Monthly Archives: April 2005

Keyboards and other devices…

I spend a lot of time in front of a computer. This is for two reasons a) I get paid to do things on a computer and b) computers are fun. O.k. b) isn’t always true but a) always is. Recently I also used a telephone but I suspect that even that will get sucked into a computer fairly soon.

Anyway I’ve spent some years doing this and then I had an epiphany (which is less painful than it sounds) and realised that I generally used cheap rubbish devices to work on all day and given that I was spending up to ten hours a day in front of the dread machine maybe I should try something different. So I bought a flatscreen monitor, a trackball and a funky aluminum keyboard. The flatscreen montior is great but the other two I can’t help feeling emphasise form over function.

Keyboards are however remarkable standard – even when you walk into an electronics store most of them are exactly the same – with only minor variations on layout or some special buttons. Useful links:-

  • A big innovation is the Microsoft Natural Keyboard (Microsoft Website) and the various variations on the theme.
  • On a more hard core note there is the happy hacking keyboard: Linux Emporium
  • Also there are these things PC Keyboard who make the classic solid click IBM type keyboards. I’m old enough to remember those, I still like the sound and the feel is quite nice though it does annoy people a bit after a while – anyway at least from these people you can get a control key in place of the caps lock key….

The value of writing things down…

This is at the moment a rather random comment. On a home page I have at a University I currently work at I’ve got a short list of some software hints and tips I put together to help me get stuff working. This blog is an extension of that idea – the idea being that if everyone else can find it so can I – it saves hunting around on paper.

On the other hand it does reveal my general ineptitude at getting things done but most of you probably knew that anyway. Let’s just hope it doesn’t come up in a job interview where I’ve claimed to be really good at installing software.