I don't believe you will get a fast reponse, if any from VF on here, so, here is what we understand to be the answer to some of your questions:
You can't, that we can figure, modify your layout at all.
You also cannot view your recorded content in any order like A-Z, or Z-A, etc, like the old T-Box.
You can use the "fast forward" arrows left and right in the TV guide area, but not the recorded content area and in the TV guide area that will allow you to go forward a day at a time or back a day at a time.
Not sure re: keyboard.
Visual Fast Forward - they tried to give that option in the past, about eight months ago and it broke a few things. They advised me: Our current plan is for a new visual fastforward feature to be delivered in June. This remains our highest priority new feature.
We are nearly at the end of June, so I guess that is not going to be true.
Recording shows - You can't record whole channels and many many shows and that will not likely change much in the near future. Those shows you cannot record are ones you also will not be able to view "back in time", so must watch them live, or not at all. One thing - some shows you can record on some channels, if they show on other channels you cannot. For example, NCIS LA is on Three and Five at the moment, and both channels were playing series one recently. You can record it on 5 not Three.....it is terribly frustrating to say the least!