Author Topic: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason  (Read 5959 times)

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Offline bpiphany

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The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 10:02:28 »
This is something I've been working on for a long time, on and off. Finally I sat down long enough to finish something up =) And Santa came a few days early, driving a FedEx truck.

I've been asked numerous times to make a "Phantom 2". I haven't been very keen on doing that. It's already something I've done, and I like to have new ideas, and make new things. I also wanted to incorporate my own symmetric stagger layouts into the next replacement main board. Force the option upon people. Can't you guys see it's superior?!! =D

Anyway, lousy pictures, but here it is!

121337-0
121339-1


A main board intended to fit into numerous full size (and TKL) Costar cases (*none tested so far). As opposed to the Costar Matrix, the Sane Matrix has an intuitive 6 rows by 22 columns matrix. That of course requires a custom controller as well, The Voice of Reason.

121341-2
121343-3

I built the controller around an ATmega32u2 and three 3-8 decoders. That adds up to 24 (low driving) outputs, and 8 inputs (ATmega internal pull-ups), and 3 LED outputs with PWM. I also routed the UART and ISP interfaces out to a separate header. Then there is an extra PWM output for a forth LED (or just general GPIO). I also added series resistors to the 8 inputs for extra protection, added a fuse for the supply power, and extra protection diodes for the data pins.

All in all, it's sort of like a Frosty Flake on steroids. It should even be possible to use in a Quick Fire Rapid board. (Some of the output pins need to be removed in that case. They are shorted out to ground [for no apparent reason] on the QFR mainboard.) In addition a regular Frosty Flake should be able to control everything but the numpad section of The Sane Matrix.

Nothing has been tested this far, I just wanted to share my Christmas fun. Yeah right, I wish. Apparently I have "more important" things to do...

Offline Hzza

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #1 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 10:18:59 »
Following this with lots of interest :D.

Offline jdcarpe

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #2 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 10:26:14 »
Awesome project, sir! I love it. :thumb:
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Online suicidal_orange

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #3 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 11:34:17 »
That board has an impressive number of options and I love the sane matrix, but I'm not seeing the symmetric stagger - it looks like the standard 1/2, 1/4, 1/2 on the silkscreen with the option to make it 1/2, 1/4, 1/4.  Can you explain what you're trying to push as superior?

Looks great anyway, I hope you're allowed to build it soon :))
                               
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Offline jdcarpe

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #4 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 11:36:04 »
That board has an impressive number of options and I love the sane matrix, but I'm not seeing the symmetric stagger - it looks like the standard 1/2, 1/4, 1/2 on the silkscreen with the option to make it 1/2, 1/4, 1/4.  Can you explain what you're trying to push as superior?

Looks great anyway, I hope you're allowed to build it soon :))

See: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=19613.0
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Online suicidal_orange

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #5 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 12:03:05 »
That board has an impressive number of options and I love the sane matrix, but I'm not seeing the symmetric stagger - it looks like the standard 1/2, 1/4, 1/2 on the silkscreen with the option to make it 1/2, 1/4, 1/4.  Can you explain what you're trying to push as superior?

Looks great anyway, I hope you're allowed to build it soon :))

See: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=19613.0

Interesting, thanks!

I was thinking the other day about an ISOised HHKB layout where enter was where ANSI backslash is and backspace in the right part of ANSI enter - this layout makes that possible, along with some other interesting ideas which I can see why bpiphany thinks are superior.  Very impressive all round :)
                               
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Offline Bromono

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #6 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 12:06:34 »
oooo Can I buys one

I love the little easter eggs on the board =)
« Last Edit: Wed, 23 December 2015, 12:08:12 by Bromono »

Offline jdcarpe

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #7 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 12:11:12 »
oooo Can I buys one

I love the little easter eggs on the board =)

For real. I wanna buys one, too.

Pls toast my controller first, though.
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Offline TalkingTree

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #8 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 13:47:27 »
Amazing and very interesting.

Is there any chance to make it compatible with cherry stabilizers?
My opensource projects: GH80-3000, Skipad, TOAD (KotM Sept '17), TOAD v2 (KotM April '18), XMMX.

Offline SpAmRaY

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #9 on: Wed, 23 December 2015, 13:58:19 »
oooo Can I buys one

I love the little easter eggs on the board =)

For real. I wanna buys one, too.

Pls toast my controller first, though.

+1

@jdcarpe whatever happened to that universal full size plate?
« Last Edit: Wed, 23 December 2015, 14:02:56 by SpAmRaY »

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #10 on: Mon, 11 January 2016, 09:52:29 »
Quick teaser update. Everything seem to work good together. The controller reads the complete matrix of the main board. The Frosty Flake also reads the TKL part just fine.

123706-0

Still need to test the Voice in a QFR to see if it is compatible that way around, but I don't think that could possibly be a problem...

Also, plates! I keep forgetting that second reason I've been putting off a main board project =P Also still need to find out if the PCB (with plate) fits any case.
« Last Edit: Mon, 11 January 2016, 09:54:22 by bpiphany »

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #11 on: Tue, 12 January 2016, 04:28:03 »
The new parts, from the left: flatter electrolyte, USB diode input protection, Fuse for VCC (resettable in this case)
123886-0

Serial resistors for the eight inputs from the matrix. This should help reducing ringing, which may add some protection to the ATmega. (That is 0.5mm pitch, and those other resistors are 0402s for those who know their SMD sizes).
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Just for fun. The bare essentials to drive a ATmega32u2. The larger caps are 0603s, the smaller 0402s.
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I made the whole design with one single diode opposite to the other. Why? You tell me.. Of course I had to find and reverse it after testing =P
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The controller in its seat. USB for TKL operation connects to the 5 pin header in the top left corner.
123894-4

USB for a full size setup can be connected on the back like on Filco's or with an adapter board for different size USB connectors that are supposed to fit the CM Storm and Rosewill cases. (The image is a bit misleading, the connectors should be on the flip side of the board. This way The connector is sandwiched between the two PCBs. Mounting them like in the picture will swap USB pins around the wrong way...).
123896-5

Offline TalkingTree

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #12 on: Tue, 12 January 2016, 04:34:24 »
I like the look of it.
In regard to the plates, can't you put holes for Cherry PCB mounted stabilizers? That would make easier to design an universal plate.
My opensource projects: GH80-3000, Skipad, TOAD (KotM Sept '17), TOAD v2 (KotM April '18), XMMX.

Offline Glod

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #13 on: Thu, 21 January 2016, 02:00:51 »
Just noticed this, bpiphany you rock dude as usual. sign me up for some symetric stagger!! I have both a rosewill and qfr case. Ive been wanting to try sym stagger for a long time. Subscribing to this thread. BTW you know geekhack is LED crazy now. i know someone is going to say it. I could care less, even though I own a ton of backlit boards. It's all style no function.

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #14 on: Thu, 21 January 2016, 03:36:58 »
I like the look of it.
In regard to the plates, can't you put holes for Cherry PCB mounted stabilizers? That would make easier to design an universal plate.

Really? Don't you think it's messed up enough already? Plate mount is for real men, universal plates are for wussies.. No, I just think it's better to do it properly. Actually drilled holes for PCB mount stabilizers is right out impossible. They overlap in all sort of ways. 1mm pilot holes for drill centering when drilling the ones you need might be possible.

Just noticed this, bpiphany you rock dude as usual. sign me up for some symetric stagger!! I have both a rosewill and qfr case. Ive been wanting to try sym stagger for a long time. Subscribing to this thread. BTW you know geekhack is LED crazy now. i know someone is going to say it. I could care less, even though I own a ton of backlit boards. It's all style no function.

Yeah, well, Christmas is over. Back lighting is for lamers ;) Test fitting the board into some cases will be interesting (and still sort of requires a plate..).


To be something else than rude today, here is actual new info =)

The Voice of Reason in a QFR. With the redundant GND pins removed it just works flawlessly. I have added it to my costar_keyboard firmware, tmk support will happen soon.
125140-0

Offline TalkingTree

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #15 on: Thu, 21 January 2016, 04:20:48 »
I like the look of it.
In regard to the plates, can't you put holes for Cherry PCB mounted stabilizers? That would make easier to design an universal plate.

Really? Don't you think it's messed up enough already? Plate mount is for real men, universal plates are for wussies.. No, I just think it's better to do it properly. Actually drilled holes for PCB mount stabilizers is right out impossible. They overlap in all sort of ways. 1mm pilot holes for drill centering when drilling the ones you need might be possible.
What I think is just what I think. I don't know a thing of all the sorcery it takes to make a PCB like that. You would, of course, know better, I just share a point of view.
My opensource projects: GH80-3000, Skipad, TOAD (KotM Sept '17), TOAD v2 (KotM April '18), XMMX.

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #16 on: Thu, 21 January 2016, 05:13:31 »
I like the look of it.
In regard to the plates, can't you put holes for Cherry PCB mounted stabilizers? That would make easier to design an universal plate.

Really? Don't you think it's messed up enough already? Plate mount is for real men, universal plates are for wussies.. No, I just think it's better to do it properly. Actually drilled holes for PCB mount stabilizers is right out impossible. They overlap in all sort of ways. 1mm pilot holes for drill centering when drilling the ones you need might be possible.
What I think is just what I think. I don't know a thing of all the sorcery it takes to make a PCB like that. You would, of course, know better, I just share a point of view.

I was just trying to be witty ;) Honestly, they do overlap, much due to the mix of regular and symmetric layout option, but also just because of all the options. On top of that it's a mess just trying to keep track of all different spacebar mount versions, and which switch locations that go with which spacebar alternatives. Leaving stabilizer mounts to the plate design allows for some separation between design steps, leaving less room for error.

Offline TalkingTree

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #17 on: Thu, 21 January 2016, 06:58:21 »
I like the look of it.
In regard to the plates, can't you put holes for Cherry PCB mounted stabilizers? That would make easier to design an universal plate.

Really? Don't you think it's messed up enough already? Plate mount is for real men, universal plates are for wussies.. No, I just think it's better to do it properly. Actually drilled holes for PCB mount stabilizers is right out impossible. They overlap in all sort of ways. 1mm pilot holes for drill centering when drilling the ones you need might be possible.
What I think is just what I think. I don't know a thing of all the sorcery it takes to make a PCB like that. You would, of course, know better, I just share a point of view.

I was just trying to be witty ;) Honestly, they do overlap, much due to the mix of regular and symmetric layout option, but also just because of all the options. On top of that it's a mess just trying to keep track of all different spacebar mount versions, and which switch locations that go with which spacebar alternatives. Leaving stabilizer mounts to the plate design allows for some separation between design steps, leaving less room for error.
I see your point and I understand you can't just cram every possible option in. Since an universal PCB would be cheaper than an universal plate, I guess I'll just live with it.
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Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #18 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 01:16:03 »
Quote from: geekhack date=0
Warning: this topic has not been posted in for at least 120 days.
Unless you're sure you want to reply, please consider starting a new topic.

Well... Anyway, plates are in, switches are in, time has come =D I still need to finish up next week of course...

The raw stainless steel as it came cut from the water cutting place on the bottom. Sanded in the middle. Clear topcoat on the top.
138831-0

Same here in reversed order. The top coat of course did a trick on the camera =) Exposure between the shots is a bit different of course. I don't even know if there is such a lock on my camera. Could have done them all in one shot perhaps... I was a bit of a coward selecting the coarseness of the sand paper.
138833-1

My corner at work, if you'd always wanted to know.
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Close up on the good stuff.
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Switches assembled (they aren't all soldered yet..). And tada, it fits the case as well! (LEDs still to come, and a cord).
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This feels really good. A full size symmetric PCB was where this insanity started, and now I'm back to square one again...
« Last Edit: Sat, 04 June 2016, 01:19:26 by bpiphany »

Online suicidal_orange

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #19 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 03:10:51 »
Split spacebar and backspace on a fullsize?  Interesting choice...

Looks great, and it fits the case :D
                               
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Offline joey

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #20 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 03:43:14 »
Love it when a plan comes together! Looking forward to the capped board.

Offline TalkingTree

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #21 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 06:59:38 »
Please, a TKL version. Pretty please.
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Offline HeeCh2ei

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #22 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 10:46:11 »
Symmetric stagger is neat. Is it more ergonomic than the ortholinear board?
I would love to make something like that. Symmetric stagger, stabilizer-free board.
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Offline Glod

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #23 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 14:56:59 »
i want this really bad, i stopped buying keyboards and key caps but i will gladly buy a symmetric stagger for my collection and possible end game.

TKL or 60% would be even better..

love the split spacebar!!!

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #24 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 15:09:51 »
Symmetric stagger is neat. Is it more ergonomic than the ortholinear board?
I would love to make something like that. Symmetric stagger, stabilizer-free board.

I find it better, and more logical. Changing the stagger of the left hand to the correct direction, as well as moving the right hand all the way out for more separation, really straightens the wrists a lot. Ortholinearity still forces an awkward bend to the wrists. But all that is certainly subjective. It's of course still a compromise to constrain the layout to the standard 5x15 square layout.

Please, a TKL version. Pretty please.

RTFT ;)

Split spacebar and backspace on a fullsize?  Interesting choice...

Looks great, and it fits the case :D

Well, Since I moved from an ISO layout I never had backslash/pipe there in the first space. Adjusting to a HHKB backspace was never a problem. The more keys the merrier =) I didn't find any more recent pictures, but this is my current setup. I've been missing a Win key on the right side. So I thought I would change that this time around. I also have distant plans to learn to live with a 60% layout... Perhaps I'll add a secret key combo to turn the everything but the main section off.
138885-0

Offline Data

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #25 on: Sat, 04 June 2016, 22:32:47 »
This is amazing.

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #26 on: Tue, 07 June 2016, 11:13:41 »
Did some finishing up. Have a mystery key among the left modifiers. Plus two other keys I'm not sure what to do with =)
139178-0

Also did some tidying up of my other corner at work...
139180-1

Offline Data

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #27 on: Tue, 07 June 2016, 13:45:19 »
That small gap in the middle of the board would trigger my OCD, 100% guaranteed.

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #28 on: Tue, 07 June 2016, 16:17:04 »
That small gap in the middle of the board would trigger my OCD, 100% guaranteed.

=) The PCB can take 1.25u keys (centered stems or offset) or why not 1.25u stepped keys.

Offline geniekid

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #29 on: Tue, 07 June 2016, 16:46:51 »

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #30 on: Tue, 07 June 2016, 17:15:39 »
Good lord both PCBs are immaculate. One wouldn't need to take any second glances during those foggy moments to see what is what while soldering that's for sure!
   

Offline Data

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #31 on: Wed, 08 June 2016, 08:01:05 »
That small gap in the middle of the board would trigger my OCD, 100% guaranteed.

=) The PCB can take 1.25u keys (centered stems or offset) or why not 1.25u stepped keys.

Stepped 1.25 is a clever solution.  I doubt such a thing even exists.  :P

Offline bpiphany

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #32 on: Wed, 08 June 2016, 09:44:57 »
That small gap in the middle of the board would trigger my OCD, 100% guaranteed.

=) The PCB can take 1.25u keys (centered stems or offset) or why not 1.25u stepped keys.

Stepped 1.25 is a clever solution.  I doubt such a thing even exists.  :P


Hm, I thought there were. Signature Plastics have some in their DSC family, but I see now that the step is only 0.125u wide, if I read their specs correctly..

Offline shrubkeys

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #33 on: Thu, 23 June 2016, 23:24:22 »
I've been coveting your symmetric stagger here and @DT for a while - but might there be any plans for a 60% plate? Whether or not you like small keyboards, one of the satisfying things about a symmetric layout is, well, the symmetry...that the addition of nav keys and a numpad ruins. Actually, the spread hands and extra thumb keys lend themselves well to layer-based navigation *in particular*, making this an even better fit for a 60% board.

Anyway, just a thought.

Offline Data

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #34 on: Fri, 24 June 2016, 06:51:53 »
Don't mind me, I'm just admiring the PCBs.   :cool:

I could look at them for hours.

Offline joey

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #35 on: Fri, 24 June 2016, 06:53:49 »
I've been coveting your symmetric stagger here and @DT for a while - but might there be any plans for a 60% plate? Whether or not you like small keyboards, one of the satisfying things about a symmetric layout is, well, the symmetry...that the addition of nav keys and a numpad ruins. Actually, the spread hands and extra thumb keys lend themselves well to layer-based navigation *in particular*, making this an even better fit for a 60% board.

Anyway, just a thought.
https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=67713.0

Offline shrubkeys

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Re: The Sane Matrix and The Voice of Reason
« Reply #36 on: Fri, 24 June 2016, 12:03:08 »
I've been coveting your symmetric stagger here and @DT for a while - but might there be any plans for a 60% plate? Whether or not you like small keyboards, one of the satisfying things about a symmetric layout is, well, the symmetry...that the addition of nav keys and a numpad ruins. Actually, the spread hands and extra thumb keys lend themselves well to layer-based navigation *in particular*, making this an even better fit for a 60% board.

Anyway, just a thought.
https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=67713.0

Huh. That one gets very complicated very fast. Going to have to reread the thread a couple of times. Thanks! :)