I use PageUp/PageDown and Home/End keys constantly, to scroll through documents, to go to the beginning/end of each line or text entry field or document, etc. But I’ve noticed that many new notebook computers don’t have these as separate keys, and many desktops have these in non-standard arrangements (i.e. not in a 3x2 arrangement along with Ins/Del).
So I’m wondering, do most people rarely use these keys? If you don’t use them, how do you navigate through documents and web pages?
Also, did any of you used to use these keys constantly, but successfully switched to a keyboard without these keys? What alternatives do you use?
I use control+arrow keys to jump through lines and paragraphs, I use the space bar to read docs online, tab to get to the next text entry field, and I use zoom (and the Table of Contents) to traverse larger distances through Word documents (i.e. zoom to very small, and then you can pick the place you want to be).
I use them a lot in Excel worksheets, the only other way I know of to navigate is scrolling. I wonder if anyone will invent a “Turboscroll” that’s connected to the scroll wheel in the middle of the mouse?
OK, the space bar works the same as PageDown on browsers, but do you just use the arrow keys if you want to go back up? What about navigating within a long text entry field, would you just use the mouse to go to the beginning or the end? I guess for zoom, you’d use the mouse to “pick the place you want to be”?
(I hope you don’t think I’m trying to be a snob here. I’m really concerned because I’m considering purchase of a tablet PC and the models I’m interested in don’t have these keys.)
I use them a lot, and I was a little discombobulated with my new MacBook until I figured out that the “fn” key plus arrows gave me page up and down. (Also, fn+backspace serves for delete, was glad to discover that too.)
I just wish there was a fn key on the right side of the keyboard too, for one-handed paging through websites. No, not for that reason!
ETA: More general advice: there might be a keyboard combo that will give you the functions you’re looking for, if a specific key is lacking.
I next-to-never use them on a desktop, but I next-to-always use them on a laptop. When looking at different laptops, I’ll actually dismiss some based on their crappy (to me) placement up page up/down relative to arrow keys*.
My Systemax laptop was the best. The page up and down were on either side of the up arrow (and right above the left/right arrows). You could easily scroll your way through a page without having to move even your fingers hardly at all. It rocked! My new Macbook’s fine, since if you press fn/command (can’t recall offhand), you change the up and down to page up/down. Works for me.
I used to use them all of the time and was a little worried about not having them when I made the switch from PC to Mac (I didn’t know about the function/arrow key combo until around thirty seconds ago). My Macbook has two-finger scrolling though and I’ve gone from someone who uses my keyboard far more than the average laptop user to a touchpad junkie.