Mac tech notes (phantom NumLock stuck, KeyNote)
Posted by David Chandler on August 19, 2010
The latest episode in my adjustment to the Mac involved the nonexistent NumLock key on the MacBook Pro. Twice during presentations, the keyboard has gotten stuck in NumLock mode in which the j,k,l and surrounding keys function as the numeric keypad and no other keys work. Thankfully, my password has a letter in the phantom numeric keypad area so I could diagnose this situation when typing in the login box. The trouble is, the MacBook Pro has no NumLock key (older Macs used Fn + F6), so it is a mystery how I got into this mode. It appears to be a bug in Mouse Keys. The solution is to tap the Option key 5x to turn off Mouse Keys or go into System Preferences | Universal Access and disable Mouse Keys.
On the bright side, KeyNote rocks. I kept noticing that the most polished presenters were using KeyNote, and now I see what they’re seeing: a presentation console on the notebook LCD that shows the current AND next slides (which makes smooth transitions much easier), speaker notes, and a giant digital clock. It uses extended desktop mode beautifully: console on the notebook display, and audience slides on the secondary display, to which you can also drag over all demos, editors, etc. KeyNote alone has finally sold me on the Mac.