Types Of Keystrokes on a CharaChorder One

Learn the various ways you can type using CharaChorder.


Character Entry

Character Entry means “one character at a time.” This is how most people are used to typing.

Most of the switches on your CharaChorder, when moved by themselves in any direction (north, south, east, west), will produce a single character, such as a letter or punctuation mark. Others perform other actions such as Space, Backspace, Delete, Tab, Control, Alt, and Shift. When your CharaChorder switches are used in this manner, we call it Character Entry.


A chord is a multi-finger key press where switches are pressed and released at the same time (or about the same time).

For example, the chord for “the” is t+e. When you trigger these switches simultaneously, the CharaChorder will automatically process your text and replace the t and e with the word the.

CharaChorder comes with a pre-set library of chords which you can manage and update as you like, choosing what switch combinations result in what words. For example, “night” and “thing” both use the same letters (N, I, G, H, T), but the corresponding chords are n+i+g+h for “night” and n+i+g+h+t for “thing.”

The timing of how closely you need to press and release switches for a chord is based on your CharaChorder Press Tolerance and Release Tolerance settings.

One unique feature of chording is that if you do not trigger a chord on your first try you can just continue to try to chord and CharaChorder will clean up the jumbled text once you are successful. Note that there are some characters, such as punctuation, which do interrupt this feature.

See this in action below where the chord “the” which is t+e is missed a few times but then finally successful.

Arpeggiate modifiers

Arpeggiate modifiers allow some of the modifier keys to be pressed after and independently of a chord. They will then replace the word with a new word as if both were chorded together. Note that no other key can be pressed between the chord and modifier key, nor does it with work with character entry.

For example, if you chord “take” and then press a switch corresponding to the Shift modifier, you will get “Take”. Do this again except press the Plural modifier and you will get “Takes”.

3D Press

Just as your CharaChorder switches can be moved in four lateral directions (north, south, east, west), they can also be pressed in, or you might say down toward the floor (as opposed to south).

When a switch is activated by pushing it into the surface of the device (similarly to an ordinary keyboard key), it is called a 3D press. Characters aren’t usually mapped to 3D presses, but you will find them in some keyboard shortcuts and you can use them in chords as well.

3D presses can slow you down if over-used, but can be helpful in a variety of ways.

If you’re having trouble performing or understanding the 3D press, here is a quick video from user Lamb that may help you:


Diagonal Press

A type of 3D press is the diagonal press, which is performed by 3D pressing in at an angle such as south-west.

This can be used for chords that share letters on a single switch (I.E. a+t). Some users (especially new users) find these difficult to perform, but every chord that has a diagonal press also has a variation that doesn’t require it. The press should be performed not too far from the center of the switch.

Holding Down Switches

As with a QWERTY keyboard, you can hold down CharaChorder switches for various effects.

Hold down the backspace key to delete multiple characters

Hold down Shift while doing character entry to capitalize each character.

Hold NumShift and arrow up or down to scroll a page.

Just know that holding down a switch may interrupt any chord you attempt, as you will not have pressed all of the chord keys at the same time if you are already holding down a key.