Just in case typing full words was too much exercise for you, or perhaps learning a traditional QWERTY keyboard was too mainstream for your “rebel” lifestyle, Fast Finger Keyboards has the peripheral for you!
Not only have they completely rearranged the keys to be in consecutive A-Z format, they have included shorthand internet and texting meme short cuts on the function keys. This keyboard is for you if you knew what HOAS meant without Googling it. In case someone who has used any keyboard (or typewriter) in his or her lifetime sits down at your computer, FFK generously included the standard QWERTY layout on the keyboard.
Thankfully, the folks over at Fast Finger Keyboards didn’t make this fire-engine red atrocity novelty more than 25 bucks.
There was a time when computer keyboards were little more than bland, beige planks with nary a unique feature to be found, but that certainly isn't the case anymore. Today there are tons of higher-end keyboards to choose from, the latest of which comes from Adesso.
Adesso's newest entry into the 'not-just-another-plank' category consists of the WKB-4200UB, a wireless keyboard thanks to its 2.4GHz RF combo controller, giving the keyboard a range of 30 feet.. There's a touchpad nestled over to the side, but even so, the WKB-4200UB still boasts a full-sized QWERTY keyboard.
The touchpad isn't the only unusual feature. Adesso says you can use multiple units in the same room, a trick made possible because of 6500 IDs on 12 different channels.
Video editing is specialized enough that it demands its own peripherals. A jog wheel is arguably the most important, making it easier to zip too and fro, and locate specific points for editing. CodeAct, a Korean manufacturer that offers a series of GR labeled video editing tools, offers a solution: the GR100--a keyboard with a built-in jog wheel.
Design of the GR100 is nothing special. Layout is pretty standard, with the obligatory 105-keys, and a built-in three port USB hub. The illuminated jog wheel sits on the right, along with a set of special function keys for video editing, but these can be remapped for other duties. The GR100 integrates nicely with CodeAct’s video editing software: GReditor, GRplayer, and GRencoder.
But at $274 (¥ 24,500.00), it seems a bit on the pricey side. Bella Professional Series keyboards also offers a jog wheel, and prices from $19 to $149. And, given the right-handed preference of these jog wheel keyboards, there’s always the standalone option, such as Griffin Technology’s PowerMate. (And is easier to replace should it fail.)
Still, the GR100 does come in some pretty cool colors: snow white, metallic sliver, orange, sky blue, light green, gentle gold, deep blue, as well as black. As of now, the GR100 is only available at GeekStuff4U.
We have a tough time envisioning Mad Max wearing Nintendo's original Power Glove (even if it is "so bad"), but we could totally see Mel Gibson darting around the desert armed with SpecOps's new "wearable computer technology to provide enhanced situational awareness of the battle space for military soldiers to use in the field." Sounds as wicked as it looks, doesn't it?
"We saw that iKey had experience with the military and they had a unit similar to what we wanted," said Caroline Tucker, Executive Vice President of Sales and Business Development for SpecOps Systems. "The thing that impressed us the most about iKey was that we told them what we needed, and quickly had a conference call to discuss the details. Literally, within 24 hours, we had a prototype drawing. It was this focus on the customer that led us to go with iKey rather than any other vendor - we knew we had found a vendor who embraced our requirements."
That discussion led to the KYB-170-OEM, an ultra-compact plank measuring just 2.55 x 2.75 x 0.22 inches. There's a 17-key keypad crammed onto the sleeve that SpecOps says functions just like a cellphone does when texting. It also comes with an integrated micro Force Sensing Resistor (FSR) pointing device, which can be made with any color LED for use in the dark, a pretty important trait in a post-apocalyptic world.
No word yet on when this one will move out of the working prototype stage, but SpecOps did say it's currently testing the unit both in theater and stateside.
Straight out of Redmond's Hardware division this morning is the announcement of a new gaming keyboard, the SideWinder X4 Keyboard with "advanced anti-ghosting technology."
"We're always looking for new and novel ways to enhance people's interactions with their PCs," said Steven Bathiche, research manager of the Applied Sciences Group at Microsoft. "We know that ghosting can be a problem for gamers, so we wanted to develop a way to eliminate this issue and improve the overall gaming experience, and we've succeeded with the new anti-ghosting technology in the SideWinder X4 Keyboard."
More specifically, the new SideWinder's anti-ghosting tech allows gamers hopped up on Red Bull to furiously mash up to 26 keys simultaneously without the PC ever skipping a beat.
In addition to anti-ghosting, Microsoft's latest plank also boasts mode switching (standard mode and two gaming modes), automatic profile switching, programmable macro keys (three banks of six keys to assign up to 18 macros per profile), in-game macro recording, automatic macro repetition, backlit keys with three illumination levels, and media keys.
Like it or not, computers and peripherals are as much a fashion statement as a practical tool. More and more they need a je ne sais quoi to accompany their functionality; an aesthetic to legitimize their existence. (In other words, if they don’t look cool we don’t want them.) Such is the case with Microsoft’s newest keyboard, the Arc, which was introduced at CES.
This is not to say that the Arc is a bad keyboard. The design has a certain Bauhaus flair to it, given how Microsoft envisions it being use. According to the description, the Arc was “inspired by home accessories like flatware and lighting fixtures,” and “[i]ts unique dome keyset comfortably rests on your lap so you can kick back and work on the couch or type away on the kitchen counter.” The Arc, then, is meant for casual use that can only occur when wearing lounging pajamas, and where style is an important consideration. (In contrast to manly gaming, where solidity and menace best define peripheral design and construction.)
The Arc, which is wireless, will be available exclusively at Best Buy, starting February 21, and will set you back $59.95. There is also a companion Arc mouse, that goes for $49.95, and is available from a number of outlets.
Were only every download as fun as Network Lights. Seriously. This week's download of the week isn't going to transform your computing experience, speed up your PC, or otherwise give you any additional details about your system's operations beyond that which you already have. Sort-of.
As I've mentioned in past posts, one of the critical omissions of the Windows 7 operating system is its brazen elimination of the useful network activity icon from the lower-right corner of your screen. This tiny bit of your Windows desktop, no larger than a little icon on your taskbar, provided you a wealth of information at a glance. Immediately, you could look at the icon and see if your network connection was sending or receiving information--a useful troubleshooting tool if, in fact, no light was blinking. Hovering your mouse over the icon would deliver a complete summary of all the bits and bytes of data you've sent or received since the last reset of your PC.
That's about it.
But still, useful features given that the exact same icon sits in the Windows 7 taskbar... without any of the blinking and without any of the summary features found on its predecessor. Although Network Lights doesn't do much to assist with the latter, its ability to transform your keyboard into a working version of the network activity icon is two parts fun, one part useful.
Enermax today confirmed plans to start shipping its ultra-thin 'Acrylux' keyboard to the U.S. next month. The keyboard, which is already available in Europe, will come in both wired and wireless varieties.
Unlike other slim keyboards "that only achieve their slimness by sacrificing the wrist rest and thus typing comfort," Enermax points out that its Acrylux features a full wrist rest with a profile of only 9.2mm.
In addition to its svelte stature, the Acrylux comes built with reinforced acryl. Other features include a 2-port USB 2.0 high-speed hub, flat key caps and zero degree angle, and "SCISSORS" key switch technology, which Enermax claims offers comfortable typing for up to 10 million keystrokes.
No word yet on price, but based on the going rate in Europe, look for the Acrylux to command $65 for the wired version, and $85 for the 2.4GHz RF wireless model.
Here's one for the hypochondriac on the go - a collapsible keyboard that, in addition to folding up into a compact stick for easy carrying, it also purports to keep the germs away.
Designers Yoonsang Kim and Eunsung Park made sure to include a "None Bacterial Project" label front and center, which lets potential buyers know that their portable plank is first and foremost designed to reduce the spread of infection. But the real draw here is in how neatly and compact the plank folds up
It's a concept keyboard so you can't actually order one right now, but until the design comes to fruition, you can ogle at a handful of pics of what the plank might look like, should someone actually build it, at YankoDesign.com.
Want to have some fun with the germaphobes? Hit the jump and post a link to a pic of the filthiest keyboard you own, Hot Pocket shrapnel and all.
Now available from USB Geek is the aptly named USB Wireless Handheld Keyboard and Touchpad. The marketing gurus have pegged the device as a simple wireless input device, but this could be the perfect stocking stuffer for HTPC enthusiasts.
You won't find a multitouch interface nor is there an LCD. But it does come with a trackpad, wireless USB dongle, and a QWERTY keyboard in a form factor that will have all those hours honing your text messaging skills paying off.
It works from up to 30 feet away, and a bright backlight ensures you'll have little trouble manipulating your DVR in the dark. It also comes with a built-in rechargeable battery and supports Windows 7, Vista, XP, and 2000. And at $62, it's not going to break the bank either.
Check out a video of the remote USB Wireless Handheld Keyboard and Touchpad in action here, then hit up the product page for more info.