Keyboard Builders' Digest
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Keyboard Builders' Digest / Editorial

Behind the scenes #152

Keyboard projects, quick news, in the mailbox, meetups, new vendors and discount codes!

dovenyi
Published January 26, 2024
Creators! Feel free to tip me off about your keyboard related projects to bring them to 100K readers.

Hey, what's up everyone!

Hm. I thought waking up at 3AM has some benefits, e.g. that Issue #152 will be ready by the time I usually open my eyes. Well, no, and I'm still late as always. ;)

Welcome back for another weekly recap and behind-the-scenes write-up.

If you are new to kbd.news, you can read how this started out and what this is all about nowadays. If you like what you see, subscribe to the newsletter (free) and donate some bucks to keep this otherwise free and ad-free project alive.

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Posts I thought are worth sharing:

Pic: Lynxware CAT

Lynxware CAT

  • The Lynxware CAT is a set of split input devices built with mouse switches, open sourced by Ape_Devil of Lynxware.
  • DreaM117er shared his MagWave44, a Dactyl Skeleton derivative ergo split with magnetic tenting.

Pic: MagWave44

MagWave44

Pic: Rasti64

Rasti64

  • Penk Chen's Rasti64 is a 64-key, low-profile board sporting the author's custom keycap set.
  • Salim Benbouziyane shared the files of his Ocreeb MK2, a modular macropad system exploring the idea of a custom magnetic connector that lets you attach all sorts of external modules.

Pic: Ocreeb MK2

Ocreeb MK2

Pic:

  • Andrea Varotto shared the files of his Cornepad, a unibody keyboard with a numpad in the center.
  • Sally is a 3D printed split keyboard with a staggered Alice-like layout – designed by keeb_carving.

Pic: Sally

Sally

Pic: Manifold

Manifold

  • The manifold is a handwired keyboard in a 3D printed IBM SSK-like case. Designed by _galile0.
  • Joe Scotto made a streamdeck: the ScottoDeck is handwired and diodeless.
  • Takashi shared the Gerbers of his Snowflake macropad (already mentioned last week but without further info).
  • Brostafarian open sourced the keycap that plays Doom.

Pic: Altair case

Altair case

  • Altair and Altair-X by ai03. Pretty common split layouts in a much less common alu case, gasket mounting and plate/foam stack – at least in the split scene.
  • New black coated CFX 1U caps from Chosfox. Expect custom laser legends. Smoother surface than normal black CFX caps:

Pic:

  • New low-pro keycaps by Tai-Hao? The profile looks cylindrical like MCC but with MX stem. At least mounted on MX caps in all the photos I've seen, but the caption says "MX/Choc":

Pic:

Pic:

Pic: Lunch Money

Lunch Money

Pic: WIP by ADreamOfStorms

WIP by ADreamOfStorms

It turns out that the perception of smoothness is affected by sound as well.

Keyboard art

Siupermann combined techniques of the Japanese Washi art with keyboards (source):

Pic:

A Chiffre+ posted by Monkeycrunk. Satin finish case made of raw brass:

Pic:

NotFormSam's Trigon with its modular wrist rest is an interesting concept: "personalize with color chips and middle name badges".

Pic:

Bloodwood endgrain Choc by con_work:

Pic:

Collection

Mwhhaahhaaaahaaaa!! [maniacal laughter] It's been a while since I bought anything vintage, but this doesn't mean I haven't kept my eyes open. There had been simply no good opportunities until the long wait paid off this week, as I stumbled upon quite a rarity. Even better, there were only a couple of watchers and no other bidders. I could hear my heart pumping as the last seconds of the bid ticked away.

Now I'm the happy owner of a… drum roll… Data General One, one of the first laptops.

Pic: Data General One (photo by Austin Calhoon)

Data General One (photo by Austin Calhoon)

The best thing? Even if you ignore the madmen who sell these for $6,000 on ebay, I managed to buy mine for a fraction of the cheapest offers you can see there. (Pro tip: As always, look for small local marketplaces!)

I will be even happier if it arrives in one piece. Photos and post later.

Donations

  • No new donors this time.
  • But I have awesome regular supporters! Thank you guys and gals! As always, I'm grateful to everyone who helped this project thus far.

For all the donation options check out the donation page!

In the mailbox

I got the Luminkey80 in "e-retro white". Fully built with 9009 caps. Gorgeous! I can't wait to eviscerate it! :D Yep, and to put it next to some of my vintage models to see how well they match – for some photos and just for fun.

Pic: Luminkey80

Luminkey80

Other than that, I invested in some photo gear, accessories, e.g. my first proper flash, a wireless one. However, I have yet to explore how it works to make use of it. :D

Yep, and a beautiful deskmat by SageCrowDesign. Slightly smaller and less thick compared to the previous ones, but beautiful imo:

Pic: Ghost Fish deskmat by SageCrowDesign

Ghost Fish deskmat by SageCrowDesign

Meetup database

Some upcoming and recently added events in the meetup database:

Upcoming meetups (2):

As always, this meetup database is both a calendar and an archive so feel free to send me upcoming events or even ones from the recent past to make this collection as comprehensive as possible.

Vendors & Discounts

New shops and updates to the database of keyboard vendors this week:

  • Aiheystudio added. Three ladies from China doing keycaps sets and artisans. Lin was kind enought to offer you a 15% discount with the KBDNEWS coupon code.
  • Lynxware (Germany) added.
  • Peter of 900mats.com offered you a 10% discount (KBDNEWS).
  • I just realized that the Divinikey coupon doesn't work, probably since they've migrated to a new system back in November last year. I was told "discount codes have been disabled until further notice".
  • The coupon is recreated by 3Dkeycaps's Loic (10% off of cool 3D ergo caps). Thanks!

Developments

  • So I sourced a set of tiles for self hosting the map, but I'm not content with the colors. They are very distracting. Maps served only illustration purposes on the blog, and the old black and white ones (turned into a paid service) were much less obtrusive and better in this sense. I'm not sure if I'm ready to test converting or color adjusting some hundreds of thousands of .pngs.

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That's all for today. Thanks for checking by. As always: Keep learning and building!

Until next time,
Tamás

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Published on Fri 26th Jan 2024. Featured in KBD #152.


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