Author Topic: Novel Features?  (Read 565 times)

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Offline Snipeye

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Novel Features?
« on: Wed, 15 May 2024, 09:56:53 »
One of my favorite things about building keyboards is doing weird and novel stuff.

For example, in a recent keyboard I managed to shove 30 encoders onto the PCB.  Its not useful, but its a bit interesting. Other examples: infrared decoding so you can use a remote control, combining a mouse and keyboard into a single device, Hall effect switches for analog inputs, motorized linear potentiometers, solenoids, etc.

Im looking for more stupid things to shove into a keyboard. Any ideas?

Offline Rhienfo

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Re: Novel Features?
« Reply #1 on: Wed, 15 May 2024, 19:37:51 »
It was actually hard to think of stuff like this because I'm pretty plain when it comes to my keyboards. Retractable feet on a keyboard you build could be novel, don't really see a point but like you might. And side buttons on the keyboard could be novel (and actually serve a purpose lol)

Hope this gives you some ideas.
 

Offline Snipeye

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Re: Novel Features?
« Reply #2 on: Wed, 15 May 2024, 22:34:38 »
I actually really like idea of side buttons. I see a lot of keyboards with macro/reprogrammable columns k. The outside, but moving them to the actual side of the case would be a very neat aesthetic IMO. Mind if I steal this?

Offline Rhienfo

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Re: Novel Features?
« Reply #3 on: Thu, 16 May 2024, 02:26:53 »
I actually really like idea of side buttons. I see a lot of keyboards with macro/reprogrammable columns k. The outside, but moving them to the actual side of the case would be a very neat aesthetic IMO. Mind if I steal this?

I don't think I could ever do it myself lol so it's fine.

Besides, when it comes to personal projects (or for me any project) It shouldn't matter if you take ideas, it's a communal hobby. It's also not stealing them too.
 

Offline Mandan

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Re: Novel Features?
« Reply #4 on: Fri, 17 May 2024, 17:45:16 »
Some early workstations had a "fast" or "repeat" key that told the OS to increase the repeat rate.  Such a thing would be handy in console windows when you want to move the cursor rapidly.

> side buttons

Excellent idea! 

Offline Findecanor

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Re: Novel Features?
« Reply #5 on: Sat, 18 May 2024, 04:27:52 »
A couple of ideas I've had of but not developed:

Analogue joystick for scrolling, similar to a IBM Scrollpoint. Emulate a high-resolution scrollwheel (Microsoft's convention of "resolution magnifier" in the HID protocol), but look also at tweaking the input incorporating "negative inertia" like IBM Trackpoint.
I've seen keyboards with multiple joysticks but I dunno if one was used for scrolling.

"Natural Keyboard"-style ergonomic keyboard, but split and with with adjustable tenting, mating with flat parts of the keyboard without gaps. Don't just use adjustable feet but actual hinges. A keyboard frame made of sheet metal could incorporate "invisible hinges" in the frame: a pantograph mechanism hidden below the top surface so you don't see it. Alternatively, curved sliding surfaces (sectors of a circle with origo at the gap in the surface) and a pin and/or spring could be used.

Integrated trackpad in the top surface. Not just a separate component but integrated into the top case utilising all the available area.

I've seen buttons on the left side of some recent Bluetooth keyboards: for on/off and pairing (Bluetooth), and I think one also had some media buttons.
The HHKB Studio has touch-sensitive sliders on a couple of its side edges.
I remember from the forums long ago that someone was working on a 60% with Trackpoint that had the mouse buttons on the front, but apparently it never reached mass production.

Unfortunately, the USB HID protocol does not support adjustable repeat rate or motorised sliders itself. You'd have to develop a custom driver or something.
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