Herr Keyboard appears…

Das KeyboardI needed an external keyboard in the office I am borrowing in Boston, and since Norwegian-language keyboards are hard to get in the USA and I didn’t have a spare USB keyboard available in Norway, I went ahead and ordered the secondmost geeky keyboard of them all – Das Keyboard.

This keyboard is kind of old-fashioned, it looks very much like the classical IBM PS/2 101-key keyboard, with one important difference – there are no letters or numbers or anything on the keys. It is quite amazing how much this gets you to focus on the screen rather than sneaking glances down at the keys, and pressuring yourself to write automatically (it is quite amazing how easily your fingers remember where the [angle bracket] keys are, for instance.)

As for how it feels, I think I will like it. It is a classical keyboard, well engineered, and could easily be a winner but for the competition having heated up lately: Some of the new, low, modern oneshave very good key response (such the cordless Logitech keyboard/mouse combo I recently got). Das Keyboard has a certain "buckling spring" feeling to it (the snappy response that every geek loves and recalls with fond memories from early IBM keyboards, particularly (in my case) from the 3174 terminals). It is much more quiet than a true IBM keyboard, though. (And, in case you wondered, the classical IBM buckling spring keyboard, particularly AT style, is the most geeky keyboard you can get. I do a lot of telephone interviews, though, and they are too noisy for that.)

All in all, I think I will keep Das Keyboard, though there is a 30-day money back guarantee. It is geeky enough, and besides, I am a little curious as to whether it really will speed up my writing. Besides, one advantage is that very few people are likely to nick it from the office…..