Sunday, February 24, 2008

Innovations from Artlebedev

As you might already been heard about the Optimus keyboards (Maximus and Three), there comes another one: Tactus.

The Maximus keyboard is innovative not in design (keys with 128x128px OLED displays), but in features. Not in its own features, but also in "what you can do with those" and "make your own" features.

I am a big fan of customizations. Without them, I'm just a commoner and this is a thing I don't like. Don't like to be special as an emo, also.

For the sake of making my own life a little bit easier, I belong to those n% of the people who are using Firefox instead of Internet Explorer, SonyEricsson instead of bulky plastic Nokia phones with no customizing abilities at all, Windows XP with the right updates and a self esteem just enough high to not use HI5, Tagged or any other social network sites, spam messages with "send this to 10 people" and games inside Excel files exposing the computer to risky macros and VB scripts.

So, that's why I am considering a full custom keyboard to be a must-have device.

Reading about Three and Maximus few years ago, knowing about the last one's high price (~460$ / 370€) but also with the "one key at a time" plan (keyboard is initially shipped with common keys that don't have a display, but they can be replaced one by one as your finances permits it, with OLED screen keys - Maximus FAQ), I have thought that was not the end.

So, just heard about Tactus keyboard. For now, this seems perfect.

The next ideea for an innovative device? Upravlator.

This is a touch sensitive device, but also having a tactile feedback.
It features a 10.8 inch color LCD (800 ×600 pixels resolution) with 12 see-through buttons occupying its surface. Each of them has five contact points—one in the center, top, bottom, left and right—which are freely assignable to user interface elements in the software of your choice.

An optional folding stand allows you to place the keyboard in the most ergonomic position and orientation available in your workspace.

Besides the power supply cord, Upravlator uses another two cords for connection to a computer (USB and VGA). To plug the video cable, the second monitor port (available in most configurations) or the second video card are used (the choice of the video card is up to you, it’s not part of the standard package).

Upravlator uses open standards and protocols, which will make it easier for developers to create applications. The device is compatible with Windows and Mac OS X.

Expected to be available for sale in the second half of 2008.

So, what's next for life improvement?