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The Ultimate Keyboard

Engadget reviewed perhaps the craziest keyboard ever created. A keyboard the likes of which have never been seen before. The keyboard of keyboards, the Optimus Maximus. Featured here as well, this bad boy features a built in display in every key, a couple USB ports, an SD card and a very clean look. The key displays are of course programmable and feature a frame rate of 10fps.

I was chatting with a friend about this keyboard and we began thinking. If you're going to produce a $1,500 keyboard with over 100 displays, why stop there? Why not go all out and produce the ultimate keyboard.

The keyboard already implements several important features:

  1. Programmable keys with built in displays that can display static pictures or play video.
  2. Very slick looking design.
  3. Good I/O options.

But we can do better.

1.) First of all, this keyboard can break. I forsee military use in the future for this and if that is to happen it needs to be rugged. It should be drop proof, water proof, sand proof, step on with large combat boots proof, essentially indestructible. While we are it make it bulletproof.

2.) Secondly, I like it's I/O support but why is it wired? Wireless USB is fast becoming available and should be implemented. This would eliminate all cables except the power cable, and I don't see any reason why that couldn't be eliminated as well. Using solar panels the device could power itself. I'm not that fond of solar cells in my rugged device, so why not absorb heat from the environment and convert that energy into power.

3.) Did I mention this wireless keyboard should be light? Less than 2lb, please.

4.) While visual feedback in a keyboard (sans those antiquated and miniscule LEDs) is unheard of and absolutely amazing, it leaves the other senses wanting. Audible feedback, programmable of course, ought to be implemented. This could be anything from the clickety clack of a modern keyboard, old time typewriter or dying cat symphony.

5.) And if you're going to have visual and audible feedback, you ought to have tactile feedback. And I'm not talking about vibrating keyboards. I'm talking about per key feedback, if not to mimic those cool old skool IBM keyboards.

6.) Lastly, have you ever mashed your keyboard while leaning over your laptop and typed a bunch of crap on your screen? Or done something awful from dropping your keyboard? I have. Every keyboard should have a motion sensor which disables the keys on the keyboard while it's in motion. Now you can just move your keyboard by just grabbing it when you're lying on the couch.

This, I think, pretty much wraps up all you could want in a perfect keyboard.

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