MIDI messages to alphanumeric keyboard bindings in linux?
July 23, 2014 1:57 AM   Subscribe

I'd like to use a 12 key MIDI footpedal to type in various (arbitrary) keystrokes under linux (debian.) Is this doable, easy, hard? (I can put in time & effort to write config files and mapping files. Would rather not do any real coding for this, if possible. I'd like to have an idea of do-ability before investing in the gear. Am posting here because quality response and unsure where else to.)
posted by bertran to Technology (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Haven't tried it, but this bit of code claims to do exactly that.
posted by uncleozzy at 5:42 AM on July 23, 2014

There are texts out there that deal with this but mainly on Windows, but they could be a good starting point for further investigating:


A good forum to ask the question would be: http://unix.stackexchange.com/
posted by KMB at 5:50 AM on July 23, 2014

I wrote a program to do this back in like 2003. It probably doesn't completely work anymore, but memail me if uncleozzy's link doesn't pan out and I'll dust it off.

There are on-screen virtual midi keyboards you can use for testing without buying any real hardware.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 8:39 AM on July 23, 2014

Response by poster: Thank you!

I'll try mid2key first, yup looks to be exactly the functionality sought; @qxntpqbbbqxl, thanks for the reminder about virtual keyboards. @KMB, thanks for the forum referral.
posted by bertran at 10:20 AM on July 23, 2014

I did exactly that for my USB foot pedals -- it uses a Teensy to talk MIDI to the pedals and on the USB side it emulates both a keyboard and a mouse to allow keystrokes as well as mouse movement, scrolling and clicks. By pretending to be a USB HID device it doesn't require any MIDI hardware/software on the computer and "just works" with anything you plug it into.
posted by autopilot at 6:44 PM on July 23, 2014

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