Author Topic: Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint  (Read 282546 times)

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #150 on: Sun, 14 December 2008, 20:48:41 »
Well, also, note that his board has literally NO space on the sides. There would have to be some form of unsightly spacer at the very least.

Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #151 on: Sun, 14 December 2008, 20:59:46 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;14804
Well, also, note that his board has literally NO space on the sides. There would have to be some form of unsightly spacer at the very least.


it does have space on the sides, below the keys level, doesnt it?
and a clip from underneath could work too, which wouldnt show up on the sides at all.

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #152 on: Sun, 14 December 2008, 21:19:48 »
Below the key level it does, but then you'll have keycaps touching, which doesn't work. ;)

Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #153 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 00:12:38 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;14809
Below the key level it does, but then you'll have keycaps touching, which doesn't work. ;)


well then a connector underneath which spaces them slightly ;)
You have to look at "how can it work" rather than "how can it not" ;)

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Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #154 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 04:59:12 »
I already thought about magnets clipping the modules together, however, it might not hold up when you pick the whole assembly up. Like when you have guests and somebody decides to move your 'board around resulting in a part falling to the floor. So, something like a docking station (with F1-F12 and cursor block) might provide more stability.

Wellington, do you think about F-keys as a module and cursor as another? That would leave a hole where F-keys and cursor block meet.

There are a few millimeters space left and right. Should be enough for magnets, maybe even clips.

Spacers could come with the add-on modules. Could get flimsy though.

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #155 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 10:44:18 »
I just had a new idea, that would require that the case be widened to accomodate it, but I think it'd work OK, as long as you used the right connectors.

(And, the devices on the sides would end up having bezels.)



Sorry about the poor quality, but the bottom part shows the interface. In that, I'm using an edge connector, but it doesn't have to be that. Keyboard is in black, numpad (or whatever you're docking) is in red.

Note that the other device uses its own case to cover the interface.

You may want to do things upside down of how I did that, that way the slot doesn't get filled with dust, though. (That is, mount the slot on the peripheral, not on the keyboard.)

Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #156 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 10:49:07 »
Quote from: lowpoly;14856
I already thought about magnets clipping the modules together, however, it might not hold up when you pick the whole assembly up. Like when you have guests and somebody decides to move your 'board around resulting in a part falling to the floor. So, something like a docking station (with F1-F12 and cursor block) might provide more stability.


falling apart when moved may actually be okay -- the logitech dinovo was exactly like that and it sold like a blockbuster. I owned one of those and I didnt really find it inconvenient since 99 percent of the time it just sat on the desktop. The spacesaver keyboard part of the dinovo wasnt physically attached to the numpad/calculator that it came with, they just sat side by side on the desktop (and *looked* as if they were connected), but you could move each one separately. It might be something to consider at least for v1. They were each connected wirelessly (and independently) to the usb wireless receiver. That would be one way to solve the problem of "joining" them I guess. Even if the board/modules were wired instead of wireless, you could still do the same thing. True that that wouldnt be the same as a rigid board, but people would know that up front.  

Also true that some kind of docking station may work, but what are you envisioning for that? Wouldnt that add height to the board?

Quote

Wellington, do you think about F-keys as a module and cursor as another? That would leave a hole where F-keys and cursor block meet.

if you have connectors for the modules (instead of independent wired or wireless connections) then yes there will have to be some kind of hole for the connector -- But even here I think there may be ways to minimize the aesthetics of it so it remains sleek. For instance: a ribbon connector could connect from underneath and minimize the need to put a hole on the side of the modules and board. If you wanted more rigidity it would be threaded thru a spacer that clips to the underside of board/module.

This could work for F keys too (tho for F keys I still think that 2 versions of the board would be best, one hhkb version that uses Fn key, and a normal version that just has them built in normally). So the modules would really be more of a left-side and right-side issue.

Quote

There are a few millimeters space left and right. Should be enough for magnets, maybe even clips.


what do you think of ribbon cables from underneath, connecting left/right modules to the board? Is that a possible connector that could be used here? If I remember from pics of the g80 3000 (or one of those cherry boards that someone on geekhack took apart), the numpad was connected just by a ribbon cable. The clip that its threaded thru could posible hold the module/board together relatively rigidly - or just leave them magnetic and take-apart able (you could even dispense with the magnets like the dinovo and have them put-next-to-each-other-able.)

Lots of possibilities; I think whatever you do for the prototype though, the OEM manufacturer will likely have other ideas too.

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Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #157 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 14:53:18 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;14877
Note that the other device uses its own case to cover the interface.

This would probably be the most cost effective solution. You'd still need to add wiring. Or use a usb port. I'd like to keep the small footprint though. At least as long as possible. :)

Quote from: wellington1869;14878
falling apart when moved may actually be okay -- the logitech dinovo was exactly like that and it sold like a blockbuster.

Then separate cursor, numpad and fkey blocks might be fine, at least for a start.

Quote from: wellington1869;14878
Also true that some kind of docking station may work, but what are you envisioning for that? Wouldnt that add height to the board?

It would clip to two sides instead of one.

Quote from: wellington1869;14878
if you have connectors for the modules (instead of independent wired or wireless connections) then yes there will have to be some kind of hole for the connector -- But even here I think there may be ways to minimize the aesthetics of it so it remains sleek. For instance: a ribbon connector could connect from underneath and minimize the need to put a hole on the side of the modules and board. If you wanted more rigidity it would be threaded thru a spacer that clips to the underside of board/module.  

The connection will be difficult. Let's try without wireless. Spring contacts (?) might work. Or small connectors (probably the best).

But there was a misunderstanding regarding the 'hole'. I was thinking of this (the red rectangle is the hole):



Should there be a ScrollLock module that should fit in there? It would be too expensive and nobody would buy it.

Quote from: wellington1869;14878
This could work for F keys too (tho for F keys I still think that 2 versions of the board would be best, one hhkb version that uses Fn key, and a normal version that just has them built in normally). So the modules would really be more of a left-side and right-side issue.

That would add another pcb. In that case I'd prefer just a second version without numpad. Which might be the cheapest solution too.

Quote from: wellington1869;14878
what do you think of ribbon cables from underneath, connecting left/right modules to the board? Is that a possible connector that could be used here? If I remember from pics of the g80 3000 (or one of those cherry boards that someone on geekhack took apart), the numpad was connected just by a ribbon cable. The clip that its threaded thru could posible hold the module/board together relatively rigidly - or just leave them magnetic and take-apart able (you could even dispense with the magnets like the dinovo and have them put-next-to-each-other-able.)

A connector with the ribbon cable inside the 'board would be the way to go I think.

Here's a sketch for what I'd consider a good solution from a design POV:



It adds an adapter to connect the module to the keyboard. Would work on either side and supply the necessary distance between 'board and module. The wide bottom of the adapter could even contain some locking mechanism. And the connectors. This wouldn't work if the bottom of the keyboard weren't as slanted as it is.

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Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #158 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 15:07:06 »
you are a master of design.  there is no way a bank wont fund this if you stick these pics on a powerpoint presentation. I'm not even kidding :)

"Blah blah blah grade school blah blah blah IBM PS/2s blah blah blah I like Model Ms." -- Kishy

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Offline itlnstln

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« Reply #159 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 15:10:52 »
Damn, too bad you live in Germany.  I would love to work with you on a design for a split-ergo 'board.


Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #160 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 15:41:52 »
Quote from: wellington1869;14926
you are a master of design.  there is no way a bank wont fund this if you stick these pics on a powerpoint presentation. I'm not even kidding :)

Thanks :). However, thinking about it, it will get way too expensive this way.  If you want a keyboard without numpad you'd need the alpha part, the adapter, the cursor block and the F-key block. Four relatively complex parts.

It might cost at least twice as much as a single board combining all this.

Quote from: itlnstln;14929
Damn, too bad you live in Germany.  I would love to work with you on a design for a split-ergo 'board.

:)

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Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #161 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 16:51:26 »
Keep in mind you dont need to produce this final final result in your basement! All you need is to whet the funders (and OEM's) appetite. What you have right now will do that. The rest is what you present as your "vision" for the rest of the line and the marketing strategy and plan.  (after all they're going to ask you, "how will you be different from the rest?". And thats when you tell them what the market right now is missing, and how you're going to fill those needs with this whole line of boards).

Quote

Should there be a ScrollLock module that should fit in there? It would be too expensive and nobody would buy it.


I think you should handle scroll lock etc exactly the same way that a half dozen of boards out there in production right now that have separate numpads handle it. If you look at dinovo for example, numpad doesnt have scroll lock etc. The functions keys are all just made to fit onto the spacesaver board. Same with smk, by the way.
Again, you dont need to build that out right now. The OEM will design that when they transfer your design onto their own software and manufacturing equipment.  You should just go with exactly what you have right now, I think. The rest is the "vision" for the line.

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Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #162 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 17:11:49 »
I think you should see if costar is interested - they already have experience with the multiple pcb's (and multiple types of switches) on the Filco line.  
(and if they're also producing the das, then they also have experience with a random keyboard geek deciding to market his keyboard design and having a successful product as a result :)

"Blah blah blah grade school blah blah blah IBM PS/2s blah blah blah I like Model Ms." -- Kishy

using: ms 7000/Das 3

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #163 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 18:40:58 »
whoa, I can't believe I didn't notice this thread till just now. I bow down in awe of what you've achieved.

All this needs is to be ergo split and you have a perfect keyboard. Oh, and move the trackpoint over to HJN - am I alone in that desire? It's always seemed to me like it would work better there.

Some questions lowpoly :

-Where did the mouse buttons come from? Are they original from the donor board (they don't look familiar), or did you custom fab them? If so, how?

-How did you make the aluminum enclosure? Do you have access to a machine shop, or did you manage it with home tools?

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #164 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 18:44:51 »
Well, on a non-ergo board, GHB works perfectly. (No jokes about date rape. :p)

I'm right-handed, so HJN would work for me, but for a lefty, FGV would be optimal.

(Although, I occasionally use the TrackPoint with my left hand, so GHB is perfect on a non-ergo board, which I prefer.)

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #165 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 18:50:54 »
Oh, and on the issue of sourcing trackpoint hardware for if it ever goes into production.... I may be wrong, but my impression is that the main thing that separates genuine IBM trackpoints from the clones is negative inertia, which IBM has a patent on. Personally, I find non-IBM trackpoints completely useless... so to actually manufacture the thing, you'd need to either get IBM to sell you trackpoint modules, or build it in a country that doesn't honor software patents ;)

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #166 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 18:54:24 »
I can use non-IBM pointing sticks, it just takes some getting used to. But, yes, it would be a good idea to contact IBM to license the technology. Other companies have done it before - see the Toshiba AccuPoint, a licensed TrackPoint.

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #167 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 19:06:37 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;14962
Well, on a non-ergo board, GHB works perfectly. (No jokes about date rape. :p)

I'm right-handed, so HJN would work for me, but for a lefty, FGV would be optimal.

(Although, I occasionally use the TrackPoint with my left hand, so GHB is perfect on a non-ergo board, which I prefer.)


GHB *works*, it just seems like it would work *better* at HJN, with just slightly less finger reach. Being able to reach with the left finger would be nice though... so maybe TWO trackpoints, one at HJN, one at FGV (if I recall, there was actually a document from the designers of the trackpoint at an IBM lab somewhere talking about a prototype they did with multiple trackpoints)..

The more I think about it, the more convinced I am that when it comes to hardcore geekhack type people, there's never going to be a keyboard manufactured that makes us all happy, no matter how niche, because we all have our own little quirky preferences like this... what we really need is a 'keyboard construction kit' - a kit of modular, lego-like pieces that you can plug into each other and build your own custom keyboard... or a place like emachineshop.com where you can CAD out your own device and have it custom fabbed for you....

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #168 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 19:08:28 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;14966
I can use non-IBM pointing sticks, it just takes some getting used to. But, yes, it would be a good idea to contact IBM to license the technology. Other companies have done it before - see the Toshiba AccuPoint, a licensed TrackPoint.


I wasn't aware of them.... I'd seen them before, but just assumed they sucked as much as the alps ones they put in Dells.... does Toshiba still make laptops that include these?

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #169 on: Mon, 15 December 2008, 20:19:17 »
The Tecra M10 and A10 have it. (At least I'm pretty sure it's still an AccuPoint...)

For a while, my main computer was a Toshiba Satellite Pro 405CS - a Pentium 75 machine with an AccuPoint I - Toshiba's licensed clone of the TrackPoint III, IIRC. Yes, it had negative intertia. :)

Edit: Yes, it is an AccuPoint II, so... they've still got a license for it. :)

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #170 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 05:00:43 »
Quote from: wellington1869;14959
I think you should see if costar is interested - they already have experience with the multiple pcb's (and multiple types of switches) on the Filco line.  
(and if they're also producing the das, then they also have experience with a random keyboard geek deciding to market his keyboard design and having a successful product as a result :)

True. I'd like to know if anybody here could live with plastic cases?

Thanks for the comments on marketing/funding.

Quote from: kodos96;14961
-Where did the mouse buttons come from? Are they original from the donor board (they don't look familiar), or did you custom fab them? If so, how?

-How did you make the aluminum enclosure? Do you have access to a machine shop, or did you manage it with home tools?

The mouse buttons are custom made. It's just a small U-shaped piece of Aluminum. I added some Aluminum epoxy putty to add volume. Then "brushed" the surface and painted clear/black. They're attached to the pcb by a simple wire.

The case was done with hand tools, a Dremel and a power drill. I did the bends with an old toy vise I still had. Then used the same expoxy putty mentioned above to glue the corners. Tough stuff, it survived the 3 ft fall without cracking. Then polyester putty for the fine gaps, tool marks etc. Then grounding, filler, paint, clear coat. I fit in a small part of the usb hub case to have the holes for the connectors.

Quote
Trackpoint

Two Trackpoints may be easier for pointing. However you have to access keys across them, the H for example. Could interrupt the flow.

I know who the OEM manufacturer of the IBM Trackpoints is. They just don't answer my emails. :mad: I'm going to call their Switzerland office during the next days. In case everything works out.

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #171 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 10:42:06 »
I'll note that I'm fine with a plastic case.

Offline itlnstln

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« Reply #172 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 11:44:55 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;15003
I'll note that I'm fine with a plastic case.


Oh, c'mon!  Don't cheap out now!  J/K :)


But you better put a 10 lb. lead weight in the bottom of it.


Offline kodos96

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« Reply #173 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 12:14:05 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;14973
The Tecra M10 and A10 have it. (At least I'm pretty sure it's still an AccuPoint...)

For a while, my main computer was a Toshiba Satellite Pro 405CS - a Pentium 75 machine with an AccuPoint I - Toshiba's licensed clone of the TrackPoint III, IIRC. Yes, it had negative intertia. :)

Edit: Yes, it is an AccuPoint II, so... they've still got a license for it. :)


Oh cool... I hope to buy a laptop at some point in the future... its good to know I have an option other than a thinkpad to consider.

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #174 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 12:20:54 »
Quote from: lowpoly;14993
The case was done with hand tools, a Dremel and a power drill. I did the bends with an old toy vise I still had.


Sweet... my Dremel gave up the ghost long ago, but I have a new one on my christimas wish list (for hacking my Evolution)....

Out of curiosity, how many hours of labor would you estimate you put into this thing in total?

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #175 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 12:35:02 »
Quote from: lowpoly;14993
Two Trackpoints may be easier for pointing. However you have to access keys across them, the H for example. Could interrupt the flow.


A lot of people I've talked to cite this as the reason they don't like trackpoints... but personally I find that having it there helps my accuracy on the keys surrounding it, in the same way as the bumps on the F and J keys to help your fingers find home row without looking.

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #176 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 12:37:30 »
Quote from: lowpoly;14993
Two Trackpoints may be easier for pointing. However you have to access keys across them, the H for example. Could interrupt the flow.


Oh wait, I see what you're saying - that it would be worse with HJN/GFV cause you'd be required to reach OVER it to hit keys with correct touch-typing fingers.... that's an interesting point.

As a test, I just tried typing on a trackpoint board with my hands shifted over to emulate having the trackpoint at HJN - it didn't seem to be a problem for me.

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #177 on: Tue, 16 December 2008, 13:43:40 »
Quote from: kodos96;15010
Out of curiosity, how many hours of labor would you estimate you put into this thing in total?

I have no idea but that should be a three digit number. There was a lot of trial and error involved. Worst time killer was having to paint the case again.

Quote from: kodos96;15012
As a test, I just tried typing on a trackpoint board with my hands shifted over to emulate having the trackpoint at HJN - it didn't seem to be a problem for me.

But you have short travel keys like scissors?

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Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #178 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 03:29:42 »
lowpoly, you need one of these "rapid prototyping" machines ;)

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Offline kodos96

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« Reply #179 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 12:26:45 »
Quote from: lowpoly;15022
But you have short travel keys like scissors?


I have both, but I did the aforementioned test on a laptop board - just tried again on my spacesaver trackpoint, and you're right, it is a bit more of an issue on full size keys - hitting 'H' results in coming into contact with the trackpoint... It didn't actually bother me, or prevent me from hitting the key successfully, but if it had actually been plugged in it probably would have caused the pointer to wobble on every 'H'. Obviously I won't know until I actually try it on a live board, but I don't think it would be annoying enough to change my mind that it would be better off that way.

Interestingly, it actually seemed like less of an issue if it was positioned even one step further to the right, at JNM, and it would require ZERO reach to get to it from there, so maybe that's worth trying.

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #180 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 12:31:59 »
UIJ would actually be a better position than JNM - moving up is always easier than moving down.

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #181 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 12:52:26 »
Quote from: wellington1869;15109
lowpoly, you need one of these "rapid prototyping" machines ;)


You might have been kidding, but I actually think that this kind of thing might be the way to go for those of us with extreme keyboard/input device fetishes. Rapid prototypers/fab's with sufficient resolution for the kind of thing we'd need are way too expensive (things like fab@home are showing some promise, and getting better all the time, but currently not capable of fabbing anything that doesn't look like it was made by hand with a hot glue gun) But there are 'rent-a-fab' places online where you can upload a CAD of your design and they'll fab it for you on high-end hardware. Some of them will even print PCBs, source parts, and do assembly... basically act as an ultra-low-volume (down to a single unit) OEM.... for a price of course - nowhere near as low as the amortized cost of even a low-volume run on a real assembly line, but the sense I've gotten (they won't quote you a price without a specific design, but I've seen some prices people have been quoted on other things of similar complexity) is that the price is "reasonable", as in the same kind of price range you'd pay for "specialty" hardware (the kind designed to be paid for by your insurance company).

It seems like this might be an interesting thing to pursue as a path to getting a device manufactured and marketed (if you can't get an investor interested in your design otherwise)... you could manufacture in low volume (or even build-to-order), sell at "specialty" prices, and if enough people are willing to buy at those prices, it would demonstrate the existence of a market for your product, at which point you could send off your design to a normal OEM for a real production run.

Offline kodos96

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« Reply #182 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 12:53:59 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;15146
UIJ would actually be a better position than JNM - moving up is always easier than moving down.


Yeah, that'd work too.

Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #183 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 13:05:59 »
Quote from: kodos96;15147
You might have been kidding, but I actually think that this kind of thing might be the way to go for those of us with extreme keyboard/input device fetishes.


I  would love to have one of those in my basement :)

"Blah blah blah grade school blah blah blah IBM PS/2s blah blah blah I like Model Ms." -- Kishy

using: ms 7000/Das 3

Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #184 on: Wed, 17 December 2008, 23:59:49 »
lowpoly, I posted these links elsewhere (and you've probably seen these), but for a design guy I imagine you'd be interested in stuff like this:


Three kinds of moldable plastic if you want to mold your own parts:  

plastic pellets called "shapelock"

"metal clay" (looks like silver after its dried)

"magic-sculp"

"Blah blah blah grade school blah blah blah IBM PS/2s blah blah blah I like Model Ms." -- Kishy

using: ms 7000/Das 3

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #185 on: Sat, 20 December 2008, 16:28:13 »
Sorry for abandoning this thread, been down with the flu.

Quote from: wellington1869;15109
lowpoly, you need one of these "rapid prototyping" machines ;)

That would be great. :)

Actually, something like http://www.emachineshop.com/ (had been mentioned here before) might work really well for metal cases.

I have to start comparing prices. For pcbs as well.

Quote from: kodos96;15145
Interestingly, it actually seemed like less of an issue if it was positioned even one step further to the right, at JNM, and it would require ZERO reach to get to it from there, so maybe that's worth trying.

Quote from: bhtooefr;15146
UIJ would actually be a better position than JNM - moving up is always easier than moving down.

Or JKM and DFC. FCV and JNM could work as home row nipples.

Quote from: wellington1869;15197
lowpoly, I posted these links elsewhere (and you've probably seen these), but for a design guy I imagine you'd be interested in stuff like this:


Three kinds of moldable plastic if you want to mold your own parts:  

plastic pellets called "shapelock"

"metal clay" (looks like silver after its dried)

"magic-sculp"

I remember magic-sculp back from my sculpture days. Didn't use it myself though. Thanks for the links.

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Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #186 on: Sat, 20 December 2008, 17:25:06 »
Quote from: lowpoly;15578

Actually, something like http://www.emachineshop.com/ (had been mentioned here before) might work really well for metal cases.

I have to start comparing prices. For pcbs as well.
.


emachineshop looks fantastic. can you let us know what you find out in terms of pricing?  I've got a ton of old armchair-inventor ideas rattling around in my head, I'd love to do cheap prototypes (if they're affordable!) via online services like this.

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #187 on: Tue, 30 December 2008, 15:53:28 »
Any news?

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #188 on: Tue, 30 December 2008, 17:29:31 »
Not really, life is slow at the office ATM and when we're here we're moving stuff around. But it looks like I'll start price inquiries in January.

I also dug out my old Rhino3D version to build an accurate NURBS model but that version was just too old (1.0). Couldn't even do some simple fillets. IIRC I used the 1.2 upgrade before, which could be downloaded from the Rhino site but that download is gone since. Have to check other possibilites.

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Offline billm

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« Reply #189 on: Wed, 21 January 2009, 21:11:03 »
So you can just cut off the alpha part of the PCB and it still works?
If it's not ALPS it's crap!

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #190 on: Wed, 21 January 2009, 21:26:52 »
He did some wiring on this one, and wired it up to a custom controller, not the original controller.

So, no, that wouldn't just work.

I'm not sure if I want this keyboard any more, though. I do like the lightness of the Cherry blues, and I like this Scorpius M10... for the price of a Scorpius M10. Not sure about the price area of this keyboard.

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #191 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 05:40:55 »
billm, look at the pcb pic (bigger version) and you will see the extra cables. You also need a custom controller for the function layer if you want to go without autohotkey. If you use autohotkey the original controller will do.

To give just a small update, I found the service release for Rhino and can finally do fillets. Most of the keycaps are done. I'm currently working on the case and a low poly switch in Wings3D. Beside mockup pics this will also allow me to design the switch pcb support.

Costar doesn't answer my mails (two so far). I even sent them a link to the pics (not here). I'm not too worried about this as I'd rather have more control over the single parts to make variations more easy. For ex. keycap, switch pcb, case color, layout variations.

I finally have a sales contact for the pointing stick. No results yet.

Found info about the production process for the Macbook unibody. Definitely not an option for a low volume production.

As for pricing, it will be impossible to beat the price of the M10. Mine would have lower volumes, and pointing stick, USB hub and programmable controller add features that the M10 doesn't have so it's hard to compare anyway.

The programmable controller also requires me to develop user friendly programming software.

A lot more to do, pics will be next.

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #192 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 09:12:50 »
Quote from: lowpoly
As for pricing, it will be impossible to beat the price of the M10. Mine would have lower volumes, and pointing stick, USB hub and programmable controller add features that the M10 doesn't have so it's hard to compare anyway.


I wasn't saying it would compete with the M10, I was just saying that I was unsure that I would pay this sort of money for Cherry blues. My guestimates for price were in the $300 area. ;)

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #193 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 10:02:56 »
I have no idea what the final price would be, hopefully a lot less. It's a complex task.

Quote
I was just saying that I was unsure that I would pay this sort of money for Cherry blues.

One of the reasons I want to go without plate mounted switches. Having the opportunity to mod the 'board later may make the decision for a certain switch easier.

I'm also working on a switch. Mechanical but with a long tactile curve like a well known Japanese capacitive switch. A first trial setup went well. But this will take months at least and probably someone else will come out with something similar before I get it finished. Also it will not be cheap. But cool. :cool:

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Offline dlarellano

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« Reply #194 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 10:45:29 »

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #195 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 15:15:59 »
Well, the problem is, my order of preference is:

Lightweight BS > Cherry blues > Standard BS

And that's it. ;)

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #196 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 15:25:27 »
:)

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Offline wellington1869

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« Reply #197 on: Thu, 22 January 2009, 15:39:52 »
Quote from: lowpoly;19150

I'm also working on a switch. Mechanical but with a long tactile curve like a well known Japanese capacitive switch. A first trial setup went well. But this will take months at least and probably someone else will come out with something similar before I get it finished. Also it will not be cheap. But cool. :cool:


dont forget to have the activation occur before the tactile feedback ends.

and really, eventually it really should be available in light bs too. ;) I mean, come on.

and I hate hhkb style boards with their fancy cramped shortcuts that mess up all my painfully developed autohotkey code. so I still say eventually a freaking 'normal layout version' too please ;)

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Offline eugenius

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« Reply #198 on: Sat, 24 January 2009, 09:25:11 »
I would pay 500$ for a black programmable backlit ergoplus. :)

Does this keyboard fit in the Motion field case?

Link: http://www.tabletpc2.com/Review-MotionBluetoothKeyboardrandFieldCase.htm
Cherry ErgoPlus MX5000 + MX5700 / IBM Model M

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #199 on: Sat, 24 January 2009, 12:46:53 »
Quote from: eugenius;19455
I would pay 500$ for a black programmable backlit ergoplus. :)

Does this keyboard fit in the Motion field case?

Link: http://www.tabletpc2.com/Review-MotionBluetoothKeyboardrandFieldCase.htm

So will you Ritt-dye your ErgoPlus? :)

As for the case, the footprint of the 'board is roughly 12"x5" so you can put two in that case and still have room for a cable.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today