Keyboard Builders' Digest
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Keyboard Builders' Digest / Editorial

Behind the Scenes of Issue 92

The dreadful Mirage, quick news, manufacturer coupons, new vendors, missed & new meetups.

Published August 26, 2022

Hey y'all,


Welcome back for another edition of Keyboard Builders' Digest (this time Issue #92), a weekly roundup of this DIY keyboard focused newsletter and blog from Tamas Dovenyi – that's me. If you are new to this, you can read how this started out and what this is all about nowadays. If you like what you see, you can subscribe to the newsletter (free) and donate some bucks to keep this otherwise free and ad-free project alive.


Quick news & links:


I knew something was going on when – after months of plateauing – visitor stats kept breaking records on consecutive days.

Checking the stats gave me a thrilling feel: Zack Freedman's MiRage was the most visited page. And I thought: "No, not that one again!"

A few weeks ago Zack tweeted this:

Witnessing the backlash, I had to check my original post and it turned out I wrote "the video is full of bullshit".

Yeah, that may sound pretty rude, but I can remember exactly how this happened. Not an excuse but I was in hurry and I put up this post in the last minute before sending out the newsletter. And in such situations I may overreact statements without much context like: "ortholinear is superior to staggered".

Regardless, Zack's fanboys and fangals kept spreading love for a whole day back then, so I was cautious when, this week again, realtime stats showed that dozens of visitors are hanging out on that page. I mean, it was MiRage 2 this time.

And only when I put up sporewoh's beyblock20 felt I a little more calm realizing it's a harmless visitor surge this time: Chris referenced my page, naming Mirage as his inspiration for the I2C approach and linking in an r/mk post which ended up with 8.7k upvotes. Phew! :D

Manufacturer coupons.. kind of

This is a new page where I try to collect some manufacturers offering you discounts, free prototypes, etc.

Similar to the vendor or coupon database, but I don't want to mix manus with shops.

Unfortunately, as I see, manufacturers are not really prepared for the kind of general discounts we are accustomed to with keyboard shops and the KBDNEWS discount code. Instead, they often offer links, some coupons for signing up, and discounts are often not the automatic and straightforward ones but you have to apply for the discount or contact a customer agent who sets up the coupon manually.

This week ALLPCB offered you a $5 coupon code when registering via this link – "the coupon will be added to the account within 48hours". Well, not the most straightforward way either, but if you'd like to try out ALLPCB's service, feel free to use this link. I may receive some bucks too, but that's not entirely clear to me yet.

Please get back to me with your experiences if you sign up or order something via the link above so we can monitor how this works.

And I'm also awaiting your tips on which other manufacturers I should ask for discounts.

Btw, just like with other manufacturers, I'll try to refine this process with ALLPCB, and they are already working on the classic webshop-style discount engine to be able to use the familiar KBDNEWS coupon code.

Vendor database

This was one of those weeks when I just kept stumbling upon new shops or ones missing from the vendor database:

New discounts:

  • Mellow Caps's Nick offered you a 10% discount.
  • Nomkeys's Denney offered you a 5% discount.

New shops added Vortex Keyboard, TaikoHub Keyboards, Frostii Cables, GEONWORKS, Nomkeys, Takoyakeys.

Missed & new meetups

Come on people! The Toronto, Taiwan and Minnesota meetups went by without being featured in the meetup database.

I can't believe there wasn't a single person among my 70,000+ unique visitors who attended one of these events or at least heard of them.

Help me please and let's make a comprehensive meetup collection together.

Some recent additions to the meetup database:

  • Meetup Bremen added.
  • And some entries updated with galleries and videos.

Again, I can't keep an eye on all the Discord channels where most of the smaller meetups are discussed and organized.

Check the meetup database for all the upcoming (and archive) events.


New donor: Jens Woyke. Thanks!

New regular supporter: Jacob Mikesell. Thanks a lot!

Thank you guys and gals!

Monthly donation goal

After reading my complaints in Issue #90, some of you suggested I should publish my donation goal.

Well, I'll try to display a regularly updated progress bar later but for now: my income from donations this month is at 52% of my actual goal – which is half of my real goal because I felt the gap between the real goal and reality is so huge. :D

So in reality it's at 26% of my longtime monthly goal which is about the minimum wage in this part of the world.

For the past two years I've spent more time with this side-gig than with my fulltime job. :D slowly reaching the goal would justify this craziness, and it would also allow me to officially prioritize over my job.


That's all for today. Thanks for reading.

Feel free to comment in this issue's r/mk thread, and as always: keep learning and building.

Cheers, Tamás

Published on Fri 26th Aug 2022. Featured in KBD #92.

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