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Thread: Optimus Maximus Keyboard

  1. #1
    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Nov 2007
    Dublin, Texas, U.S.A.
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    Optimus Maximus Keyboard

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Re: Optimus Maximus Keyboard

    You can get some visual here: and this guy got the keyboard to talk to the software. Here's a quick write-up of the one I've been using...

    Unless you remember using something like the original Microsoft Natural Keyboard, the 21" size of this will make you wonder how large a keyboard can get. If you've used the older keyboards like this you'll value how much desk space the 14 ~ 17" keyboards of today give you.

    The tops of the keys are slick and slightly domed and the "F" and "J" keys have the traditional home row bar so you can find your place w/out looking. The keyboard has the old fashion clickly-click sound of the IBM XT keyboard (or the more current Das Keyboard,) based on the mechanics from Cherry electronics - I love the sound, but other people can tell when I am typing and some can tell the rhythm of my typing enough know when I am entering text vs. ‘editing’ from the sounds.

    Keycaps are large, smooth and the slight dome of the keys really makes the LCD and OLEDs sparkly in ‘indoor’ light, but they have a down side too – the size of the keys left me with finger strain after a few hours of typing email, word processing and the ilk. Most of the keyboards I’ve used over the last two decades or so all are slightly dipped so your finger rests in the keycap, but with this keyboard, the smooth tops make it a little challenging to know when the edge of the keycaps are near. And while the keys look amazing when the overhead lights are low, or off, my office has a Western view and I sit facing North so the light that comes across the keyboard in the afternoon and early evening washes out the view.

    Typing can on it can give you some interesting sensations as the keycaps change when you press shift and if you track anything in your peripheral vision you’ll see things change as you type. I’m sure all of this can be something you’ll get used to over time, much like changing laptops and having to learn where they keys got moved to, but after a couple weeks or so I haven’t gotten used to it (my normal keyboard curve is about four days).

    The keyboard requires a wall power unit, and standard USB A/B cable to connect to the PC. If you are a cable prude this shouldn’t be too bad, they tried to make it look good. The SD slot on the back of the unit doesn’t seem to offer anything other than a place to save layouts - at least I transfer images with. In Windows the keyboard doesn’t do a good job at attempting to mask the makers of the components used within. The maker of the memory card reader is visible not only in device manager, but in Explorer as well. The keyboard, being self powered (vs. bus powered,) seems to work decently as a high speed USB hub. This doesn’t really surprise me – the other product, Mini Three, also does a horrible job and fit and finish when it comes to keeping the components internal.

    The video shows how the software should work, but I can't get it to work on any of the systems I've tired... Maybe when it matures a bit more -- currently the software is at:

    Mac OS v.6
    Windows v.0.0.12
    -- M.

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