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Interact Software

Soft Key Caps

Monday 22 August, 2005, 11:37 AM

This claims to be a keyboard where every single key cap contains a miniature display - a 32x32 pixel colour screen. Actually I'm pretty sure it's either vapourware or a hoax - the FAQ says that it "will most likely use the OLED technology." In other words they don't seem to have decided how the in-key displays are going to work, which seems incompatible with their claim that it is "in the initial stage of production". Unless that's in the same sense that the hundreds of little projects I've thought of doing but have never got around to are all "in the initial stage of production." But let's pretend it's real for a moment.

The thing that I found most entertaining about their mock-up screens was that in the only shots where you could see all the keys, the function keys were still labelled "F1" F2" etc... This suggests that they've thought through the implications of the design about as far as they appear to have thought through the implementation.

It's also disappointing that they hadn't mocked up any examples where graphics span multiple keys - I rather like the idea that the keyboard could be an extension of the screen, rather than lots of individual isolated screens. I want to be able to run a 'keyboard saver' for when I'm away from the computer. And there may even be useful applications of having the UI extend into the keyboard - who knows?

On the offchance that it is actually real I'll definitely get one - it's both cool and pointless - what's not to like? But I'm not holding my breath...

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