Hacked Gadgets Forum

August 13, 2006

DIY Wafer-thin keyboard

at 7:10 am. Filed under Computer Hacks

Need a space saving keyboard? Make your own!

“After taking an ancient “Microsoft Internet Keyboard” apart, turns out it’s a rather simple mod to convert it to a wafer-thin, touch sensitive, transparent beast. Little bit of duck tape, and it’s perfect :).

How it works:
There are 3 plastic layers. Two, on top and bottom, have the contacts that touch each other to form a keypress. The middle one has holes where the keys were, so if you leave the keyboard flat, the contacts are a quarter of a millimeter away from each other, held there by the middle layer. However, press any spot, and the contacts touch, the equivalent of a keypress.”


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11 Responses to “DIY Wafer-thin keyboard”

  1. web design uk Says:

    Thats great! I’m going to give it a try. Thanks

  2. John Says:

    I’ve done this ages ago. It’s not fun – i tried to type – you can’t really …. the large keys become little spots [or two] like the spacebar – and that’s totally useless.

    Then the controller is still on a PCB – and it’s not hard to break that in no time [cable pulled out ///torn mylar sheets] etc.

    Definitely not Ergonomic either – harder to type/confirm keypresses – … but that’s basically how the innards of NEWER keyboards look. Older ones have older “plastic nodule” which connects two isolated “fingers” together – and the backpane is a whole PCB … or even older than that were the individual switch types.

  3. Al Says:

    Yeah, I just tried it. Pretty much tore the sheet from the PCB without even trying. Looks cool, but thats about the extent of it. Didn’t even get it hooked up to a computer before I wrecked it.

  4. John Says:

    well – if it’s not “torn” … certain PCB’s need the retaining bar taken off and the sheet realigned and screwed back in – others which are “stickied” on or something like that would be purely destroyed, unless … someone has a way to reliably reconnect them ….

  5. d Says:

    u are so stupid
    this SUCKS!

  6. scripty Says:

    Hey, dumbass!
    Normally you ITALICIZE quoted text, and post one, maybe two scaled down, pictures, and always provide a link in the form of [link] at the end of the page to the real site of the project.
    And off course not only did you rip off this kids project and post it to a shitty social news site, you ripped off the LAMEST “hack” ever!

    You suck!

  7. johnnyv Says:

    This would be better if you painted over the inividual key elements with an high solids epoxy coating. Then over coat the whole key board with a hard wearing polyurethane.That will leave slight surface bumps for the keys and the hard epoxy will distribute the finger press over it area meaning the key can be larger than the contact and work fine. The problem is that most plastics are hard to stick too with epoxy and polyurethane, a spray on contact adhesive could resolve this.

  8. Alan Parekh Says:

    Hi Scripty,

    I want my quoted text not to be misinterpreted, therefore I use real quotes 🙂 There is a link to the creators site, I don’t think it’s hard to find. If you don’t like the project, no one is forcing you to look at it. I thought it was interesting, and that is why it is here. Not sure what social networking site you think sucks but I didn’t post it anywhere other than here…

  9. JIC transparent keyboard… | zedomax.com - tech blog for emerging technologies... Says:

    […] via hackedgadgets Consumer, digg, diy, Hack […]

  10. Goop2 Says:

    Wow! Thats amazing! Even though thats how ANY keyboard works as far as I know, and it makes it extremely hard to type acuratly, but still, well done with this ingenius discovery! If you REALY wanna make it thin, get rid of the top layer so just touching the bottons makes it type random letters! 😀

  11. Linuxchic.net - Because I Can » Blog Archive » DIY Wafer-thin keyboard Says:

    […] After taking an ancient Microsoft Internet Keyboard apart, turns out its a rather simple mod to convert it to a wafer-thin, touch sensitive, transparent beast. The basics and a link to a Flikr site with more info. How sweet is this?!?! More (offsite link)… […]

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