day. Just how fluctuating it is can be seen here:

Guess on which days are the tests I'm good at?
It’s clear on which days the tests are the ones I’m good at.

We’re talking about 6-7 points out of 23 max, which is a lot. On the “good” days, there must be one (or two) “good” tests, I’ll look later which ones.

Regardless, I think the scores on the individual tests are indicative of many things. It would be nice if CBS would offer their data in .csv format for easier analysis, but for now I’m stuck with entering the results manually.

Typing speed

Doing the tests using my absolutely favourite, the one that taught me Dvorak, and sometimes I take it as a measure of how overall in shape I am, but just how meanigful this is is one of the things I’d like to discover using QS. It’s easy to do and takes one minute, so no harm done either way.


Why not?

Body weight training

Partly motivational accountability, partly because it’s actually nice and interesting to track.

The relevant subreddit, and the cheatsheet I use for it all. I log at which exercise I am in the progression and how many repetitions (4-6) I did.

Other ways to gather data

Not everything  is practical to track in this cheatsheet. I use a couple of other programs, especially focusing on ones that allow exporting to .csv.

Nomie. Nomie is awesome. Like, really awesome. It has a number of trackers, which you can activate just by clicking on them (if needed — also set a value). Also the trackers can be set as positive/negative, and it shows the tally for the day. Examples of such trackers: Healthy snack, unhealthy snack, drinking alcohol, Manic, Anxious, peed, etc etc. And, of course, you can add your own. And it allows exporting to csv. It’s really great.

Selfspy — excellent Linux daemon which records everything you do, keystrokes, window names, etc etc etc.

Simple data logger with graph. For when I’m on the go, and when it’s something numerically measured, like weight, when it’s okay if it’s added to the data in the spreadsheet. (Measuring weight one time more is not as bad as marking “showered” both on Nomie and on the spreadsheet, for example.) Also allows exporting to csv.

Google Fit (previously — Pedometer) — number of steps, geographic location, basic movements etc. Pretty neat.

MyAddictometer — no export; it gives details about your phone usage, which can be enlightening.

Google Spreadsheets for Android — when possible, I attempt  to upload the spreadsheets to Google Drive, to be able to edit it on my phone. This Google app works really well for reading and editing LibreOffice Calc’s files, with all conditional formatting etc.

LastFM to CSV

In the future, I’d love to add a dump of my Telegram messages. (Here is a nice writeup on how to do that.) It’s data that already exists, and I could use it to infer basic stuff (sleeping patterns as one of them) without too much trouble. Probably the next post will be dedicated to it? Seeing when I write the biggest number of messages, to whom, etc. would be a very interesting exercise in visualization and data analysis.


The last hour, this happened.
The last hour, this happened.

Putting it all together

This is a big work in progress.

I’m planning to use it as a playground to remember Python and get a bit into Data analysis and statistics, I’ll need both in a couple of months.

Currently I have a shell script that converts all ODT files to csv. Then I have a python script (using the Pandas library, which is pretty neat) that divides the two parts of the spreadsheet — the “head” one and the tracking one. In the tracking one, it converts the times to datetime timestamps, and writes to a separate file %%timestamp%%-data.csv.


Next step (about an hour of work, given my three hours’ experience with Pandas) would be to append the data csv to a master data CSV file, if it hasn’t been already appended to it, and to make a master head-file, where rows would be days and columns would be the things I track daily, not in 10-minute intervals.

At the end, I should have a long CSV file with rows as intervals, and columns as data. And a couple of CSVs exported from various services.

Analyzing it all and actually making it useful

I really have no idea. At all.

TODO: remember my statistics course, remember my mad Python skillz, and start learning data science? (What better excuse could there be?)

Graphing it all would be pretty trivial, and maybe visually I could start seeing relationships or correlations. For this, there are a couple of web services: Fluxtream seems promising. It’s not the only one that can connect to various sources, get your csv input, and start doing magic. It’s a topic I really do need to research better.

I could start doing experiments, in their classic sense, but for that I’d like to estabilish a baseline, which is what I’ll do this month. Then start additng/removing supplements (topic for another post), BWT, changing diet, etc.

Ideas for possible correlations:

  • Sleep and pretty much everything, esp. C-scores and mood
  • Subjective feelings and C-Scores
  • C-scores and typing speed

Ideas for possible experiments:

  • Caffeine & L-theanine and C-scores and typing speed
  • Caffeine(~tea) after 6 pm and sleep
  • Alcohol and sleep
  • Running|BWT and sleep

For now, let’s focus on the tracking, and do it consistently (as strange as it sounds, I’m actually able to fill the spreadsheet every 10-40 minutes for the last 1.5 weeks; the apps will do their job by themselves, mostly.)

I should also really play with visualization (find my old Conky configs and fill them with TODOs and reminders?), since it works really well for motivation. Especially the once-a-day tracking. Part of a well-known effect, but was surprised to know there’s a subreddit dedicated to it. And something like this on my background would really motivate me:


And, lastly, just a dashboard on a terminal that I can switch to would also work wonders. … if I need a next step, research the motivation parts of it all, what visualizations work and why, what motivates me (is meta-quantifiedSelf a thing?), but we all know this won’t be happening, probably.

But again, all of this is far away.

If someone wants the current iteration of the spreadsheet — feel free to contact me, you’ll find how.

And, as usually, this post reflects my current view and understanding of the topic, everything subject to change (as it usually it does change). But that’s the beauty of this blog. Just opening the archives and seeing what I was up to two years ago is priceless. As Stephen Wolfram says on his blog:

And as I think about it all, I suppose my greatest regret is that I did not start collecting more data earlier.

I can say the same about this blog. I’m doing it not for the twelve and a half individual visitors a month that I’m getting, I’m doing it as writing practice (immensely therapeutical!) and as a way to record my very fleeting states of mind and interests for myself. And this has been going on for more than five years. Having the possibility of looking back is priceless and very gratifying. Given my awesome memory especially.

See you later with a full analysis of my Telegram messages!



Footnotes   [ + ]

1. На дворе эпоха постмодернизма, отсылки на других авторов или самого себя святое дело:
2. Wikipedia

Подоріжжя від Праги до Лемберґу — часть 1.

Продолжая многовековые традиции отсылок на все что угодно в названиях постов, сегодня у нас вьетнамский синдром флешбеки (достает очки, сосредоточенно листает какую-то тяжелую книгу) психопатологи́ческие репережива́ния или непроизвольные рецидивирующие воспоминания безособові повні односкладні речення з недоконаними дієсловами першої дієвідміни, вони кругом!!! по ЗНО и Панасу Мирному. Если вы сдавали не ЗНО, а ЕГЭ, можете вспомнить свое отличное произведение и тоже половить приятных воспоминаний.

Кстати о них, листая свою старую страничку ВК, нашел вот:

Цей рік завершився. Найважчий рік
З короткого життя, що прожив я
Забутий, стертий, втрачений навік
І не жалкую зА ним аж ніяк

Раммштайн в навушниках, у крові — кофеїн
Читання хрестоматій у метро
Наявність цілі у житті моїм
В кінці кінців закінчилось воно

Лежу, дивлюсь у стелю, друга ночі
Та сама стеля, ті ж червоні очі
Але я впевнений: ілюзія, лишень

Світогляд кудись дівся, звідкісь взявся
Я помінявся, світ теж помінявся
Сонечко встане, і почнеться новий день

(с) Я, ніч з 31/07 по 01/08 2013р.


И я отлично помню это состояние души. Когда есть что-то в обозримом будущем, на что ты бросаешь вообще все свои силы и всю свою энергию, а потом миссия выполнена, и все, и ты опять лицом к лицу с пустотой и свободой воли, от которых отвык и которые тебя почти пугают.

Вообще надо серьезно пособирать все мелочные стихи и переводы тех времен, ведь тьма их. Когда сублимируешь все нервы и ад в творчество, то творчества много и у тебя все хорошо. Мне даже как-то не хватает этой остроты видения всего, чувствования всего, сбалансированности и одновременно внутренней треснутости и дисгармонии, такой себе очень своеобразной экзистенциальной остроты и напряжения. Если вернуться в 11 класс мой, то прожил бы его вероятно ровно так же.

Моя стена ВК в те времена была очень занятной.

Пустота, хаос, пыль, бессонница, фрагментарность, потерянность, бессмысленность, мельтешение, дефокусирование, дизбалансированность, дизориентация, дискомфорт

Только песня совсем не о том, как не ладил Сережа с формальными стандартизированными способами оценивания знаний на предмет соответствия образовательным программам.

Прага и НАУКА

Попал туда на конференцию FedCSIS, которая была занятнешей на многих уровнях. Очень интересный город, и очень интересные люди. Язык чем-то похож на украинский, особенно если научиться его нормально читать (незнакомое слово становится РЕЗКО узнаваемым если произнести его). А сами правила пронунсиэйшн абсолютно тривиальны, на второй день уже читал спокойно.

How are you? (formal)
Jak se máte? (yahk seh MAA-teh?)
Fine, thank you.
Dobře, děkuji.

В моем мире четко вырисовывается континуум белорусский – русский – украинский – польский – чешский, что географически тоже имеет смысл.

Жил в прекрасной квартирке чудесной знакомой, фотографии которой совесть не позволяет выложить, но она вероятно одна из самых уютных квартир, где я бывал.

Конференция была невероятной, очень много возможности общаться с интересными людьми и вообще общаться. Из основного, что я вынес — я внезапно могу выступать на публику, и очень терпимо это делать. Познакомился с очень широким количеством вещей “что вообще существует в мире”, и поставил больше галочек чем влезет в этот пост. И развлекательная программа конференции была тоже очень на высоте, как и еда.

You don’t want to mix champagne with orange juice, what kind of scientist are you?

Самое классное — это когда ты не знаешь, с кем ты вообще говоришь, и отлично спокойно болтаешь на тему каких-то общих интересов. Бокал вина отличный фон для разговоров с людьми, к которым боялся бы подойти “в реальной жизни”. Он тебе рассказывает про Австралию / азы фотографии / историю языков Востока / … и вам обоим искренне интересно говорить друг с другом, потом ты находишь его на линкд-ине, находишь другие профили, h-index и т.п., и понимаешь, что вообще должен был бы быть счастливым, что находился с ним в одной комнате.

Я учил все для того, чтоб писать свои статьи. От карате до молекулярной химии. Все это делалось умными людьми, которые местами творчески решали возникшие проблемы — и они часто близки к тем, с которыми сталкиваемся и мы. И эти ими придуманные подходы можно или использовать прямо в гиперэвристике/кибернетике/комп.лингвистике и написать об этом статью, или обобщить и использовать в гиперэвристике/кибернетике/комп.лингвистике и написать об этом статью, или понять что это все фигня и не может работать для твоих целей, и тоже написать об этом статью.

Разговоры, много-много разговоров, обо всем на свете, с очень многими. Как на самой конференции, так и по улицам Праги, так и в каких-то совершенно левых генделиках, ночью во дворе университета, греясь чаем с термоса. Ну и по классике, задаешь чуть более глубокие и опасно личные вопросы, чем ритуализированный условный процесс общения разрешал бы, переходите к более глубоким и личным темам, чем вы оба ожидали, и ты понимаешь, что около-научные мысли/контакты это далеко не самое важное и самое ценное, что ты вынесешь из этой конференции.

На счет науки вообще — тоже приятное чувство, что не святые горшки лепят. Ты понимаешь, что способен понять большинство из того, что там говорилось, и что твоя научная работа там была не самой последней по качеству (хотя конференция, как я понял, medium-tier все же, не рога-и-копыта). И — что около-научная работа это невероятно интересно, черт возьми. Четкое осознание, что конкретно мой тип искры и творчества отлично подходит для такого плана деятельности. Анализ предметных областей, синтез всякого очень разного, создание чего-то на их основе, оперирование абстракциями — да это же то, что у меня стабильно очень неплохо получалось, причем всегда. И т.к. речь идет об ИТ, мне не нужно договариваться на счет лабораторий и реактивов и т.п. Я невероятно рад, что туда попал и это все осознал. Я еще не встречал области деятельности, которая настолько подходит к тому, что я умею делать и что мне нравится делать.

В конце конференции, простившись со всеми, двигаешься домой — и на вокзале видишь, что автобус домой тупо отменили, не сообщив об этом тебе.

И понимаешь, что настало время для первого международного автостопа.

Идешь в магазин, покупаешь еду, открываешь Библию на телефоне, и садишься на автобус в пригород. Вторая часть будет об этом.

Скооооооро кончится лееето

За окном идёт стройка, работает кран,
И закрыт пятый год за углом ресторан.
А на столе стоит банка,
А в банке – тюльпан, а на окне – стакан.

И так уйдут за годом год, так и жизнь пройдёт,
И в сотый раз маслом вниз упадёт бутерброд.
Но, может, будет хоть день,
Может, будет хоть час, когда нам повезёт.

Та же песня, что и ровно год тому. Она у меня связана с очень многим, на самом деле.

Помню лето в общежитии, абсолютно, тотально пустой. Общежитие маленького городка восточной Германии, летний вечер плавно переходящий в ночь, полное одиночество, кровать у окна. Зашкаливающее чувство пустоты, правильной и уместной пустоты.


And you know the earth could turn
Or crash and burn
And you would never know it

Очень правильное, во многом, лето. Именно “правильное”. Много понятого, много прочувствованого, много увиденного, много сделанного. Меньше чем хотелось бы, но лето было и будет таким себе предлогом to unwind, почувствовать какую-то пустоту, в хорошем значении слова.

Я жду ответа –
Больше надежд нету.
Скоро кончится лето.

Дописать недописанное, дочитать недочитанное, сделать стопку начатых книг меньше (дочитать или окончательно с чистой совестью бросить), оборвать всякие висящие ниточки (или нормально закрепить; но лучше оборвать).

Хрупкий, смешной, маленький человечек.
Просто герой одной пьесы абсурда.
Родившийся, но недостаточно вечным
И поступавший недостаточно мудро.

Ты слишком храбро доверял детским сказкам
С однообразной концовкой сюжета.
А за окном такой прекрасный и разный
Резвился мир…И растаманское лето.

А вдалеке белоснежные горы,
Пик ослепительный Килиманджаро.
И ты бежишь по пустым коридорам
Каменным, мертвым, квадратным кошмарам.

В самый конец. Дверь где лето беспечно.
Где солнышко в мячик трехцветный играло.
Но, то ли коридор почти бесконечный,
То ли времени стало удивительно мало.

И тут ты поймешь – все значительно проще.
Выбьешь окно, кинешь вширь руки-плети –
И никто не поймет, что же ветер полощет,
лишь чуть меньшее крыльев,
но в сто крат шире чем плечи.

И, когда ты будешь лететь над асфальтом,
А по нему глупо ехать машины,
Тебя спасет сохранит твое счастье –
Солнышко, мячик и снеговые вершины.

А потом… Ты только не жмурься от света…
Потом начнется растаманское лето.

(А. Непомнящий)

Notes about making my own calendar for 2018

My current small calendar is far from perfect, but has immense potential and I’ve been using it for almost a year. Next year (or month?) I will print out (on very think paper) a custom-designed one.

  • It will have the holidays important for me, birthdays important for me
  • Numbered days, weeks
  • Highlighted Sat/Sun
  • Some place over the months columns for ideas and more abstract plans
  • Probably basic contact information and basic phone numbers.
    • Ha, I can print it on A3 with fold-outs and just cut it out and fold it to А4?
  • I have time to think what else.

Solutions I found in 20 minutes of Googling:

  1. Time and Date has a very customizable generator – but not customizable enough for me (ha, what a surprise.)
    1. It takes care of all the math and basic holidays
    2. I can set most colours
    3. Can’t remove ()s in day numbers
    4. I’d need to treat it as image when leaving spaces etc etc
  2. This excellent LaTeX template, with most of what I could want but not full-full-full customization
    1. Holidays, Birthdays, other events defined in separate files
      1. I can see quite a lot of opportunities to use this
    2. Colours defined during generation, but some of them hard-coded in the class file (black border colour)
    3. Class file editable — after learning some Tikz I should be able to fit it to my needs perfectly.
    4. Colours:
    5. Would need some more math and care to make it start from another month — but do I need this?
  3. Doing it via one of the two variants above, then manually editing
The LaTeX template

Should take a couple of hours, but the result will be worth it. Leaving it like this for now, but in September will take care of this.

I can also envision different calendars for different purposes, if I will need them, and this would mean the possibility to create a “backup” calendar in case I lose my main on.

We’ll see.


Updated left-hand Dvorak Mirroboard keyboard layout! (Now with pictures!)

Now playing: Don’t stop believing by Journey

I updated my left-hand Dvorak Mirrorboard layout!

You might remember my last post on the topic, with the basic use cases and reasons why I bother.

This is an updated version of the layout, which I’m using now, with a couple of changes from the previous version:

  1. Different number keys
  2. Dead diaeresis/umlaut (öäëüï) on Shift+Mod+Tab (I need to type German from time to time, strictly for personal use).
  3. Fixed bug with []{} near the “real” backspace key, now they work!


How to read the image above:





The image of the layout was done with the absolutely excellent

Raw JSON of the layout:

Later on, when I will have time / will get inspired, I will write a general outline of my heavily modified keyboard layout, with a couple additional modifier keys, a couple of remapped keys, and how it al plays nicely with the i3 windows manager.

Up next, sometime, I should do a right-hand version. A bit less useful (still have to learn to eat with my left hand), but much more flexible in terms of functionality. I can reach much more keys with my right hand.

Over and out!


Plans for the summer + state of my projects

Now playing: Эй, ухнем!

This summer I would like to finish a couple of projects, or at least to bring them to some level where I can leave them alone. С глаз долой – из сердца вон, в общем. See what I can do with the others.



  1. Reasons for living
    1. I don’t think that the website as envisioned at the beginning would add value; keep it as random images/text pairings and nothing more
    2. Cleaner code, cleaner system for quotes (still textfile-based, but maybe with tags; or at least two textfiles, sfw-positive and nsfw-random?)
    3. Review the quotes and images
    4. Credit the persons who wrote the glitch scripts I use in the glitch version for images and text.
    5. Find as many sources for the quotes and the images
    6. Use-case: тупо залипать, Господи.
    7. Add there the current “take me somewhere interesting” thing from
    8. All this before the end of the summer
    1. Get back the domain
    2. Use as many scripts from SS as possible
    3. Generate names using various methods
    4. Check domains
    5. Not a priority
  3. Mirrorboard ☑ Here:
    1. Fix []s ☑
    2. Add arrow keys
      1. Or add a right-hand version where there are more keys available to the right



Borderline IT + Soft sciences

  1. Sparksara
    1. I still would like to make a creativity and divergent thinking tools website out of it
    2. Implement basic tools to help me learn some front-end scripting
      1. Research creativity
      2. Design that stimulates creativity (colors, sounds, combinations, …)
      3. Find existing methods, formalize them, and implement them
        1. Linking to the literature and studies supporting it all
        2. Be mindful of copyright?
        3. Tools like these, or like these.
        4. Examples of what exists:
          1. This
      4. Link to relevant resources and get links from relevant resources
    3. Think really well about the structure
    4. Not-so-basic tools and auth for possible monetization sometime later
    5. Have a niche blog about what I learn to learn to write and learn to make niche websites with ads.
    6. Before the end of the summer at least make a review of existing literature and a sketch of what exactly will make sense to implement
  2. WriteLikeLennon
    1. Would make sense only in VK as experiment
    2. Not too interesting technically and done before
    3. Kill it prolly?
  3. Gesturehand
    1. I can imagine it as a developed standard? Or a specification. Think RSS 1.0. Used as a semi-common language for gestures in many different contexts. Like there are certain expectations
    2. Think about ideating / writing a generalized system
    3. Probably the thing I’ll me concentrating on the most, and the one needing the most work
    4. Excuse to learn AI and ML?
    5. Try to at least get a shorthand system out of it.
  4. My shorthand system
    1. Create a name for it
    2. A small writeup on how it works and basics
    3. Intersections with Ithkuil
    4. Again have it as a version.
    5. It’s own /project page on
    6. All before the end of the summer


Soft sciences

  1. Pentachronological.
    1. I really have no idea.
    2. I could frame it as excuse to learn CSS3/frontent, to use my medium as much as possible, to express my creativity, whatever.
    3. Before the end of the summer see if I want to keep it up, if yes — definitely think about a plot and at least a direction.




Don’t forget all the many small ideas I get.

And when thinking what to do exactly, think more along the lines of “is it interesting personally for me” and “what is the potential for learning” more than “does it have an audience” and “will it earn money”?

And lastly, don’t work on too much at the same time. Priorities atm are Gesturehand and Sparksara.

Also think about that colored font for small screens.

Если ты сядешь, бабушка тебе Гешихте расскажет!

// нашел у себя в черновиках, написано около месяца тому.

В автобусе, потихоньку приближаемся к немецко-польской границе. Делаю все, чтоб писать диплом. Тошнит ужасно. Интернет советует, что если тошнит, то нельзя читать. Ха.

Очень радует мальчик, который сидит за мной. Лет 6. Моя полная копия в этом возрасте. Очаровательнейший немецко-русский суржик, у него и родителей, бабушки. Она пытается его развлекать, рисует картиночки, потом все угадывают, что это такое.

Это так классно, Господи.

— Будешь Айер?

У мамы явно муж прям немецкий немец, часто ему звонит, спрашивает, начал ли он уже о ней скучать.

Около-эмиграция это серьезно самый простой способ РЕЗКО сделать себе жизнь интереснее, навсегда. По моим наблюдениям и беседами с людьми, обычно это немного поломанные люди. Билингвизм и смена культур очень обогащает, но мне кажется, что гармония, которую дает относительно целостная социокультурная оболочка/матрица, тоже невероятно важна. Не буду излишне сильно уходить в эволюционную психологию и все такое, но излишне много путешествовать и сталкиваться с разными культурами человечество стало относительно недавно (шестое столетие до нашей эры?). Я могу себе представить что четкое ощущение ingroups/outgroups и принадлежания-чему-то-там нам немного более важны, чем плюшки, которые дает обрывание корней и сталкивания с совершенно другими реалиями.

НО это не относится к путешествиям! Как мы помним,

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.” (Twain)

Формула для счастья и успеха по жизни, в моем мире, это были бы периодические путешествия на пару месяцев-полгода, с целью максимум понаблюдать/понять, но в то же время с четким осознанием, что дом у тебя где-то есть, и что тебе есть, куда возвращаться

Vim, empty and blank lines, executing commands on regexes, ^M

It’s been quite a while since I wrote something in the Bits and Pieces category. I’m forgetting that the goal of this blog was partly documenting my own knowledge for my own use.Definitely need to hide this category from the front page and use it often. Or even better, make it a category on the wiki.

That said:

Vim digraphs

^M is how vim shows the 0xD character, which in Windows is a newline character. A more complete list of such characters is here:

One way to insert such characters would be: ^M is entered by holding down Ctrl and typing v followed by m, and then releasing Ctrl. 1

Interestingly enough, the keys above are represented via the <kbd> tag, which apparently is a thing:2

The HTML <kbd> element represents user input and produces an inline element displayed in the browser’s default monospace font.

Vim removing empty lines & executing a command on lines matching a regex

:g will execute a command on lines which match a regex. The regex is ‘blank line’ and the command is :d (delete) 3

Also interesting is the distinction between blank lines and empty lines. They could be defined as just '\n' and as a line with various spaces, but on visible content.

Footnotes   [ + ]


A translation of “Переведіть мене через майдан”/”Переведи меня через майдан”

Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan?

the last wish of the old kobzar1Blind street musicians playing the Kobza, a Ukrainian folk music instrument, for our purposes kobzar=lirnyk=banduryst

“Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan3For now “city square”; More about the connotations of this word, as I see them, further down
To the far side, there is a field,  I reckon
The bees hum quietly, a little piece of heaven
Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan

Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan
Where there’s laughter, fighting, feasts and food on shelves 2“shelves” almost makes me cry, but the third line is perfect, haven’t found any other normal rhyme….
Where no one hears, neither me nor themselves
Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan

Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan
There cries a woman; in the past we were together 4 Formerly “we’ve been together” but this would imply they are /still/ together
Now I’ll walk past, won’t even recognize her
Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan

Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan
With pain, regrets and love, still not forgotten
Here I’ve been brave, and here I have been rotten 5 sounds too much like passive and therefore weird, but whatever
Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan

Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan
The drunken clouds, they seem to touch my arm 6Adding meaning that was not there, but “Maidan” is hard to rhyme with anything. I also can see something like “Where drunken clouds are floating in the trees”
Now it’s my son who sings on the Maidan
Please, would you help me crossing the Maidan 7 Four identical rhymes – it’s a feature! increasing the DRAMA and stuff

Please, help…” The Maidan took him in
and led him by the hand,  and he kept walking
As he fell dead, right in the Maidan center
Not knowing there was no field anymore

Continue reading “A translation of “Переведіть мене через майдан”/”Переведи меня через майдан””

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. Blind street musicians playing the Kobza, a Ukrainian folk music instrument, for our purposes kobzar=lirnyk=banduryst
2. “shelves” almost makes me cry, but the third line is perfect, haven’t found any other normal rhyme….
3. For now “city square”; More about the connotations of this word, as I see them, further down
4. Formerly “we’ve been together” but this would imply they are /still/ together
5. sounds too much like passive and therefore weird, but whatever
6. Adding meaning that was not there, but “Maidan” is hard to rhyme with anything. I also can see something like “Where drunken clouds are floating in the trees”
7. Four identical rhymes – it’s a feature! increasing the DRAMA and stuff

Da chto vy /voobsche/ znajete pro metamodernism?


Laaaadies and gentlemen,
дамы и господа

Someday this may become something useful. It actually started as something useful. Like a website where you go and find positivity and stuff

I’m surprised that I’m surprised that given my current state it descended into post-meta-modernistic madness pretty fast

Anyway, it’s random images from L.’s “saved images” and random quotes from my quotes file (a bit sanitized, I admit).

Ты не доживешь до тридцати

Oh, and as a bonus to the readers of this blog, here’s the old design, with the pictures and text absolutely separated.

Залипаю уже минут 20



2017-03-26-233353_686x662_scrot 2017-03-26-233851_923x773_scrot 2017-03-26-234000_631x658_scrot

O, да, если уже началась такая пьянка,

Тупо тырит ссылки с моей вики, у которых оценка >=6, рендомно выводит.

EDIT 1: а еще можно вот так:

Glitch + фразочки из исходника файлика, без фильтра на счет “позитивности”/”оптимистичности”/”интересности”.2017-03-27-004050_611x783_scrot

Mildly related:

AI Curriculum

Two main focus areas for this year are gonna be AI/ML and Infosec.

I hope this post won’t be just a link dump, but look like and actual curriculum.

A Step-by-Step Process to Teach Yourself Anything (in a Fraction of the Time)

and for motivation



Research Guide

Additionally, a list of textbooks:
+, again,

Research Guide

Nice places to generally read even before I fully understand what it’s about:

Generally cool things to read/learn which may or may not be tangentially or directly related to this field:

who journeyed to Amsterdam, who died in Amsterdam, who came back to Amsterdam & waited in vain

Now playing: Dans le Port d’Amsterdam (ну очевидно же.)


21 год. Господи, господи, господи.

Два лейтмотива мыслей тут: 1) А давай организовывать свою собственную жизнь по пятилеткам! 2) десятилетие с 20 по 30 это то время, когда мозги наиболее гибкие.

А еще,


“My goal is not to wake up at 40 with the bitter realization that I’ve wasted my life in a job I hate because I was forced to decide on a career in my teens” (c) самый гениальный мультик в истории человечества.

Десятилетие свободы при относительном (в моем случае — почти полном) отсутствии обязанностей.


О важности этого десятилетия отличшейше написано на Art of Manliness (ч.1 и ч.2, особенно последняя). В этом возрасте мозги делают вторую и последнюю попытку решить, что нужно для счастья и успешной жизни, убирая лишние связи в мозгах. Чтó именно есть лишним — решается на основе той жизни, которая происходит вот конкретно в этот период. Изменения потом возможны, конечно, но даются ощутимо сложнее.

Basically, what this means is that the education, experiences, and relationships you choose to pursue in your twenties will determine the course of your brain’s synaptic pruning process.1

This final development of your brain is akin to getting a wiring upgrade – after it’s completed, the prefrontal cortex will run faster and more efficiently. But what you gain in speed, you lose in flexibility.2

Соответственно критически важно положить дорогу изначально в “правильном” направлении. А еще, из оперы “неиробиология для чайников”, neurons that fire together wire together (see Neuroplasticity). Еще, оказывается, Metaplasticity тоже существует: “The idea is that the synapse’s previous history of activity determines its current plasticity”.

Your twenties are in fact the perfect time for adventure and exploration, but the experiences you choose should have an element of intentionality.3

И именно об intentionality я хочу сегодня думать. Или, еще лучше, создать (=комбинировать идеи из религии, поп-психологии, психологии, неиробиологии и теории систем) framework, который мне может в этом всем помочь, но об этом дело будет идти в отдельном длииииииннннном посте.

21-26 лет

Этот период хочу посвятить работе над:

  1. Ответственностью
  2. Силой воли
  3. Силе в общем, глобальном, широком знании этого слова. Использование данных мне ресурсов разного плана для изменения мира вокруг.

Конкретно планы на след. год:

  1. Искусственный интеллект
  2. Информ. безопасность
  3. Программирование – тупо писать код, как же я давно этого не делал, Господи.

Далі буде, over and out! (Y)

Footnotes   [ + ]

Dvorak Mirrorboard layout (Based on Randall Munroe’s Mirrorboard)

Update: New version of the layout can be found here; it has a number of improvements and visuals. History & Rationale remain in this post, though, along with installation instructions.

Now playing: Shia LaBeouf by Rob Cantor.

It all started when I was looking into options for one-hand typing, simply because it seemed like a pretty interesting thing to learn. (I love the feeling of the brain rewiring, haha.)

I stumbled upon this blog post by Randall Munroe about his Mirrorboard layout.

The key moment was when I realized that the brain command I use to type the letter ‘e’ is very similar to the one I use to type ‘i’. I found that if I held my right hand away from the keyboard and tried to type “the kitten parked the hovercraft”, it came out “tge dettev qarded gte gwvercraft” — I was doing the same motions with my left hand that I’d normally do with my right.

Mirrorboard is a keyboard layout that lets you type simple things on a QWERTY keyboard with only the left hand. It works by mirroring the layout between the left and right hands when you press caps lock. “asdf” becomes “;lkj” — the entire keyboard is reflected. To press a key on the right side of the board, you hold caps-lock with your pinky and then press the corresponding key on the left side.

Which is actually really fascinating and true.

After Googling around, I did not find any Dvorak version of the keyboard layout, so I decided to make one. Learning quite a lot about xkb and Linux’s handling of keystrokes in the process.

Another reason to change it a bit was because I use a pretty complex keyboard setup, with dvorak+Russian+Ukrainian, a compose key, and multiple remapped keys on my keyboard, and I wanted to integrate left-hand typing seamlessly in my workflow.

Changes made from the original Mirrorboard layout:

  1. Made it Dvorak-friendly
  2. Left-alt is used as modifier key, instead of Caps. (Which is remapped as Ctrl on my keyboard).
  3. Return is Modifier+Tilde
  4. Modifier+Tab is “/”
  5. Modifier key is a Latch-style key instead of Shift-style key. (Basically, the difference between the two is that Shift-style keys work only when pressed together with the key that’s being modified, while Latch-style keys may be pressed before the key, or at the same time, or twice to “Lock” it until the next time you press it; Here’s an excellent explanation)
  6. Adapted it to contain only the modified keys, so it can be put in /usr/share/X11/xkb/symbols/our_dvorak_mapping and later used as just another keyboard layout, say,  setxkbmap -option 'grp:rshift_toggle, compose:rctrl' dvorak,sh-mirror3,ru,ua (right shift to change keyboard layout, right Ctrl as compose key)
  7. Maybe some other things I have forgotten

Additional resources that helped me in the process have been this excellent post on how to create your own layouts and the legendary Arch linux wiki.

The layout is on Github.

To use:

  1. Fit it to your needs
  2. Copy to your key definitions folder (usually /usr/share/X11/xkb/symbols/)
  3. Either just setxkbmap sh-mirror3 or integrate it in whatever you are using (e.g. setxkbmap -option 'grp:rshift_toggle, compose:rctrl' dvorak,sh-mirror3,ru,ua)
  4. In case you want to edit it, copy it every time to a new name. The layout gets cached to the DE, and for it to read the new changes you would have to reload X, unless it’s a new file. (That’s why sh-mirror3; same number of tries as it took this person I learned this fact from). Or just during editing do xkbcomp mirrorboard.xkb $DISPLAY 2>/dev/null as recommended in the original post, maybe removing the last part to see any errors.

Then I did a couple of changes to my i3, cvim and keynav configs, to make them easier to use with just the left hand.


Keynav is an excellent little program to avoid using the mouse. I divide the screen in 16 areas, and decided to move the lower ones to my left hand, used with shift. Relevant fragment is:

On my keynav 0.20170124.0 the areas seem to be numbered vertically, not horizontally as mentioned on the page linked above.


Cvim is my favourite extension that adds vim-like keybindings to Chrome.

I added a keystroke to change the hint characters to left-hand ones and back, which conveniently was exactly the example given by the author for JavaScript mode:

All of this is definitely a work in progress, but it was really interesting.

Current left-hand typing speed is 12WPM, compared to my usual 80, I wanna see how and if it will improve. It’s really not about actual use, but because it seems something cool to do. Something like shorthand-writing, which I’ve almost learned. I wonder what comes next. Dozenal counting, perhaps?