Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain, Apple says. There’s no magic in a keyboard. The present is the touchpad. The future is voice. However, if you’re curious about improving your Mac experience, you’ll enjoy playing with the strangest looking, but most cleverly implemented Mac tool to customize and use a virtual keyboard.
Hot Mouse Flower Drum Song
Customizing the Mac’s keyboard isn’t difficult. Even Apple gives us a few options to assign this or that to the Function keys. The Mac’s onscreen virtual keyboard is decidedly ho hum boring.
Enter Hot Mouse Flower. Yes, that’s the name of this clever customizable virtual keyboard tool for Mac users who still dare to Think Different™.
By hitting a custom shortcut key or clicking on the Menubar icon, Hot Mouse Flower pops up on screen in a kind of odd looking, flower-like pseudo keyboard arrangement with the screen pointer in the middle.
What does Hot Mouse Flower do? Click on a key in the Flower and that key is sent to the front application on your Mac.
Hold down one or more of the modifier keys, and they’re combined with the clicked Flower key. Presto change-Oh. Multiple hot key combinations from a single Hot Mouse Flower key.
See? That’s Hot Mouse Flower.
Preferences are straightforward and easily modified. Select each key in the Flower and adjust the settings. Move keys by grabbing and moving up or down in the stack.
Hot Mouse Flower will stay open on your Mac’s screen until dismissed by hitting the Escape key. Or, simply move the screen pointer over the Exit zone.
Why do you need Hot Mouse Flower (regardless of how clever the interface, or useful virtual keyboards can be)?
Most Mac users won’t have a need for an app that modifies the keyboard.
However, if you exercise a little curiosity, you’ll find that Apple’s default keyboard could be improved by simply assigning different functions to select keys.
For example, I never use the Media keys on my Mac’s keyboard. By assigning them to a different function, I gain a little productivity with nominal effort. Repeat as needed.