KMonad is an advanced tool that lets you infinitely customize and extend the functionalities of almost any keyboard. For a detailed list of features, see here.

If you want to get started with the latest, stable binary release, please check out the master branch, if you are interested in the latest additions and tweaks, switch on over to develop and compile your own binary.

Additionally, if you need any help or just want to say hi, you can join our Discord server or jump into our IRC channel (, which is also bridged with matrix (


KMonad offers advanced customization features such as layers, multi-tap, tap-hold, and much more. These features are usually available at the hardware level on the QMK-firmware enabled keyboards. However, KMonad allows you to enjoy such features in virtually any keyboard by low-level system manipulations.

For a good introduction to KMonad, have a look at this Youtube video.

Key Customizations

KMonad lets you map any keyboard button to any keymap. Want to swap the useless Caps Lock key with the Escape key? Want to have your modifiers such as Shift and Control on your home row, without breaking your normal typing flow? Want a modifier that is combination of Alt + Ctrl + Super + Shift? You can do all of those and much more!


A layer is a set of keymaps assigned to your keyboard’s buttons. You can have as many layers on top of your base layer as you want. For instance, you can have your regular QWERTY layout, a Colemak/ Dvorak layout, a numbers and symbols layer, a function keys layer, a layer for mouse navigation and system controls — all in a 60% keyboard. When a particular layer is active, any keypress is interpreted according to the layout defined in that layer. With proper configurations, you can jump to a specific layer or switch to one for the next keypress, or do various other complex manipulations.

Multi-Use and Multi-Tap Buttons

One of the distinguishing features of KMonad is the vast capabilities with Multi-Use Buttons. You can have a single button do different things based on whether it is pressed quickly in succession, or pressed once, or held. For example, you can configure the Caps Lock key to act as an Escape button when pressed once and released, a Ctrl modifier when held-down, and a button to jump to a layer when pressed twice quickly in succession. You can make the left and right Shift keys to act like left and right parentheses (like the Space Cadet Shift keys) when tapped once, and regular Shift keys when held down. The possibilities are infinite!

Command Buttons

With Command Buttons you can trigger shell commands with a tap of any button.

And More!

There are many more exciting features of KMonad that you can find in the configuration tutorial.


For more information on how to install KMonad, please refer to: - installation


For information on how to configure KMonad, please refer you to: - the configuration tutorial - user configurations

Want to add your own keyboard configuration to kmonad-contrib? Just fork the repository, create a new subdirectory using your GitHub username and submit a pull request!

Editor Support for the Configuration Language


There are startup scripts available for different init systems in startup.


For several commonly asked questions regarding various configuration issues, please see: - the FAQ


The core maintainer is currently chronically ill with debilitating autoimmune symptoms. They come and go, but when they are there they very much get in the way of concentrated work. It is very much his intent to keep working on KMonad until it is very, very good. But please be aware that he might be gone for weeks on end, not out of a lack of interest, but out of a lack of capacity. You are always free to reach out to him by email.


` #| ————————————————————————–

                          KMonad: Guided tour

Welcome to the KMonad configuration tutorial. This document aims to explain: 1. The configuration syntax 2. The required information 3. All possible configuration options

This document should be a runnable configuration, so with some tweaks to the defcfg block (see below) you should be able to try out all the examples interactively.

————————————————————————– |#

#| ————————————————————————–

                 Basic syntax: comments and parentheses

KMonad’s configuration language is styled on various lisps, like scheme or Common Lisp. In a lisp, every statement is entered between ‘(’ and ’)’s. If you are more used to Fortan style languages (python, ruby, C, Java, etc.), the change is quite straightforward: the function name moves into the parentheses, and you don’t use commas to separate arguments. I.e.

This: my_function(a, 3, “Alakazam”) Becomes: (my_function a 3 “Alakazam”)

The reason for this is because Lisp-style languages are very easy to parse and write syntax-highlighters for.

We also provide standard Lisp syntax for comments: - block comments between: #| and its reverse - line comments following: ;;

Unlike standard lisp, a single ; does not denote a comment, but instead the keycode for semicolon.

Also, as you might have noticed, whitespace is possible anywhere.

To check for syntax errors while editing, invoke kmonad with the -d option. ————————————————————————– |#

#| ————————————————————————– Necessary: the defcfg block

There are a few bits of information that are required to be present in a KMonad configuration file. One of these is the existence of exactly 1 defcfg statement. This statement is used to customize various configuration settings. Many of these settings have default values, but a minimal definition must include at least an ‘input’ field and an ‘output’ field. These describe how KMonad captures its inputs and how it emits its outputs.

First, let’s go over the optional, non-OS specific settings. Currently there is only 2:

There are also some optional OS specific settings that we support:

Secondly, let’s go over how to specify the input and output fields of a defcfg block. This differs between OS’es, and so do the capabilities of these interfaces.

– Linux ——

In Linux we deal with input by performing an ioctl-grab on a specific device-file. This allows us to hook KMonad on the input of exactly 1 keyboard, and allows you to run multiple instances of KMonad for different keyboards. We make an input using: (device-file “/dev/input/by-id/my-keyboard-kbd”)

NOTE: Any valid path to a device-file will work, but it is recommended to use the ‘by-id’ directory, since these names will not change if you replug the device.

We deal with output by creating a ‘uinput’ device. This requires that the ‘uinput’ kernel module is loaded. The easiest way to ensure this is by calling ‘sudo modprobe uinput’. We create a uinput device using: (uinput-sink “name” “optional post-init command”)

– Windows —-

In Windows we do not get such fine-grained control. We use a low-level keyboard hook to intercept all non-injected keyboard events. There is currently an open issue to improve the C-bindings used to capture windows keyevents, and if you have a better way to approach this issue, help is deeply appreciated. You specify a windows input using: (low-level-hook)

Similarly, the output in Windows lacks the fine-grained control. We use the SendEvent API to emit key events directly to Windows. Since these are ‘artificial’ events we won’t end up catching them again by the low-level-hook. It is very likely that KMonad does not play well with other programs that capture keyboard input like AHK. You specify windows output using: (send-event-sink)

– Mac OS —–

For Mac questions I suggest filing an issue and tagging @thoelze1, he wrote the MacOS API. However, input using: (iokit-name “optional product string”)

By default this should grab all keyboards, however if a product string is provided, KMonad will only capture those devices that match the provided product string. If you would like to provide a product string, you can run `make; ./list-keyboards’ in c_src/mac to list the product strings of all connected keyboards.

You initialize output on MacOS using: (kext)

————————————————————————– |#

(defcfg ;; For Linux input (device-file “/dev/input/by-id/usb-04d9_daskeyboard-event-kbd”) output (uinput-sink “My KMonad output” ;; To understand the importance of the following line, see the section on ;; Compose-key sequences at the near-bottom of this file. “/run/current-system/sw/bin/sleep 1 && /run/current-system/sw/bin/setxkbmap -option compose:ralt”) cmp-seq ralt ;; Set the compose key to `RightAlt’ cmp-seq-delay 5 ;; 5ms delay between each compose-key sequence press

;; For Windows ;; input (low-level-hook) ;; output (send-event-sink)

;; For MacOS ;; input (iokit-name “my-keyboard-product-string”) ;; output (kext)

;; Comment this if you want unhandled events not to be emitted fallthrough true

;; Set this to false to disable any command-execution in KMonad allow-cmd true )

#| ————————————————————————– Necessary: the defsrc block

It is difficult to explain the defsrc block without immediately going into deflayer blocks as well. Essentially, KMonad maps input-events to various internal actions, many of which generate output events. The defsrc block explains the layout on which we specify our deflayers down the line.

It is important to realize that the defsrc block doesn’t necessarily have to coincide with your actual input keyboard. You can specify a full 100% defsrc block, but only use a 40% keyboard. This will mean that every deflayer you specify will also have to match your 100% defsrc, and that your actual keyboard would be physically unable to trigger about 60% of your keymap, but it would be perfectly valid syntax.

The dual of this (and more useful) is that it is also perfectly valid to only specify that part of your keyboard in defsrc that you want to remap. If you use a 100% keyboard, but don’t want to remap the numpad at all you can simply leave the numpad out of your defsrc, and it should work just fine. In that particular case you probably want to set fallthrough to true in your defcfg block though.

In the future we would like to provide support for multiple, named defsrc blocks, so that it becomes easier to specify various layers for just the numpad, for example, but at the moment any more or less than 1 defsrc block will result in an error.

The layouting in the defsrc block is completely free, whitespace simply gets ignored. We strive to provide a name for every keycode that is no longer than 4 characters, so we find that laying out your keymap in columns of 5 works out quite nicely (although wider columns will allow for more informative aliases, see below).

Most keycodes should be obvious. If you are unsure, check ‘./src/KMonad/Keyboard/Keycode.hs’. Every Keycode has a name corresponding to its Keycode name, but all lower-case and with the ‘Key’ prefix removed. There are also various aliases for Keycodes starting around line 350. If you are trying to bind a key and there is not a 4-letter alias, please file an issue, or better yet, a pull-request, and it will be added promptly.

Also, you can consult ‘./keymap/template/’ for various input templates to use directly or to look up keycodes by position. Here we use the input-template for ‘us_ansi_60.kbd’

————————————————————————– |#

(defsrc grv 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = bspc tab q w e r t y u i o p [ ]
caps a s d f g h j k l ; ’ ret lsft z x c v b n m , . / rsft lctl lmet lalt spc ralt rmet cmp rctl )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional : defalias statements

KMonad will let you specify some very specific, crazy buttons. These definitions can get pretty long, though, and would make deflayer blocks nearly impossible to read. Therefore we provide the ability to alias names to these buttons, to keep the actual deflayer statements orderly.

A defalias can contain any number of aliases, and it can refer backwards or forwards to layers without issue. The only sequencing that needs to be kept in mind is that a defalias cannot refer forward to another defalias that is not yet defined.

Here we define a few aliases, but we will define more later. Notice that we try to only use 3 letter names for aliases. If that is not enough to be clear, consider widening all columns to 6 or 7 characters (or be content with a messy config).

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias num (layer-toggle numbers) ;; Bind num to a button that switches to a layer kil C-A-del ;; Bind kil to a button that Ctrl-Alt-deletes )

#| NOTE: The above code could just as easily have been written as: (defalias num (layer-toggle numbers)) (defalias kil C-A-del) |#

#| ————————————————————————– Necessary: at least 1 deflayer block

As explained in the defsrc section, a deflayer will define a button for each corresponding entry in the defsrc definition. A deflayer statement consists of the deflayer keyword, followed by the name used to identify this layer, followed by N ‘statements-that-evaluate-to-a-button’, where N is exactly how many entries are defined in the defsrc statement.

It is also important to mention that the ‘keymap’ in KMonad is modelled as a stack of layers (just like in QMK). When an event is registered we look in the top-most layer for a handler. If we don’t find one we try the next layer, and then the next.

Exactly what ‘evaluates-to-a-button’ will be expanded on in more detail below. There are very many different specialist buttons in KMonad that we will touch upon. However, for now, these 4 are a good place to begin:

  1. Any keycode evaluates to a button that, on press, emits the press of that keycode, and on release, emits the release of that keycode. Just a ‘normal’ button. The exception is ‘', which gets used as an escape character. Use’\’ instead. Other characters that need to be escaped to match the literal character are ‘(’, ‘)’, and ’_’.

  2. An @-prefixed name evaluates to an alias lookup. We named two buttons in the defalias block above, we could now refer to these buttons using @num and @kil. This is also why we only use alias-names no longer than 3 characters in this tutorial. Also, note that we are already referencing some aliases that have not yet been defined, this is not an issue.

  3. The ’_’ character evaluates to transparent. I.e. no handler for that key-event in this layer, causing this event to be handed down the layer stack to perhaps be handled by the next layer.

  4. The ‘XX’ character evaluates to blocked. I.e. no action bound to that key-event in this layer, but do actually catch event, preventing any underlying layer from handling it.

Finally, it is important to note that the first deflayer statement in a KMonad config will be the layer that is active when KMonad starts up.

————————————————————————– |#

(deflayer qwerty grv 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = bspc tab q w e r t y u i o p [ ]
caps a s d f g h j k l ; ’ ret lsft z x c v b n m , . / rsft lctl @num lalt spc ralt rmet @sym @tst )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: as many layers as you please

We had already defined num as referring to a (layer-toggle numbers). We will get into layer-manipulation soon, but first, let’s just create a second layer that overlays a numpad under our right-hand.

To easily specify layers it is highly recommended to create an empty deflayer statement as a comment at the top of your config, so you can simply copy-paste this template. There are also various empty layer templates available in the ‘./keymap/template’ directory.

————————————————————————– |#

(deflayer numbers _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ XX / 7 8 9 - _ _ _ _ _ _ XX * 4 5 6 + _ _ ( ) . XX 0 1 2 3 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: modded buttons

Let’s start by exploring the various special buttons that are supported by KMonad by looking at ‘modded’ buttons, that is to say, buttons that activate some kind of ‘mod’, then perform some button, and finally release that ‘mod’ again.

We have already seen an example of this style of button, our kil button is one such button. Let’s look at it in more detail: C-A-del

This looks like a simple declarative statement, but it’s helpful to realize that is simply syntactic sugar around 2 function calls. This statement is equivalent to: (around ctl (around alt del))

This highlights a core design principle in KMonad: we try to provide very simple buttons, and then we provide rules and functions for combining them into new buttons. Although note: still very much a work in progress.

So, looking at this statement: (around foo bar)

Here, around is a function that takes two buttons and creates a new button. This new button will, on a press, first press foo, then press bar, and on a release first release bar, and then foo. Once created, this new button can be passed to anything in KMonad that expects a button.

We have already seen other examples of modded buttons, (, ), *, and +. There are no Keycodes for these buttons in KMonad, but they are buttons. They simply evaluate to (around lsft x). All shifted numbers have their corresponding characters, the same is true for all capitals, and < > : ~ ” | { } _ + and ?.

To wrap up ‘modded-buttons’, let’s look back at C-A-del. We have 8 variants: C- : (around lctl X) A- : (around lalt X) M- : (around lmet X) S- : (around lsft X)

Then RC-, RA-, RM-, and RS- behave exactly the same, except using the right-modifier.

These can be combined however you please: C-A-M-S-x ;; Perfectly valid C-% ;; Perfectly valid: same as C-S-5 C-RC-RA-A-M-S-RS-m ;; Sure, but why would you?

Also, note that although we provide special syntax for certain modifiers, these buttons are in no way ‘special’ in KMonad. There is no concept of ‘modifier’. (around a (around b c)) ;; Perfectly valid

————————————————————————– |#


;; Something useful cpy C-c pst C-v cut C-x

;; Something silly md1 (around a (around b c)) ;; abc md2 (around a (around lsft b)) ;; aB md3 C-A-M-S-l md4 (around % b) ;; BEWARE: %B, not %b, do you see why? )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: sticky keys

KMonad also support so called “sticky keys”. These are keys that will behave as if they were pressed after just tapping them. This behaviour wears off after the next button is pressed, which makes them ideal for things like a quick control or shift. For example, tapping a sticky and then pressing abc' will result inAbc’.

You can create these keys with the `sticky-key’ keyword:

  slc (sticky-key 500 lctl))

The number after `sticky-key’ is the timeout you want, in milliseconds. If a key is tapped and that time has passed, it won’t act like it’s pressed down when we receive the next keypress.

It is also possible to combine sticky keys. For example, to get a sticky shift+control you can do

  ssc (around
       (sticky-key 500 lsft)
       (sticky-key 500 lctl)))

————————————————————————– |#

;; Let’s make both shift keys sticky (defalias sl (sticky-key 300 lsft) sr (sticky-key 300 rsft))

;; Now we define the ‘tst’ button as opening and closing a bunch of layers at ;; the same time. If you understand why this works, you’re starting to grok ;; KMonad. ;; ;; Explanation: we define a bunch of testing-layers with buttons to illustrate ;; the various options in KMonad. Each of these layers makes sure to have its ;; buttons not overlap with the buttons from the other layers, and specifies all ;; its other buttons as transparent. When we use the nested around statement, ;; whenever we push the button linked to ‘@tst’ (check qwerty layer, we bind ;; it to rctl), any button we press when holding rctl will be pressed in the ;; context of those 4 layers overlayed on the stack. When we release rctl, all ;; these layers will be popped again. (defalias tst (around (layer-toggle macro-test) (around (layer-toggle layer-test) (around (layer-toggle around-next-test) (around (layer-toggle command-test) (layer-toggle modded-test))))))

(deflayer modded-test _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @md4 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @md1 @md2 @md3 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @cut @cpy @pst _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: tap-macros

Let’s look at a button we haven’t seen yet, tap-macros.

tap-macro is a function that takes an arbitrary number of buttons and returns a new button. When this new button is pressed it rapidly taps all its stored buttons in quick succesion except for its last button, which it only presses. This last button gets released when the tap-macro gets released.

There are two ways to define a tap-macro, using the tap-macro function directly, or through the #() syntactic sugar. Both evaluate to exactly the same button.

(tap-macro K M o n a d)
#(K M o n a d)

If you are going to use a tap-macro to perform a sequence of actions inside some program you probably want to include short pauses between inputs to give the program time to register all the key-presses. Therefore we also provide the ‘pause’ function, which simply pauses processing for a certain amount of milliseconds. Pauses can be created like this:

(pause 20)

You can also pause between each key stroke by specifying the :delay' keyword, as well as a time in ms, at the end of atap-macro’:

(tap-macro K M o n a d :delay 5)
#(K M o n a d :delay 5)

The above would be equivalent to e.g.

(tap-macro K P5 M P5 o P5 n P5 a P5 d)

The tap-macro-release is like tap-macro, except that it waits to press the last button when the tap-macro-release gets released. It might be useful when combined with a footswitch that sends keybooard scan codes.

(tap-macro-release i K M o n a d esc)


I know it might be tempting to store your password as a macro, but there are 2 huge risks: 1. You accidentally leak your config and expose your password 2. Anyone who knows about the button can get clear-text representation of your password with any text editor, shell, or text-input field.

Support for triggering shell commands directly from KMonad is described in the command buttons section below.

This concludes this public service announcement.

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias mc1 #(K M o n a d) mc2 #(C-c P50 A-tab P50 C-v) ;; Careful, this might do something mc3 #(P200 h P150 4 P100 > < P50 > < P20 0 r z 1 ! 1 ! !) mc4 (tap-macro a (pause 50) @md2 (pause 50) c) mc5 (tap-macro-release esc esc esc) mc6 #(@mc3 spc @mc3 spc @mc3) )

(deflayer macro-test _ @mc1 @mc2 @mc3 @mc4 @mc5 @mc6 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: layer manipulation

You have already seen the basics of layer-manipulation. The layer-toggle button. This button adds a layer to the top of KMonad’s layer stack when pressed, and removes it again when released. There are a number of other ways to manipulate the layer stack, some safer than others. Let’s go through all of them from safest to least safe:

layer-toggle works as described before, 2 things to note: 1. If you are confused or worried about pressing a key, changing layers, and then releasing a key and this causing issues: don’t be. KMonad handles presses and releases in very different ways. Presses get passed directly to the stacked keymap as previously described. When a KMonad button has its press-action triggered, it then registers a callback that will catch its own release before we ever touch the keymap. This guarantees that the button triggered by the press of X will be the button whose release is triggered by the release of X (the release of X might trigger other things as well, but that is besides the point.) 2. If layer-toggle can only ever add and then necessarily remove 1 layer from the stack, then it will never cause a permanent change, and is perfectly safe.

layer-delay, once pressed, temporarily switches to some layer for some milliseconds. Just like layer-toggle this will never permanently mess-up the layer stack. This button was initially implemented to provide some ‘leader-key’ style behavior. Although I think in the future better solutions will be available. For now this will temporarily add a layer to the top of the stack: (layer-delay 500 my-layer)

layer-next, once pressed, primes KMonad to handle the next press from some arbitrary layer. This aims to fill the same usecase as layer-delay: the beginnings of ‘leader-key’ style behavior. I think this whole button will get deleted soon, because the more general around-next now exists (see below) and this is nothing more than: (around-next (layer-toggle layer-name)) Until then though, use layer-next like this: (layer-next layer-name)

layer-switch: change the base-layer of KMonad. As described at the top of this document, the first deflayer statement is the layer that is active when KMonad starts. Since layer-toggle can only ever add on and remove from the top of that, it can never change the base-layer. The following button will unregister the bottom-most layer of the keymap, and replace it with another layer. (layer-switch my-layer)

This is where things start getting potentially dangerous (i.e. get KMonad into an unusuable state until a restart has occured). It is perfectly possible to switch into a layer that you can never get out of. Or worse, you could theoretically have a layer full of only XXs and switch into that, rendering your keyboard unuseable until you somehow manage to kill KMonad (without using your keyboard).

However, when handled well, layer-switch is very useful, letting you switch between ‘modes’ for your keyboard. I have a tiny keyboard with a weird keymap, but I switch into a simple ‘qwerty’ keymap shifted 1 button to the right for gaming. Just make sure that any ‘mode’ you switch into has a button that allows you to switch back out of the ‘mode’ (or content yourself restarting KMonad somehow).

layer-add and layer-rem. This is where you can very quickly cause yourself a big headache. Originally I didn’t expose these operations, but someone wanted to use them, and I am not one to deny someone else a chainsaw. As the names might give away: (layer-add name) ;; Add a layer to the top of the stack (layer-rem name) ;; Remove a layer by name (noop if no such layer)

To use layer-add and layer-rem well, you should take a moment to think about how to create a layout that will prevent you from getting into situations where you enter a key-configuration you cannot get out of again. These two operations together, however, are very useful for activating a permanent overlay for a while. This technique is illustrated in the tap-hold overlay a bit further down.

————————————————————————– |#


yah (layer-toggle asking-for-trouble) ;; Completely safe nah (layer-add asking-for-trouble) ;; Completely unsafe

ld1 (layer-delay 500 numbers) ;; One way to get a leader-key ld2 (layer-next numbers) ;; Another way to get a leader key

;; NOTE, this is safe because both qwerty and colemak contain the @tst ;; button which will get us to the layer-test layer, which itself contains ;; both @qwe and @col. qwe (layer-switch qwerty) ;; Set qwerty as the base layer col (layer-switch colemak) ;; Set colemak as the base layer ) (deflayer layer-test @qwe _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @add _ @nah @col _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @yah _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @ld1 @ld2 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ )

;; Exactly like qwerty, but with the letters switched around (deflayer colemak grv 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = bspc tab q w f p g j l u y ; [ ]
@xcp a r s t d h n e i o ’ ret @sl z x c v b k m , . / @sr lctl @num lalt spc ralt rmet @sym @tst )

(defalias lol #(: - D))

;; Contrived example (deflayer asking-for-trouble @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol @lol )

;; One way to safely use layer-add and layer-rem: the button bound to layer-add ;; is the same button bound to layer-rem in the layer that add adds to the ;; stack. I.e., it becomes impossible to add or remove multiple copies of a ;; layer. (defalias add (layer-add multi-overlay) ;; multi-overlay is defined in the next rem (layer-rem multi-overlay) ;; section below this )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: Multi-use buttons

Perhaps one of the most useful features of KMonad, where a lot of work has gone into, but also an area with many buttons that are ever so slightly different. The naming and structuring of these buttons might change sometime soon, but for now, this is what there is.

For the next section being able to talk about examples is going to be handy, so consider the following scenario and mini-language that will be the same between scenarios. - We have some button foo that will be different between scenarios - foo is bound to ‘Esc’ on the input keyboard - the letters a s d f are bound to themselves - Px signifies the press of button x on the keyboard - Rx signifies the release of said button - Tx signifies the sequential and near instantaneous press and release of x - 100 signifies 100ms pass

So for example: Tesc Ta: tap of ‘Esc’ (triggering foo), tap of ‘a’ triggering a Pesc 100 Ta Tb Resc: press of ‘Esc’, 100ms pause, tap of ‘a’, tap of ‘b’, release of ‘Esc’

The tap-next button takes 2 buttons, one for tapping, one for holding, and combines them into a single button. When pressed, if the next event is its own release, we tap the ‘tapping’ button. In all other cases we first press the ‘holding’ button then we handle the event. Then when the tap-next gets released, we release the ‘holding’ button.

So, using our mini-language, we set foo to: (tap-next x lsft) Then: Tesc -> x Tesc Ta -> xa Pesc Ta Resc -> A Pesc Ta Tr Resc -> AR

The tap-hold button is very similar to tap-next (a theme, trust me). The difference lies in how the decision is made whether to tap or hold. A tap-hold waits for a particular timeout, if the tap-hold is released anywhere before that moment we execute a tap immediately. If the timeout occurs and the tap-hold is still held, we switch to holding mode.

The additional feature of a tap-hold is that it pauses event-processing until it makes its decision and then rolls back processing when the decision has been made.

So, again with the mini-language, we set foo to: (tap-hold 200 x lsft) ;; Like tap-next, but with a 200ms timeout Then: Tesc -> x Tesc Ta -> xa Pesc 300 a -> A (the moment you press a) Pesc a 300 -> A (after 200 ms) Pesc a 100 Resc -> xa (both happening immediately on Resc)

The tap-hold-next button is a combination of the previous 2. Essentially, think of it as a tap-next button, but it also switches to held after a period of time. This is useful, because if you have a (tap-next ret ctl) for example, and you press it thinking you want to press C-v, but then you change your mind, you now cannot release the button without triggering a ‘ret’, that you then have to backspace. With the tap-hold-next button, you simply outwait the delay, and you’re good. I see no benefit of tap-next over tap-hold-next with a decent timeout value.

You can use the :timeout-button keyword to specify a button other than the hold button which should be held when the timeout expires. For example, we can construct a button which types one x when tapped, multiple x’s when held, and yet still acts as shift when another button is pressed before the timeout expires. So, using the minilanguage and foo as: (tap-hold-next 200 x lsft :timeout-button x) Then: Tesc -> Tx Pesc 100 a -> A (the moment you press a) Pesc 5000 Resc -> xxxxxxx (some number of auto-repeated x’s)

Note that KMonad does not itself auto-repeat the key. In this last example, KMonad emits 200 Px 4800 Rx, and the operating system’s auto-repeat feature, if any, emits multiple x’s because it sees that the x key is held for 4800 ms.

The tap-next-release is like tap-next, except it decides whether to tap or hold based on the next release of a key that was not pressed before us. This also performs rollback like tap-hold. So, using the minilanguage and foo as: (tap-next-release x lsft) Then: Tesc Ta -> xa Pa Pesc Ra Resc -> ax (because ‘a’ was already pressed when we started, so foo decides it is tapping) Pesc Ta Resc -> A (because a was pressed and released after we started, so foo decides it is holding)

These increasingly stranger buttons are, I think, coming from the stubborn drive of some of my more eccentric (and I mean that in the most positive way) users to make typing with modifiers on the home-row more comfortable. Especially layouts that encourage a lot of rolling motions are nicer to use with the release style buttons.

The tap-hold-next-release (notice a trend?) is just like tap-next-release, but it comes with an additional timeout that, just like tap-hold-next will jump into holding-mode after a timeout.

I honestly think that tap-hold-next-release, although it seems the most complicated, probably is the most comfortable to use. But I’ve put all of them in a testing layer down below, so give them a go and see what is nice.

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias xtn (tap-next x lsft) ;; Shift that does ‘x’ on tap xth (tap-hold 400 x lsft) ;; Long delay for easier testing thn (tap-hold-next 400 x lsft) tnr (tap-next-release x lsft) tnh (tap-hold-next-release 2000 x lsft)

;; Used it the colemak layer xcp (tap-hold-next 400 esc ctl) )

;; Some of the buttons used here are defined in the next section (deflayer multi-overlay @mt _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @rem _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @thn _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @xtn _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @xth @tnr _ _ _ _ _ _ @tnh )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: Multi-tap

Besides the tap-hold style buttons there is another multi-use button (with. only 1 variant, at the moment). The multi-tap.

A multi-tap codes for different buttons depending on how often it is tapped. It is defined by a series of delays and buttons, followed by a last button without delay. As long as you tap the multi-tap within the delay specified, it will jump to the next button. Once the delay is exceeded the selected button is pressed. If the last button in the list is reached, it is immediately pressed. When another key is pressed down while we’re tapping, `multi-tap’ also immediately exits and taps the current button.

Note that you can actually hold the button, so in the below example, going: tap-tap-hold (wait 300ms) will get you a pressed c, until you release again.

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias mt (multi-tap 300 a 300 b 300 c 300 d e))

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: Around-next

The around-next function creates a button that primes KMonad to perform the next button-press inside some context. This could be the context of ‘having Shift pressed’ or ‘being inside some layer’ or, less usefully, ‘having d pressed’. It is a more general and powerful version of layer-next.

There is also an around-next-timeout button that does the same thing as around-next, except that if some other button press is not detected within some timeout, some other button is tapped. This can be used to create a leader-key that simply times out (by passing a non-button), or a key that can still function as a normal key, but also as a leader key when used slowly.

I think expansion of this button-style is probably the future of leader-key, hydra-style functionality support in KMonad.

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias ns (around-next sft) ;; Shift the next press nnm (around-next @num) ;; Perform next press in numbers layer ntm (around-next-timeout 500 sft XX)


(deflayer around-next-test _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @ns _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @nnm _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @ntm _ _ _ _ _ _ )

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: Compose-key sequences

Compose-key sequences are series of button-presses that your operating system will interpret as the insertion of a special character, like accented characters, or various special-languages. In that sense, they are just syntactic sugar for keyboard macros.

To get this to work on Linux you will need to set your compose-key with a tool like setxkbmap', as well as tell kmonad that information. See thedefcfg’ block at the top of this file for a working example. Note that you need to wait ever so slightly for the keyboard to register with linux before the command gets executed, that’s why the sleep 1. Also, note that all the `/run/current-system’ stuff is because the author uses NixOS. Just find a shell-command that will:

1. Sleep a moment
2. Set the compose-key to your desired key

Please be aware that what setxkbmap' calls themenu’ key is not actually the `menu’ key! If you want to use the often suggested

  setxkbmap -option compose:menu

you will have to set your compose key within kmonad to compose' and notmenu’.

After this, this should work out of the box under Linux. Windows does not recognize the same compose-key sequences, but WinCompose will make most of the sequences line up with KMonad: This has not in any way been tested on Mac.

In addition to hard-coded symbols, we also provide ‘uncompleted’ macros. Since a compose-key sequence is literally just a series of keystrokes, we can omit the last one, and enter the sequence for ‘add an umlaut’ and let the user then press some letter to add this umlaut to. These are created using the +" syntax.

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias sym (layer-toggle symbols)


(deflayer symbols _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ä é © _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ +’ +~ +` +^ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ +” +, _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _)

#| ————————————————————————– Optional: Command buttons

Currently we also provide the ability to launch arbitrary shell-commands from inside kmonad. These commands are simply handed off to the command-shell without any further checking or waiting.

NOTE: currently only tested on Linux, but should work on any platform, as long as the command is valid for that platform.

The `cmd-button’ function takes two arguments, the second one of which is optional. These represent the commands to be executed on pressing and releasing the button respectively.

BEWARE: never run anyone’s configuration without looking at it. You wouldn’t want to push:

(cmd-button "rm -rf ~/*") ;; Delete all this user's data

————————————————————————– |#

(defalias dat (cmd-button “date >> /tmp/kmonad_example.txt”) ;; Append date to tmpfile pth (cmd-button “echo $PATH > /tmp/kmonad_path.txt”) ;; Write out PATH ;; dat' on press andpth’ on release bth (cmd-button “date >> /tmp/kmonad_example.txt” “echo $PATH > /tmp/kmonad_path.txt”) )

(deflayer command-test _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ @dat @pth _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ) `