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LCD display keyboard

Transparent keys with a screen underneath
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I remember seeing someone's computer who used it for editing videos, and the keyboard had "editing symbols" on it's keys. I'm guessing it had some sort of rubber overlay covering a normal keyboard or something of that nature. But, that being the case, you'd have to switch overlays and the rubber would no doubt end up collecting all sorts of grime and crap overtime, not to mention that the areas where the keys go up and down would be ripped up from the pressing of the keys, or the labels would be rubbed off.

That's where this product comes in. Picture a normal keyboard-but with transparent keys, and clear plastic "surrounding" the keys on top, sans the letters on the keys-but all the keys in the same place and arrangement to avoid confusion on "special" keys (shift, spacebar etc). The reason for elimanating the letters? Well, there's a screen underneath which can be seen through the keys AND the "extra space" on top (between the arrow keys and the #pad, where there are no actual keys-just plastic). At the top, above the "normal" keys, there could be some extra keys (similar to the volume buttons that a lot of keyboards have these days)

I don't think the resolution would need to be that great-just good enough that you can actually see the letters :) The keyboard should, by default, when plugged into a computer that doesn't have the special software installed, behave like a normal keyboard and just display everything in it's usual, non-customized areas, so that you will have a functional keyboard to work with until you've installed the driver to alter the screen underneath. The CD that comes with the keyboard should have software for PC, Mac and Linux, so that you can use it reguardless.

The software would allow you to make up to 10 "presets" which are switched by a row of dedicated buttons at the very top, which are skinnier than the others so that they won't be mistaken for the regular number keys. Each preset would have different keys set *by the user* to do different things, with a corresponding icon underneath that key, and if you so choose, you could have a colored background or even a "keyboard theme" (i.e. strips of film and cameras for video editing, guns for shooting games, a cloudy sky for a plane game, etc-much like a cell phone wallpaper). The software comes with the aforementioned 10 common setups, and the user can make more of his own with the software and store them on the hard drive of the computer.

The software that comes with it includes several different "wallpapers" to set in the background, but if you so choose you can use your own. You can have the app scale the picture to fit or you can do it yourself if the app can't do it well enough in your situation.

Although it does come with software, the hardware specs necessary for writing code for this thing will be readily available so that anyone can sell/share software designed for this keyboard.

There is also a utility on the CD that allows you to put an abbreviated driver for this keyboard onto a jump-drive (not included with the keyboard) . Abbreviated how, you may ask? All it has is 1 or more of your personalized setups for the keyboard (like video editing or playing *insert game here* for instance) and additional code for whatever OS you are planning on using the keyboard with. That way, you can put your photo shop or video editing presets onto a jump-drive, bring the keyboard and jump- drive to a friends house or to work/school, plug in the jump-drive and launch the little program in there and voila! You've got all your settings and key-mapping set up ready to use right there. It runs directly from the jump-drive and does not require you to put anything on the computer, just to ensure that you won't get a tongue-lashing for installing software without permission

Obviously something like this will be way more expensive than a regular keyboard so I wouldn't reccommend one of these if you have drinks near the computer often :)

Dickcheney6, Feb 24 2009

Optimus Maximus keyboard http://en.wikipedia...us_Maximus_keyboard
[xaviergisz, Feb 24 2009]

[link]






       The opposite is very baked (i.e. touch screen used as keyboard) and works pretty well for this purpose, so long as the interface is well designed. People complain about lack of tactile response but they use laptop keyboards (which have almost none) without complaining.
Spacecoyote, Feb 25 2009
  

       [+] the <link> shows an incredibly expensive keyboard that uses individual LCD elements: yours sounds cheaper and you get all that extra space.
FlyingToaster, Feb 25 2009
  

       Pretty baked with the Optimus Maximus keyboard, and the Gamer accessories that let you configure an interface on a touchscreen.
loonquawl, Feb 25 2009
  

       Instead of releasing custom made software and locking it down, especially to a few Operating systems and few options, Give away the protocol and other such specifications. People can write drivers themselves. And If I am a power user, i dont wnat to be limited to the options you give me. i want to create my own interesting applications of the technology in the hardware.   

       Also check out the design of OLPC2. What the OLPC2 lacks is the tactile feedback. But its great for occasional use.
kamathln, Feb 27 2009
  

       "Instead of releasing custom made software and locking it down, especially to a few Operating systems and few options, Give away the protocol and other such specifications"   

       Just because it comes with a CD doesn't automatically guarantee that it's "locked down". Since you made this comment I will edit this idea however.
Dickcheney6, Feb 22 2010
  

       Baked using one large screen: Art. Lebedev Optimus Popularis; Elgato Stream Deck.
notexactly, Dec 18 2018
  
      
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