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New Keyboard - cellophane
the story of an invisible girl
New Keyboard
I got a fancy schmancy new keyboard today at CompUSA. The only purpose of this post is, really, to try it out. It has a bunch of buttons at the top, and a scroll wheel in the middle of my spacebar!

(I'm still deciding if I like that part or not -- it's awesome in theory, but so far it's getting a little bit in the way. I'm a left-thumbed-spacer, and while there is room on the left side my thumb seems to prefer to space where the scroll is.)

But the wheel has a blue LED light, which is pretty cool. And there's a pretty blue light at the top of the keyboard as well. Nifty!

I need to install the drivers to get all of these extra buttons working. Then I'll have a clearer idea of how fun it is. But right now I'm trying out the very most important part of all -- the typing. So far, except for the left-spacebar issue, everything feel like it's in the expected spots. I haven't made any weird typos. The keys are pretty comfortable to type on.

Not bad, for $15. I only got it because (1) my keyboard was very dirty (darn cats), and I didn't feel like tediously taking it apart and cleaning it, and (2) it's got the cool wheel and extra buttons, and most importantly (3) it was cheap.

When in the course of human events.... wait, I don't know that one. Um, the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy red dog. Yeah, that's one! I think I have the colors backward. But I am pretty sure the words are right. Or at least close, hopefully all the letters are in there.

Oh wait, I found a discrepancy. The \ key is below the enter, where half of the shift belongs. The enter key is taking up the space I normally expect to find the \ in. Why would anybody put the \ down there? I'm used to using that part of the shift button when I select text.

Well, two minuses so far. The left-space and the shift\ issue. Well, I'll keep it for a couple of days, at least, and decide if the changes are annoying enough to make the nice blue lights and the extra buttons no longer worthshile.

It sure is nice to have a clean keyboard though, I'll tell ya that!
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fredcritter From: fredcritter Date: February 5th, 2005 10:49 am (UTC) (Link)

Me, I've spoiled myself with those contoured ergo keyboards with the left- and right-hand sets of keys facing in slightly different directions. I find them so much more comfortable than a "normal" keyboard. Fortunately I've got one both at home and at work, 'cause I now tend to make a bazillion mistakes if I'm forced to use a standard keyboard. Now if only the machine at work didn't have that stupid "Windows" key; and, while we're at it, it'd be nice if it had the Ctrl and Alt keys in the correct locations instead of reversed…

renniekins From: renniekins Date: February 7th, 2005 03:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
I was looking at one of those, but wasn't sure if I'd like it or not. especially since it'd be just for home, not work, that could confuse my hands!
encorecrazay From: encorecrazay Date: February 5th, 2005 12:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
You should try using a french keyboard, several of the letters are swtiched from the qwerty layout, a few additional for things like ç and é and even one that combines the CRTL&ALT as one key. I almost bought one to bring back, but since I travel with very limited baggage (one carryon), decided not to.
nishar From: nishar Date: February 5th, 2005 01:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
At least you didn't ruin a keyboard trying to wash it with a power washer... like I did a while back. D'oh!!!
Seriously... I don't think anybody likes cleaning a keyboard.
thatguychuck From: thatguychuck Date: February 5th, 2005 02:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Some inexpensive, cheaply made keyboards can be cleaned by simply (and literally) putting it through the dishwasher, light or no soap. The cheap keyboards are better because they don't have chips or odd electronics to get messed up with the water.

I've done this and it worked great. Ok, I've only done it once, but I've done it. The key (pun intended) is to let everything dry very well. I set mine in front of a heat vent for a day or three.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: February 7th, 2005 03:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wow -- this I have to try! I still have my old dirty keyboard... but I'd better make certain I'm keeping the new one before I experiment. *grin*
netmouse From: netmouse Date: February 5th, 2005 02:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
At work the other day I asked the network/tech guy for a lighter touch keyboard and he let me select between a few of them. the one I decided to try out was a Kensington ergonomic one. It's not split up or anything, but the keys are not square and their organization is a little bit angled toward center.

Part of the reason I wanted to change was because I was making lots of typos on the standard old keyboard he'd started me with - being used to the laptop, I hadn't used a full standard keyboard much in a long time. Dave stopped by shortly after I started on the kensington and asked how i was going, figuring I'd have a period of adaptation, but I used it nearly flawlessly from the start. It was pretty neat. :)
renniekins From: renniekins Date: February 7th, 2005 03:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think I saw one of those in the store - it's shaped like a normal keyboard, but the keys are basically parralellograms instead of squares? I tried typing on it in the store, but it felt awkward. My fingers kept aiming for the wrong key. I think I'd prefer a split keyboard to one of those, personally.
netmouse From: netmouse Date: February 8th, 2005 03:13 am (UTC) (Link)
Parallelograms, yes. I think it's easier for me than a split keyboard, since I don't really touch type (I cross over at random)
matt_arnold From: matt_arnold Date: February 5th, 2005 03:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
You should take a photo of your new keyboard and post it!

Knowing what the internet is like, you'll probably have 100,000,000 hits a year from now and still going strong, and have purchased a server to show your keyboard photo and tell stories about it, which of course are typed on it, and you can take paypal donations for repair whenever a key comes loose, and get rich.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: February 7th, 2005 03:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ya think so? Hmmm....that's certainly worth a try!
_goodintentions From: _goodintentions Date: February 5th, 2005 03:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
I thought it was just:

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.

see it uses all the letters- you wouldn't need 'red' in there because r is used in brown, e is used in jumped, and d is used in dog.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: February 7th, 2005 03:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
hey, maybe you're right! It's been a long time since I've tried any of those exercises.
homeless_one From: homeless_one Date: February 5th, 2005 09:17 pm (UTC) (Link)

The Course of Human Events

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

words by Thomas Jefferson, 1776
music by The Fifth Dimension, 1968

(several additional paragraphs omitted for brevity)
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