Monday, 10 August 2009

Key Product Placement

I was reading the other day about a desginer's interesting concept for a computer keyboard:

Each key has a brand name that begins with the appropriate letter. It's a fun idea, and I'd be tempted to get one, if they ever become available to buy. Or maybe they could get enough sponsorship from all of the companies to make the keyboard free.

We don't have set desks at work, and I recently started sitting at one which had a lousy keyboard. Sometimes keys wouldn't work at all, and other times I'd get two of whatever I typed. This was a major issue when it came to entering passwords, so I asked our IT people for a new keyboard. They offered me the choice of an HP keyboard, or a more ergonomic "Microsoft" one. I picked the HP one, partly because the other one was a bit dusty, but mainly because I couldn't bring myself to voluntarily use something with "Microsoft" printed on it. Most of our desks have the MickeySoft keyboards, and they're pretty good. Of course, they're not actually made by Mr Gates' company anyway.

Unfortunately, due to an unfortunate combination of the lighting conditions at that desk and the angle of the keys on the HP keyboard, I can't read any of the letters and numbers on the keys. Because I touch type, this is not much of a problem, except that I now realise that I look down at the keys when I enter passwords and numbers. I must learn how to touch type numbers. The glare is so bad that I might as well have one of those Japanese "Happy Hacker" keyboards:

Years ago someone told me about people physically pulling out keys from their keyboard and swapping them with others. The idea was to stop anyone else using their desk when they were away. I've never seen this in the office, but I do have a colleague who uses a keyboard that's a bit like this one:

Presumably the idea is that your wrists don't get as strained as they do with the more normal flat design. I've always wondered whether a piano keyboard could be used for a computer. The standard one has 88 keys, which should be enough to be going on with.

I wonder what kind of music something like this blog post would make?


for a different kind of girl said...

Based on how nasty my laptop keyboard can become (despite my reputation as a clean and tidy girl)(sometimes I eat a bagel while updating Facebook, so, I suppose I'll blame it on my need to let people know I'm eating a bagel), I quite imagine I could hide a body in the crevice of that broken up, ergonomic keyboard. As for typing on it, I think that would be next to impossible.

Bee said...

I work with 3 different keyboards depending on my mood. ;o) I have a wireless one I use for when my hands hurt.

I want to replace the one I have at with some sort of shocking device. When I hit a key, it will buzz the bats in the pants! Make it happen will you Brian?

Brian o vretanos said...


Maybe my colleague stashes cakes in his - I'll have to check that out sometime when he's not looking...


I'll sort you out with a bat frying keyboard, only I'm rather busy trying to find one with a coffee dispensing key.

Jean Knee said...

at the airport so no sound bit I'm sure it's lovely
I have a ergonomic mouse pad which sucks. in case u you were wondering

Brian o vretanos said...

Jean Knee:

I'm not sure that anyone would describe atonal music as "lovely".