Linux on an iPad

Pop! OS on an iPad

I recently “upgraded” an old 2009 Macbook Pro with Elementary OS, a fantastic Linux distribution. This led me down the distro hopping path, exploring way too many different Linux distros on my primary 2013 Macbook Pro using Parallels.

Then it occurred to me that to try out Linux on my iPad, just for kicks. Turns out it works great, provided you have a tool to run virtual machines and a Luna Display adapter. Above is a screenshot of my iPad displaying Pop! OS via my Macbook. Maybe this isn’t the most useful thing in the world, but it’s pretty cool to use my Apple pencil on Linux.

As an aside, my forays into Linux have been so enjoyable that I’m strongly considering switching to a System76 machine when my Macbook Pro kicks the bucket. I hope to hold out until System76 launches their first in-house designed laptops.

Ergodox EZ and Arrow Keys

I bought an Ergodox EZ Glow ergonomic mechanical keyboard in 2019 and I’ve grown to love it. It took me some time to adjust to a split keyboard, and even more time to nail down my personalized layout across three different programmed layers. The unmarked keys on the board did not take as much time to adjust to as I thought they would. I purchased the black model with Cherry MX Brown switches, and upgraded to Blue Zilent switches and gray/blue keycaps. Dreamy.

But after months of using this keyboard, there was one thing I could just not get used to: switching layers to get to the arrow keys. I never realized how often I use arrow keys until they weren’t easily accessible. My solution was to get a tiny six key customizable keyboard from TechKeys. It fits perfectly in between the two keyboard halves. In addition to the arrow keys, I programmed the top left and right keys with an extra shift and space, because it’s often quicker to tap the tiny board when arrowing around. I think it’s an amazing set-up.

Now I just need to get some custom keycaps for the tiny board. I’m currently using leftover keys from my Vortex Race 3. Why two mechanical keyboards? I have a standing desk station and a sitting desk station. I use the Vortex while sitting, the Ergodox while standing. Excessive? Perhaps. But the Ergodox is not the easiest keyboard to move around, so this works for me. Plus … I just love mechanical keyboards. It’s a bit of an addiction.