Author Topic: Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint  (Read 296190 times)

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Offline timw4mail

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #400 on: Wed, 28 October 2009, 11:56:15 »
Quote from: lowpoly;128801
Thanks. :-)

A non-staggered board would require even more custom keycaps. So this is probably not going to happen.

As for Opera, my ambition to deliver cross-browser compatible programming collapsed after it worked in IE8. Just checked the site in Opera 10. Looks like Opera finally renders pixel-sized fonts correctly. I'll look into the JavaScript issues. Thanks for bringing this up.

Really, I think you could use more of one size of keycap, rather than more custom keycaps. It would require a different PCB, probably, though.
Pointing devices- CH Products DT255 (With Lapis Lazuli ball), Razer Salmosa, Logitech MX400
Buckling Springs - IBM Model M 1391401 (1987) & IBM Model F AT
Cherry MX Blue Switches - iOne Scorpius M10 "otaku"(2009) & OCN-branded Ducky keyboard
Cherry MX Brown Switches - Compaq MX11800 & Cherry G80-8963LUBUS-2 (MX8100) & Filco FKBN91M/JB (Japanese Tenkeyless)

Cherry MX Black Switches -  US Micro Products Metal Keyboard USMP-KX065-TB-USB-A
Fake Cherry MX White Switches - Qtronix Scorpius 32 keypad &  Chicony KB-5191
White round SMK Switches - Gold VTech label keyboard
SMK blue Monterrey Switches - Chicony KB-5181
Damped tactile ALPS - Apple AEKII
Blue NEC Switches - NEC APC-H412


Quote from: bigpook;129625
: ) life is like a box of webwit. you never know what you are going to get.



Offline lowpoly

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #401 on: Wed, 28 October 2009, 12:29:15 »
It would require a different pcb.

But if you want to fit a non-staggered layout into the existing (to be) case you will also need different caps around the pointing stick. And some more keys at the left and right borders. Let's say we keep the number row. For the tab key to fit with the number row it would have to have a width of either one or two regular keys. But a 2x key for cylindrical cross-section probably does not exist so in would be custom.

Might be easier with non-cylindrical POS keys but this would require a different custom spacebar.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline timw4mail

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #402 on: Wed, 28 October 2009, 12:40:17 »
Quote from: lowpoly;128825
It would require a different pcb.

But if you want to fit a non-staggered layout into the existing (to be) case you will also need different caps around the pointing stick. And some more keys at the left and right borders. Let's say we keep the number row. For the tab key to fit with the number row it would have to have a width of either one or two regular keys. But a 2x key for cylindrical cross-section probably does not exist so in would be custom.

Might be easier with non-cylindrical POS keys but this would require a different custom spacebar.

Or, you could make it without the pointing stick, use the same size tab keys, and do something like this:
http://timshomepage.net/layout.php
The "lowpoly" layout.
Pointing devices- CH Products DT255 (With Lapis Lazuli ball), Razer Salmosa, Logitech MX400
Buckling Springs - IBM Model M 1391401 (1987) & IBM Model F AT
Cherry MX Blue Switches - iOne Scorpius M10 "otaku"(2009) & OCN-branded Ducky keyboard
Cherry MX Brown Switches - Compaq MX11800 & Cherry G80-8963LUBUS-2 (MX8100) & Filco FKBN91M/JB (Japanese Tenkeyless)

Cherry MX Black Switches -  US Micro Products Metal Keyboard USMP-KX065-TB-USB-A
Fake Cherry MX White Switches - Qtronix Scorpius 32 keypad &  Chicony KB-5191
White round SMK Switches - Gold VTech label keyboard
SMK blue Monterrey Switches - Chicony KB-5181
Damped tactile ALPS - Apple AEKII
Blue NEC Switches - NEC APC-H412


Quote from: bigpook;129625
: ) life is like a box of webwit. you never know what you are going to get.



Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #403 on: Wed, 28 October 2009, 12:49:10 »
Nice css on that page.

That wouldn't fit the case though, Backspace would have to be wider.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline timw4mail

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #404 on: Wed, 28 October 2009, 13:03:28 »
Quote from: lowpoly;128839
Nice css on that page.

That wouldn't fit the case though, Backspace would have to be wider.

That's a shame.  It would certainly be nice to have the opportunity to actually have a non-staggered mechanical keyboard.
Pointing devices- CH Products DT255 (With Lapis Lazuli ball), Razer Salmosa, Logitech MX400
Buckling Springs - IBM Model M 1391401 (1987) & IBM Model F AT
Cherry MX Blue Switches - iOne Scorpius M10 "otaku"(2009) & OCN-branded Ducky keyboard
Cherry MX Brown Switches - Compaq MX11800 & Cherry G80-8963LUBUS-2 (MX8100) & Filco FKBN91M/JB (Japanese Tenkeyless)

Cherry MX Black Switches -  US Micro Products Metal Keyboard USMP-KX065-TB-USB-A
Fake Cherry MX White Switches - Qtronix Scorpius 32 keypad &  Chicony KB-5191
White round SMK Switches - Gold VTech label keyboard
SMK blue Monterrey Switches - Chicony KB-5181
Damped tactile ALPS - Apple AEKII
Blue NEC Switches - NEC APC-H412


Quote from: bigpook;129625
: ) life is like a box of webwit. you never know what you are going to get.



Offline Hakhu

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #405 on: Thu, 29 October 2009, 02:46:46 »
Quote from: lowpoly;128774
I'll keep it in mind. There are a lot of color combinations already, several colors times several languages and different physical layouts. Probably not even all of those will make it into the production configurator.


You might not even need to include "new" colors. Maybe just allow to choose two of the existing keycap colors for a "typical" duo-tone layout. (I love the look of the white/grey HHKB 2 Pro.)

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #406 on: Fri, 30 October 2009, 11:59:14 »
Quote from: Hakhu;128997
You might not even need to include "new" colors. Maybe just allow to choose two of the existing keycap colors for a "typical" duo-tone layout. (I love the look of the white/grey HHKB 2 Pro.)
That'll depend on the final logistics, I think. I have separate keycap sets already on my list for the shop.

And I finished the german translation which was surprisingly difficult. I rarely talk about keyboards in german, I guess.

Opera bugs next.
« Last Edit: Fri, 30 October 2009, 12:03:25 by lowpoly »

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline fuzzybyte

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #407 on: Fri, 30 October 2009, 15:47:27 »
i hope there's an option to remove the dip from left ctrl (tab) key.
also, i suppose it's not possible to have an option to also include function key row? i guess it wouldn't so 'mini' anymore, but using some space for one more key row doesn't hurt much.

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #408 on: Mon, 02 November 2009, 11:08:10 »
Quote from: fuzzybyte;129444
i hope there's an option to remove the dip from left ctrl (tab) key.
This will depend on the options the keycap supplier provides. In any case, it will not be a configurator option because different switch pcbs would be required.

Quote from: fuzzybyte;129444
also, i suppose it's not possible to have an option to also include function key row? i guess it wouldn't so 'mini' anymore, but using some space for one more key row doesn't hurt much.
This would require a new case, switch pcb, skeleton, etc. Which means $$$. So that's not very likely.

Opera works now too. Somewhen during development I overwrote the configurator source with an older version which broke the configurator for IE as well. If you tried it with IE please try again.
« Last Edit: Mon, 02 November 2009, 11:22:49 by lowpoly »

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline clickclack

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« Reply #409 on: Tue, 03 November 2009, 16:12:20 »
Quote from: lowpoly;129919

..... If you tried it with IE please try again.


THANKS!!!! =D
I just checked it out again, and I finally got to configure it and see what different things would look like, I love it!

I really wish you the best on this, I am excited all over again after looking at your site.

The funny thing is I never really thought about how tiny this would be until just now! I looked at some of my standard keyboards and just pictured them without the board around the main area and it is really, really small! That really does seem to be a nice size.
:)
862+ keyboards and counting!   R.I.P.ster          Vendor link ->Clack Factory

Offline fuzzybyte

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« Reply #410 on: Wed, 04 November 2009, 04:07:39 »
will the cable be detachable?

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #411 on: Wed, 04 November 2009, 04:57:42 »
Quote from: clickclack;130231
THANKS!!!! =D
I just checked it out again, and I finally got to configure it and see what different things would look like, I love it!

I really wish you the best on this, I am excited all over again after looking at your site.

The funny thing is I never really thought about how tiny this would be until just now! I looked at some of my standard keyboards and just pictured them without the board around the main area and it is really, really small! That really does seem to be a nice size.
:)

Thanks! As for size, it will still fit into the hole left in the donor G80-3000.

Quote from: fuzzybyte;130299
will the cable be detachable?

Yes.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #412 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 07:12:06 »
The Japanese translation doesn't progress so I decided not to wait any longer and add that later.

So here is the preview site:

http://www.guru-board.com

If you see any glaring errors please let me know.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline chimera15

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #413 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 07:36:23 »
Wow, you're going to sell it!!?  Amazing!! How much? Do you know the price yet?
Alps boards:
white real complicated: 1x modified siiig minitouch kb1903,  hhkb light2 english steampunk hack, wireless siig minitouch hack
white with rubber damper(cream)+clicky springs: 2x modified siig minitouch kb1903 1x modified siig minitouch kb1948
white fake simplified:   1x white smk-85, 1x Steampunk compact board hack
white real simplified: 1x unitek k-258
low profile: 1x mint m1242 in box
black: ultra mini wrist keyboard hack
blue: Japanese hhk2 lite hack, 1x siig minitouch pcb/doubleshot dc-2014 caps. kb1903, 1x modified kb1948 Siig minitouch
rainbow test boards:  mck-84sx


Offline bigpook

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« Reply #414 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 07:38:23 »
nice work. 4Q 2010? what is your pricing. I am  on the fence as to getting a HHKB for Xms. I may pass and wait for yours to ship. something in a brown cherry would be nice.
HHKB Pro 2 : Unicomp Spacesaver : IBM Model M : DasIII    

Offline Hakhu

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #415 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 07:56:52 »
So does that mean, that the preview site is now officially open to the "public"?

I've just skimmed through the site a little and so far everything looks pretty good.
I've noticed a few minor glitches, like a missing comma once and rather colloquial word I wouldn't have used in the German version, but nothing major.

There's a little burst of excitement every time you update this post. :)

Offline Hakhu

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #416 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 07:58:09 »
Quote from: webwit;140057
... would be even better if it changed without hitting the preview button), I hope you can make that a reality.


Definitely!

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #417 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 09:05:53 »
Quote from: chimera15;140055
Wow, you're going to sell it!!?  Amazing!! How much? Do you know the price yet?
There are way too many unknown factors yet for any pricing.

Quote from: bigpook;140056
nice work. 4Q 2010? what is your pricing. I am  on the fence as to getting a HHKB for Xms. I may pass and wait for yours to ship. something in a brown cherry would be nice.
Q4 2010 is a rough estimate. However, Ms Keyboard said another small keyboard will come in the "near future" so you might at least want to wait for that.

Quote from: webwit;140057
Looking very good! Configurator still rocks (would be even better if it changed without hitting the preview button), I hope you can make that a reality.
Thanks. After hitting preview I also load the switch view and the first rotate pic. So you couldn't just click through the colors for ex.  

Quote from: Hakhu;140063
So does that mean, that the preview site is now officially open to the "public"?

I've just skimmed through the site a little and so far everything looks pretty good.
I've noticed a few minor glitches, like a missing comma once and rather colloquial word I wouldn't have used in the German version, but nothing major.
Yes, it's public now.

If you don't mind please PM me that word so I can change it.
« Last Edit: Tue, 08 December 2009, 09:09:56 by lowpoly »

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline itlnstln

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #418 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 09:58:10 »
Gesundheit.


Offline elbowglue

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« Reply #419 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 11:22:59 »
This looks awesome.  Does anyone else think the alt and the swirly G button should be transposed tho? (from left to right ctrl-swirl-alt-spacebar-alt-swirl-menu-ctrl)
« Last Edit: Tue, 08 December 2009, 11:28:18 by elbowglue »
My keyboards: Filco Cherry Blue Tenkeyless(daily home), Compaq MX11800 (modded to blacks), Compaq "MX 84u",  Wellington\'s Dampened Endurapro, Pinkalicious Filco Blue Cherry, Chicony KB-5191, Chicony KB-5181, Desko MOS 5023 UP "elbowglue" spos (modded to blues), Siig Minitouch (monterey blue), SMK-88 (blue cherries), Ricercar SPOS
Smallest to biggest keyboards in inches (Length X Height) - Length is most important for a midline mouse position

KBC Poker: 11.6 x 3.9 - HHKB: 11.6 x 4.3 - Siig Minitouch (Geekhack Space Saver): 11.6 x 6 - Deck/Tg3 82: 12 x 6 - Noppoo Choc Mini 12.4 x 5.3 - Compaq "MX 84u": 13.1 x 7.5 - Filco Tenkeyless: 14 x 5.3 - Cherry "ricercar spos" G86-62410EUAGSA: 14 x 7.75 - Topre Realforce 86u: 14.4 x 6.65 - Desko "elbowglue spos" MOS 5023 UP: 14.5 x 8.4 - IBM Model M Spacesaver: 15.3 x 7 - G80-1800: 15.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-125B: 16 x 7.3 - Compaq Mx11800, Cherry G80-11900: 16.25 x 7.5 - Filco Standard: 17.3 x 5.4 - Unicomp Endurapro: 17.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-135B: 18.3 x 6.0 - Cherry G80-3000: 18.5 x 7.6 - IBM Model M, Unicomp Customizer: 19.3 x 8.27

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #420 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 11:36:19 »
The position next to the spacebar is the most convenient for thumb activation. And the 2nd layer cursor keys will get more use than Alt combinations. But it's easy to change: just swap the keys and change the programming.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline rdjack21

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #421 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 11:49:27 »
Quote from: lowpoly;140133
The position next to the spacebar is the most convenient for thumb activation. And the 2nd layer cursor keys will get more use than Alt combinations. But it's easy to change: just swap the keys and change the programming.


The programability of this board is what is going to make me get one. Even though I would prefer Topre switches I can live with the Cherry browns.
Keyboards
Topre Capacitive: Realforce 87U, Realforce 86U, HHKB Pro 2, Topre MD01B0, Topre HE0100, Sun Short Type, OEM NEO CS (x2), NISSHO Electronics KB106DE
Buckling Spring: IBM Model M Space Saver (1291472), Unicomp Customizer x 2
Cherry Brown: Filco FKBN87M/EB, Compaq MX11800
Black Alps: ABS M1
Not so great boards Rare Spring over dome OKI, Sun rack keyboard

Trackballs - Trackman Wheel (3), Trackman marble (2)
Keyboards I still want to get - Happy Hacking Keyboard Pro 2 the White version, Realforce 23U number pad in black and maybe white, μTRON ergo board with Topre switches.
Previously owned - [size=0]SiiG MiniTouch (White Alps), Scorpius M10 (Blue Cherry), IBM Model M13[/size]

Offline Rajagra

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« Reply #422 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 15:31:11 »
I know what I want for Christmas next year!

Small observation: In the configurator, "Switch view" - can be read as change view, which is what the area to the right of it does. Took me a while to work out it was literally a view of the switches.

I assume the 2 physical layouts on offer are ANSI & ISO
Quote

ANSI layout: 61 keys, no keys between letter keys and left shift, two keys between L and Enter, horizontal enter
ISO layout: 62 keys, one key between letter keys and left shift, three keys between L and Enter, vertical enter


Any chance of a hybrid Super-ANSI (ANSISO?) layout:
62 keys, one key between letter keys and left shift, two keys between L and Enter, horizontal enter ?
Or would that require different tooling making it too obscure to be worthwhile?

Offline ak_nala

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #423 on: Tue, 08 December 2009, 18:10:08 »
Sorry if this has been asked before - is a Windows key implemented anywhere?

Reason I ask is that in order to be fully Mac compatible we need a Windows key as it automatically maps to be the absolutely essential Mac Command key.

Remapping in software is possible, but that doesn't work during the boot sequence for going into single user and the like, so something in firmware is best.
No matter where you go, there you are...

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #424 on: Wed, 09 December 2009, 03:28:15 »
You can map anything to anything on that board, so you could implement one.

Anyway, really liking the Red Alert scheme.

Offline itlnstln

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« Reply #425 on: Wed, 09 December 2009, 08:09:29 »
The Red Alert is nice.  I am digging the chocolate bottom with cream keys.  Yum.
 
 
(I haven't had breakfast this morning.)


Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #426 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 03:33:38 »
Quote from: Rajagra;140206
Small observation: In the configurator, "Switch view" - can be read as change view, which is what the area to the right of it does. Took me a while to work out it was literally a view of the switches.

Maybe I should add a help button, I didn't want 'full size' buttons in that area.

Quote from: Rajagra;140206
Any chance of a hybrid Super-ANSI (ANSISO?) layout:
62 keys, one key between letter keys and left shift, two keys between L and Enter, horizontal enter ?
Or would that require different tooling making it too obscure to be worthwhile?

I don't think that would sell in numbers? However, I wonder if ANSI and ISO can be combined on the same pcb. Would require only one pcb then and it could easily be modded.

Quote from: ak_nala;140264
Sorry if this has been asked before - is a Windows key implemented anywhere?

Reason I ask is that in order to be fully Mac compatible we need a Windows key as it automatically maps to be the absolutely essential Mac Command key.

Remapping in software is possible, but that doesn't work during the boot sequence for going into single user and the like, so something in firmware is best.

Currently I have it on the context menu key (black version). Easy to program.

Quote from: bhtooefr;140378
You can map anything to anything on that board, so you could implement one.

Anyway, really liking the Red Alert scheme.

One of my favorite color combinations too. It's supposed to be one of those 'Hot Rod' colors, I think it requires a golden base coat.

After using this 'board for some time I noticed some things:

What I like so far (beside things already mentioned):
  • JKLI cursor layout. When I don't use the Mini I have an Autohotkey script to emulate the layout.
  • Cherry blacks. I know most won't agree with me here but I enjoy the smooth action ATM.

Needs improvement:

  • Paint chips off in some places. Top edge of the body will need some plastic enclosure. Also the areas around the plugs and the mouse buttons will need plastic protection.
  • Noisy space bar. I think it's the levelling mechanism. I bought some grease today.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline Mnemonix

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #427 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 03:45:08 »
Maybe it's too late now, but did you consider adding a third mouse button?

The middle mouse button is frequently used on X11 for copy-and-paste actions (where the middle button does the paste part). I suspect middle button emulation could be uncomfortable on this design, requiring to press the left and right button at the same time.

Offline Hakhu

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #428 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 03:51:54 »
In the F.A.Q.s it says there will be a third mouse button in the final version.

Quote from: lowpoly;140824
  • Cherry blacks. I know most won't agree with me here but I enjoy the smooth action ATM.

I agree. I had been using Cherry Blacks for some time and they are much better than they are made out to be. They've just got a bad reputation it seems.
« Last Edit: Thu, 10 December 2009, 03:57:04 by Hakhu »


Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #430 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 05:00:20 »
The grease worked perfectly. I attached some sound samples. Don't expect Ripster quality on these. I pressed the spacebar a few times, then some regular keys, then the space bar again. In reality everything is much quieter than the sound samples suggest.

The levelling mechanism rattled. This is the one I relocated so maybe this was the reason. Anyway, the noise is gone which is a double win because I use the spacebar for backspace as well (fn + spacebar).
« Last Edit: Thu, 10 December 2009, 05:12:07 by lowpoly »

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline Rajagra

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« Reply #431 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 05:17:35 »
That's quite a difference in sound. Who would've thought humble grease could change the sound of things so drastically? First buckling springs, now space bar mechanisms. I may keep some on my desk for ad-hoc improvements. :smile:

Offline nanu

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« Reply #432 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 06:37:03 »
Quote from: Rajagra;140846
That's quite a difference in sound. Who would've thought humble grease could change the sound of things so drastically? First buckling springs, now space bar mechanisms. I may keep some on my desk for ad-hoc improvements. :smile:


Rattling should not be overly apparent if the stabilizing slots are sized to the diameter of the stabilizing wire.  The taller/looser the slot the more rattle you get.

Grease on the leveling slots dampens or rids this rattle you get also when you merely graze the spacebar (or if typing keys, such as M, at a sufficiently low angle).  But now I'm bothered to re-lube the stabilizers after deep cleanings, which is also why I've delayed cleanings. :yawn:

So this makes me wonder if stabilizers could be made of some dampening rubber-like material that doesn't need to be greased to remain elastic or not dry out, yet still function crisply. :tape:

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #433 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 07:30:58 »
Quote from: rdjack21;140142
The programability of this board is what is going to make me get one. Even though I would prefer Topre switches I can live with the Cherry browns.

Here is a short video of my proof-of-concept switch. Ignore the background sound (typing and voices).

Long tactile curve, nearly silent, activates somewhere in the middle of the travel. Unfortunately it needs expensive parts. I won't go into details right now:


The clicking you hear is the pencil hitting the keycap. There is no sound from the switch unless bottomed out which is sort of dampened right now.

Edit: It also doesn't use rubber.
« Last Edit: Thu, 10 December 2009, 09:07:13 by lowpoly »

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline timw4mail

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #434 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 07:34:10 »
Quote from: lowpoly;140881
Here is a short video of my proof-of-concept switch. Ignore the background sound (typing and voices).

Long tactile curve, nearly silent, activates somewhere in the middle of the travel. Unfortunately it needs expensive parts. I won't go into details right now:


The clicking you hear is the pencil hitting the keycap. There is no sound from the switch unless bottomed out which is sort of dampened right now.

Is it based on any switch?
Pointing devices- CH Products DT255 (With Lapis Lazuli ball), Razer Salmosa, Logitech MX400
Buckling Springs - IBM Model M 1391401 (1987) & IBM Model F AT
Cherry MX Blue Switches - iOne Scorpius M10 "otaku"(2009) & OCN-branded Ducky keyboard
Cherry MX Brown Switches - Compaq MX11800 & Cherry G80-8963LUBUS-2 (MX8100) & Filco FKBN91M/JB (Japanese Tenkeyless)

Cherry MX Black Switches -  US Micro Products Metal Keyboard USMP-KX065-TB-USB-A
Fake Cherry MX White Switches - Qtronix Scorpius 32 keypad &  Chicony KB-5191
White round SMK Switches - Gold VTech label keyboard
SMK blue Monterrey Switches - Chicony KB-5181
Damped tactile ALPS - Apple AEKII
Blue NEC Switches - NEC APC-H412


Quote from: bigpook;129625
: ) life is like a box of webwit. you never know what you are going to get.



Offline lowpoly

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Mini Keyboard with Trackpoint
« Reply #435 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 07:38:08 »
Quote from: nanu;140867
Rattling should not be overly apparent if the stabilizing slots are sized to the diameter of the stabilizing wire.  The taller/looser the slot the more rattle you get.

I think the parts are lose to avoid binding. pcb placement may add a little tension then which could also dampen the sound. And maybe I removed this tension when relocating the mechanism. Pure speculation of course. I tried one of my G80-1800s and it rattles as well but less than the Mini did.

Quote from: nanu;140867
So this makes me wonder if stabilizers could be made of some dampening rubber-like material that doesn't need to be greased to remain elastic or not dry out, yet still function crisply. :tape:

That would be nice.

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Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #436 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 07:40:04 »
Quote from: timw4mail;140882
Is it based on any switch?


Based? No.

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Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #437 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 08:20:37 »
Quote from: lowpoly;140824
I don't think that would sell in numbers? However, I wonder if ANSI and ISO can be combined on the same pcb. Would require only one pcb then and it could easily be modded.


They can be, although you'll need your keys to be molded to have a Cherry MX-shaped stabilizer on any keys that are different in the layout, because you can't center the switch under left shift or enter.

All Model Ms use the same membrane and case for a certain time period, with the differences being keycaps and positioning of the switches.

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #438 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 09:14:17 »
Quote from: bhtooefr;140895
They can be, although you'll need your keys to be molded to have a Cherry MX-shaped stabilizer on any keys that are different in the layout, because you can't center the switch under left shift or enter.

A new key mold is probably more expensive than another pcb. I thought of two sets of holes for ex. for the left shift key. One set with switch and two stabilizer assemblies and one set with two switches.

I just pulled the left shift key and I don't think it will work. That would be 25 drill holes over the area of two switches. Needs CAD to figure out.

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Offline rdjack21

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« Reply #439 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 10:21:05 »
Quote from: lowpoly;140881
Here is a short video of my proof-of-concept switch. Ignore the background sound (typing and voices).

Long tactile curve, nearly silent, activates somewhere in the middle of the travel. Unfortunately it needs expensive parts. I won't go into details right now:



The clicking you hear is the pencil hitting the keycap. There is no sound from the switch unless bottomed out which is sort of dampened right now.

Edit: It also doesn't use rubber.


Hey I'm willing to pay for a Topre so if you keep in the same ball park price wise and the feel is there I'll try it. It also looks like the activation force is going to be low as well which is another plus from my perspective. Now that you have one key working it is time to make some more and see how it feels to actually type on your new switch. If that works out build some more and send them or sell them to those willing to cough up some cash and see what we think about it. If nothing else Topre has proven that there is a market for expensive keyboards if you market it correctly and it is a quality product. From my perspective key feel is a priority and if that means I have to pay for it I will. What ever you do don't compromise on the feel to save cost even if that means the eventual keyboard that will use this switch will be expensive because their are those of us that will pay your price if it is good. But it is true that this will regulate your new switch to a small segment of the market but that small segment can be profitable.

Oh forgot to mention if you made the mounting pins such that they could just be poped into the same location as say a Cherry MX switch then you really only have to work on the switch itself because you already have a board to put them in.
Keyboards
Topre Capacitive: Realforce 87U, Realforce 86U, HHKB Pro 2, Topre MD01B0, Topre HE0100, Sun Short Type, OEM NEO CS (x2), NISSHO Electronics KB106DE
Buckling Spring: IBM Model M Space Saver (1291472), Unicomp Customizer x 2
Cherry Brown: Filco FKBN87M/EB, Compaq MX11800
Black Alps: ABS M1
Not so great boards Rare Spring over dome OKI, Sun rack keyboard

Trackballs - Trackman Wheel (3), Trackman marble (2)
Keyboards I still want to get - Happy Hacking Keyboard Pro 2 the White version, Realforce 23U number pad in black and maybe white, μTRON ergo board with Topre switches.
Previously owned - [size=0]SiiG MiniTouch (White Alps), Scorpius M10 (Blue Cherry), IBM Model M13[/size]

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #440 on: Thu, 10 December 2009, 11:34:22 »
It has about 6 millimeters right now. Just a result of the parts I had at hand. There is too much travel at the start, with 4mm it would be perfect. I would like to have more at the end of the travel but I don't think it will work with this principle.

The biggest limiting factor for more key travel is probably the absolute height of the middle row (should be something like 30mm).

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Offline jedidove

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« Reply #441 on: Sun, 13 December 2009, 01:47:12 »
Can someone fill me in on the "stepped" control key, or dipped, or whatever you call it. I feel like I'm missing out on some niche style or something. What is the purpose or advantage of it, it just looks annoying :/

Offline Rajagra

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« Reply #442 on: Sun, 13 December 2009, 02:14:26 »
Quote from: jedidove;141933
Can someone fill me in on the "stepped" control key, or dipped, or whatever you call it. I feel like I'm missing out on some niche style or something. What is the purpose or advantage of it, it just looks annoying :/

I suspect it's to help place your fingers on the home keys without looking.
It isn't a new idea:

Offline Xuan

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« Reply #443 on: Sun, 13 December 2009, 16:38:05 »
I thought it was to prevent accidental presses in case of CapsLock, or in the case of the XT F because they might not had proper stabilizers for big keys, or something alike (?)

Offline sixty

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« Reply #444 on: Sun, 13 December 2009, 18:08:03 »
Quote from: Xuan;142080
I thought it was to prevent accidental presses in case of CapsLock, or in the case of the XT F because they might not had proper stabilizers for big keys, or something alike (?)


I'm assuming the original design was to save costs on some boards.. I'm not sure though. If you make a key shaped like that you won't need any stabilizers because pushing it off center won't happen.

Offline jedidove

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« Reply #445 on: Sun, 13 December 2009, 21:14:14 »
Still not sure I get it....

Anyway, whatever the purpose, why is it on this board? I could see it being moot on a rarely used key like capslock, but on control, it seems like a pretty big detriment.

Offline bhtooefr

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« Reply #446 on: Sun, 13 December 2009, 21:35:44 »
Probably because the keycap manufacturer's keycap for that location is stepped?

Also, it could be remapped to Caps Lock.

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #447 on: Mon, 14 December 2009, 06:36:27 »
Whether the production version will have a stepped Ctrl/Capslock key will depend on the keycap manufacturer. Cherry caps have that step.

Miniguru thread at GH // The Apple M0110 Today

Offline lowpoly

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« Reply #448 on: Mon, 14 December 2009, 11:14:58 »
Wouldn't that be the wrong row?

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Offline PRISONER 24601

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« Reply #449 on: Tue, 15 December 2009, 03:10:36 »
Ok so I've been reading this thread for two days now, bit by bit.

This is amazing. Lowpoly, hats off to you. The design of this keyboard is impeccable. It's perfect, pretty much. It's amazing watching this thing evolve throughout the last, what, year or so?

I wish that I could do something for the project (other than buying a few of them, obviously) that might actually aid in the development. Well, it looks like you're pretty much done with development and you need to find someone for manufacturing/tooling? Do you need investors? Sales reps? Buzz generators?

I think this product needs a big viral-style marketing effort at the least. IIRC  a lot of niche items start like that. Are you planning on showing the item at trade shows? The computer "enthusiast" market has been pretty stale lately, and the small form factor + simple layout might convince some distributers/retailers to help you "launch" the product.

No matter the price, I think quality matters. I wouldn't rush anything out or skimp on any 'luxury' aspect of this board. The very first run of these babies should be totally bulletproof. I believe that the #1 killer of enthusiast-targeted products is ANY public perception of low-quality. You get a couple people complaining about sticky keys, paint chipping, transpostion errors, compatibility issues, or anything like that... The whole community starts to bandwagon. To reiterate what I just said- I don't care if the product retails at $300, as long as it's a quality product, 100% reliable and solid as a rock, that "enthusiast" market will bite.

Anyway, I'm preaching to the choir here. You guys on the team will do marketing right, i'm just ranting and raving.

Awesome, awesome idea.
Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.
G80-3000LSCRC-2 (MX), "Ricercar" G86-6241OEUAGSA (MX), MX11800 (MX), AEKII (ALPS), AEK (ALPS) Apple Keyboard A9M0330 (ALPS), IBM Model F XT (Bucking Spring), IBM Space Saver 1391472 (Bucking Spring).