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The other day I noticed that the letter markings on some of my keys on my keyboard were wearing off. I thought it was pretty neat. It’s nature’s heatmap of sorts. The keys I used the most wore off the fastest.
So then I got to thinking, wouldn’t it be neat to see keyboard heatmaps for different programming languages?
I assume LISP programmers would get their parenthesis keys worn down quickly, Python programmers would show elegant wear on their tab key, Perl users would get their “#$%^&*” keys worn down and Java programmers would simply burn out their keyboards with all that verbosity
Thus the keyboard heatmap generator was born:
Here are some results for generating keyboard heatmaps from samples of some programming languages.
For each language there is a standard heatmap which gives each key a color from dark blue to red depending on its percent of use, and there’s a density plot which randomly places a dot on the key for each time it was hit, thus keys hit frequently have more dots.
Keep in mind these are from arbitrary code samples I found on Google code search. This certainly isn’t scientific. But you do see some of the patterns I was imagining. Look at that elegant tab use in Python! Perl is a little heavy on the dollar sign. Notice the space bar usage in Java (perhaps that implies a whole lotta typing!)
Can you come up with some other interesting heatmaps? Does your code make different heatmaps than the rest of your team? What does it look like when your cat walks on the keypad? How about a baby hitting keys?