Author Topic: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards  (Read 13720 times)

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Offline hoggy

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(Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« on: Sat, 22 February 2014, 00:39:19 »
Does anyone have any photos, thoughts or links on any ergonomic keyboards that just aren't available anymore?

There was a boom of development around 1990, sadly, soon followed by a bust.

The typing injury faq showcases a wide range of design - (some of it still available).
http://www.tifaq.org/keyboards/

Here's a pdf version that was 'snapped' in 2002 here
« Last Edit: Wed, 26 February 2014, 07:36:38 by hoggy »
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Offline Findecanor

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #1 on: Sat, 22 February 2014, 02:11:06 »
* http://webwit.nl/input/ :P
* 【NEC】 Keyboard based on new input system (M system)

Thanks for the link to tifaq! I have been looking for info on a keyboard with no info whatsoever except on tifaq.. It did not show up in Google Image Search before, (but it does now apparently).
Edit: It is called the DataStealth, and all info about it had been on the web: protomic.com, which is down, and archive.org is also down... argh..  Apparently, it has been a research project at Dutch universities, and I am trying to find Dutch papers about it.
« Last Edit: Sat, 22 February 2014, 02:46:02 by Findecanor »
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Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #2 on: Sat, 22 February 2014, 02:34:36 »

Offline Snarfangel

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #3 on: Sat, 22 February 2014, 18:07:35 »
Does anyone have any photos, thoughts or links on any ergonomic keyboards that just aren't available anymore?

There was a boom of development around 1990, sadly, soon followed by a bust.

The typing injury faq showcases a wide range of design - (some of it still available).
http://www.tifaq.org/keyboards/




Echoing Findecanor, thank you for the link. I find these kind of collections fascinating, and spend far too much time reading them! :)

Offline berserkfan

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #4 on: Sat, 22 February 2014, 18:27:55 »
I notice the website is very old. Some parts were updated over 14 years ago.
Most of the modding can be done on your own once you break through the psychological barriers.

Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #5 on: Sat, 22 February 2014, 20:37:27 »
If you want another 20 year old FAQ, Matias used to maintain this one, as a student: http://edgarmatias.com/faq/

Offline hoggy

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #6 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 01:11:33 »
Jacobolus, Both of those links were new to me, thanks.

Findecanor, It was such a shame the DataStealth didn't really make it, the design is just amazing.  I managed to get in contact with the company about a year ago (it might have been a company that took them over - I can't remember).  All I got back was that they discontinued the project, but it might be possible to coax out a bit more.


(One keyboard design we've been missing out on - DataStealth)
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Offline hoggy

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #7 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 01:13:29 »
Oh, and there's the Buxton Collection
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Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #8 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 01:50:06 »
Edit: It is called the DataStealth, and all info about it had been on the web: protomic.com, which is down, and archive.org is also down... argh..
http://web.archive.org/web/20000601172323/http://www.protomic.com/products/products_01.htm

At one point there was apparently research content at Benjamin Rossen’s (the inventor) personal site http://www.iae.nl/users/rossen/ERGONOMICS/ergonomics_01.htm which (maybe?) moved to http://home.claranet.nl/users/rossen/ERGONOMICS/ergonomics_01.htm but robots.txt disallowed spidering the former, and all the wayback machine has for the latter is from >2006, and it’s just various 404 pages.

Here was another website of his in 2001, but unfortunately all the links point back to that iae.nl site, which disallowed spidering. :( http://web.archive.org/web/20011203233422/http://www.benjaminrossen.com/

It sounds like he did a Ph.D. project comparing a bunch of various existing ergonomic keyboards, before trying to make/market this DataStealth thingy.

Edit: Aha! Apparently in 2002 some of the useful content migrated to benjaminrossen.com: http://web.archive.org/web/20020331061621/http://www.benjaminrossen.com/

For example here’s a picture from another angle:


Though it looks like after some more research they continued to evolve their design: http://web.archive.org/web/20020816004317/http://www.benjaminrossen.com/KBD/html/keyboard_06.htm

And then made a version targeted at CAD work, with an embedded trackball (paging Kurplop!):
http://web.archive.org/web/20040815060043/http://www.benjaminrossen.com/KBD/html/keyboard_08.htm

Finally there’s this plea for investors with a link to a business plan pdf (unfortunately not archived):
http://web.archive.org/web/20040815055451/http://www.benjaminrossen.com/KBD/html/keyboard_09.htm
Edit, ok, here’s the business plan: http://web.archive.org/web/20050208120254/http://benjaminrossen.com/KBD/html/keyboard_08.htm

Looks like sometime in the year or two after 2004 they ran out of steam?

There was also for a while the site flinder.com, but unfortunately the wayback machine didn’t scrape most of the images:
http://web.archive.org/web/20031029173140/http://www.flinder.com/products/product_01.htm

This email is kind of interesting:
http://www.crynwr.com/cgi-bin/ezmlm-cgi?3:msp:9297

Quote
One of my projects was concerned with the design and testing of an ergonomically improved keyboard for professional data entry typists. We went through 31 design iterations before making six of them for a field trial. The design process required not only expert knowledge of how to use CAD solid modeling software, knowledge of plastic design, molds, of wall thickness in relation to material strengths, of clickable design for ease of assembly for when (and if) it went into production, and so on and on. These six models (only the last in the series) cost more than my automobile at its new price to make by laser sintering in polyamice, paint, finish, assemble, and test. Each model, that is. Each prototyped keyboard cost more than a new family sedan, and it took me years to get to the final design. That is what making  objects from drawings costs.
« Last Edit: Sun, 23 February 2014, 05:47:30 by jacobolus »

Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #9 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 03:46:47 »
http://web.archive.org/web/20010805085319/http://nsx.underbase.org/db/kbd/keyboard-survey.htm

This topic might as well be called “Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards”. :P

Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #10 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 03:52:07 »
Huh. I hadn’t seen this guy’s project before:

http://kisocd.sourceforge.net/en/kbd/nr5_6.htm

Offline jacobolus

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Offline yasuo

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #12 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 04:13:49 »
« Last Edit: Sun, 23 February 2014, 04:19:23 by yasuo »
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Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #13 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 04:42:43 »
Findecanor, It was such a shame the DataStealth didn't really make it, the design is just amazing.  I managed to get in contact with the company about a year ago (it might have been a company that took them over - I can't remember).  All I got back was that they discontinued the project, but it might be possible to coax out a bit more.
I wonder if anyone can track down a working email for Benjamin Rossen. All of his old domains seem to be defunct, which makes it tricky. He’d be the best person to ask.

Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #14 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 04:57:08 »

Offline hoggy

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #15 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 05:12:29 »
You've been busy!

Looks like I've got a lot of reading to catch up on.

I like the title, btw.

[edit] There's a ton of stuff on the ekapad web page - it's well worth a google search now and then.
« Last Edit: Sun, 23 February 2014, 05:14:06 by hoggy »
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Offline jacobolus

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« Last Edit: Sun, 23 February 2014, 05:34:43 by jacobolus »

Offline Findecanor

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Re: Extinct Ergo Keyboards
« Reply #17 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 05:34:02 »
I wonder if anyone can track down a working email for Benjamin Rossen. All of his old domains seem to be defunct, which makes it tricky. He’d be the best person to ask.
As I understand it, the DataStealth keyboard was discontinued, to the benefit of its successor the Flinder keyboard. There was info about that one on the domain www.flinder.com that I could find on the Internet Archive, but that one is also defunct now.

The web site www.benjaminrossen.com is up, but not everything works. You can navigate through the "site map" which is actually a list of pages that once existed...

There is interesting info about the development of the Datastealth and the successor, the Flinder keyboard starting at http://www.benjaminrossen.com/kbd/html/keyboard-01.htm
These pages seems to contain practically the same info as was on the old sites, although edited. It is more of a history of his work than an attempt to market the designs to investors.
Navigate to the next page through the links at the bottom - not the arrows.

I also found a page there called Alternative keyboards available today that show some interesting keyboards at the bottom that I have not seen before.

I was hoping to find research paper from some university, but so far no luck.
« Last Edit: Sun, 23 February 2014, 06:44:59 by Findecanor »
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Offline jacobolus

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Offline yasuo

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Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #20 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 06:50:23 »
Oh, everyone’s probably seen it, but Xah Lee’s site has some great info:

http://xahlee.info/kbd/ergonomic_keyboards.html
http://xahlee.info/kbd/ergonomic_keyboards_2.html

Offline hoggy

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #21 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 12:41:04 »
The Benjamin Rossen site has some interesting photos -















It was the first time that I've come across these - so thanks for the link!
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Offline Snarfangel

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #22 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 17:28:42 »
I like the mean green typing machine with the trackball. I wish I had one to play with!

Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #23 on: Sun, 23 February 2014, 18:18:17 »
I like the mean green typing machine with the trackball. I wish I had one to play with!
From their business plan document, it sounds like the had some kind of interesting trackball patent(s), and were aiming these things at CAD pros. It definitely seems like a generally useful device. Nowadays, it would probably make sense to add a touchscreen somewhere too.

I wonder if anyone can find those patents. I didn’t see anything in a google patent search.

Offline Findecanor

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #24 on: Mon, 24 February 2014, 11:44:01 »
The white/grey big ones with red/orange home row is the green model without trackball. According to the text, only six were made through 3D-printing, and each one cost more than his car cost new.
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Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #25 on: Mon, 24 February 2014, 12:42:43 »
According to the text, only six were made through 3D-printing, and each one cost more than his car cost new.
Huh, yeah, I wonder what the images are of the previous prototypes (e.g. the DataStealth), and how those were made.
« Last Edit: Mon, 24 February 2014, 12:47:20 by jacobolus »

Offline wasabah

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #26 on: Mon, 24 February 2014, 19:11:58 »
ErgoDox Classic | Logitech G400 | Logitech Marble | Logitech M570 | Logitech M235 | Logitech M305

Offline yasuo

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #27 on: Mon, 24 February 2014, 21:50:04 »
Logitech MK220 Colemak DH
SplitSyml by Moz BlacksMx fuk blacks

2/3 8.5pm                                          in de la my september month ya da all get my fukka "fake message"

Offline hoggy

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Offline jacobolus

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Re: Extinct web pages about extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #29 on: Wed, 26 February 2014, 15:53:33 »
Wow, that Maltron Executive has a layout that I really would not like at all. :-)

I guess that’s for people used to a Maltron who want something thinner to take on the road?

Offline hoggy

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #30 on: Thu, 27 February 2014, 11:55:29 »
I wonder if it was an attempt to get a classier look.  The navigation keys suggest that aesthetics might have been more important.

Funnily enough, Maltron sells bags for the larger keyboards, but I don't remember any that would fit the executive.
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Offline nomaded

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #31 on: Thu, 27 February 2014, 13:16:04 »
I wonder if it was an attempt to get a classier look.  The navigation keys suggest that aesthetics might have been more important.

Funnily enough, Maltron sells bags for the larger keyboards, but I don't remember any that would fit the executive.

Based on the name alone, i would guess that it was designed to go into a fancy office of some higher up executive with a shiny steel and glass desk.
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Offline jacobolus

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #32 on: Tue, 25 March 2014, 03:09:43 »
Well I tried sending a note to all the emails for Benjamin Rossen (of DataStealth, etc.) I could find online. 3 of the 4 failed immediately; we’ll see if the last one still goes through to anyone.

Offline jacobolus

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #33 on: Sun, 09 November 2014, 13:55:34 »
The Daewoo KOBO game console, 1990, and its Daewoo CPC-330K keyboard: http://www.msx.org/forum/msx-talk/hardware/zemmix-kobo-until-now-unknown


Offline jacobolus

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #34 on: Tue, 28 July 2015, 17:05:32 »
Now here’s a fun picture, via reddit:


http://www.gettyimages.de/detail/nachrichtenfoto/futuristic-office-composed-of-a-typewriter-television-nachrichtenfoto/104417789

"A Futurist Desk In Hanover In 1969: A futuristic office composed of a typewriter, television screens, a video recorder and a photocopier are presented at the exhibition of Hanover in Germany."

Offline kurplop

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #35 on: Tue, 28 July 2015, 18:36:34 »
For some reason, that picture reminded me of story I had heard about President James Garfield. Apparently he use to entertains friends by having them call out quotes from Shakespeare. He would then simultaneously translate them in Latin and Greek, writing them out with both hands.

Offline Snarfangel

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #36 on: Tue, 28 July 2015, 19:24:13 »
Keyboard Porn!
https://geektimes.ru/post/258534/

Okay, so not all of them are extinct -- there are a fair number of modded ErgoDox -- but a lot of them are obscure. And you'll need to use Google Translate or something unless you read Russian.


Offline jacobolus

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #37 on: Tue, 28 July 2015, 19:41:21 »
Keyboard Porn! https://geektimes.ru/post/258534/ Okay, so not all of them are extinct -- there are a fair number of modded ErgoDox -- but a lot of them are obscure. And you'll need to use Google Translate or something unless you read Russian.
Great collection of stuff, a lot of it from various geekhack threads. I think this page has been linked from geekhack before, but I’m only finding links to others of his posts. Written by geekhack user philpirj.

See also: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=42577 https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=45154 http://habrahabr.ru/post/177347/
« Last Edit: Tue, 28 July 2015, 20:01:24 by jacobolus »

Offline Eszett

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Re: (Extinct web pages about) extinct ergo keyboards
« Reply #38 on: Fri, 31 July 2015, 19:16:10 »
Now here’s a fun picture, via reddit:
Show Image


http://www.gettyimages.de/detail/nachrichtenfoto/futuristic-office-composed-of-a-typewriter-television-nachrichtenfoto/104417789

"A Futurist Desk In Hanover In 1969: A futuristic office composed of a typewriter, television screens, a video recorder and a photocopier are presented at the exhibition of Hanover in Germany."

Absolutely astonishing! Split screen, split keyboard, together with aesthetics similar to Stanley Kubrick's.