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  Superglue green keyboardFeb 15, 2011 6:55 AM PST | url
Added 2 new A* pages:I was delayed slightly in getting these pages done today because I broke my keyboard! I've had this thing for about ten years now I think, so somehow dropping it and breaking off the right mouse button (it's got mouse buttons around a central touchpad) made me sad ;_;, buuuut so far a little disassembly and a little superglue seem to have done the trick. Whew! Although in taking it apart and removing the touchpad button housing for the first time ever, I realized that I could just swap in the same housing part from my other keyboard of this type that I *think* I still have in storage somewhere (got that one about thirteen years ago, I think, and it still works except that a drinking water spill a decade or so ago rendered the ESC key inoperable ;_;). And then I realized that I don't use the button right next to the one that broke off (it's for "middle button"), and could remap that one to the right mouse button function if I needed to—so between that and the older keyboard, I could bust off two more mouse buttons and still be right as rain! Although hopefully it won't come to that for another few decades.
If you're wondering why all this bother when I could go get a modern keyboard, well, I think it's safe to say they don't make them quite like this anymore. I present you with the wonder of ergonomics that is the Acer "Future" keyboard (the name did not prove to be prescient, as the "Future" was quickly discontinued; in fact this second one was a refurbished one the Seattle-area Acer distributor somehow happened to still have in their warehouse after the model had already been cut):
So yeah it does look like what you're thinking it looks like. And that hole in the center with the rim of buttons around it is the touchpad! (The right-most of the two buttons below it (past the down-arrow button, I mean) was the one I busted off.) The numeric keypad is detachable, thankfully. So basically I just rest the main unit of this thing on my lap and type and twiddle on the touchpad and don't need a mouse (or a desk, for that matter). Pretty sweet. So if I continue to be clumsy and put my remaining keyboard and a half out of commission, my computing lifestyle is probably hosed. :o Must be careful!
The other (not so) cool feature of the "Future" (man I probably could have drawn this thing in the comic somewhere and you guys would have been like "WHOA look at the crazy keyboards they have in the future at the center of the galaxy," right? =pp) is that it connects by PS/2 AND serial ports; I managed to get a new computer with a serial port a few years back, but...they don't still make those now, do they? Anyway I just suspect that will be a problem. Fortunately my current computer runs Photoshop (4) just great, and the Internet, so heck I'll never need to upgrade to a new one ever, right? Right?? I WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU FUTURE KEYBOARD!!!
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