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Hardware Hacking Input Devices Build

USB NeXT Keyboard With an Arduino Micro 115

coop0030 writes "Ladyada and pt had an old NeXT keyboard with a strong desire to get it running on a modern computer. These keyboards are durable, super clicky, and very satisfying to use! However, they are very old designs, specifically made for NeXT hardware: pre PS/2 and definitely pre-USB. That means you can't just plug the keyboard into a PS/2 port (even though it looks similar). There is no existing adapters for sale, and no code out there for getting these working, so we spent a few days and with a little research we got it working perfectly using an Arduino Micro as the go between."
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USB NeXT Keyboard With an Arduino Micro

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  • by rnturn ( 11092 ) on Saturday December 08, 2012 @07:07PM (#42228753)

    ... that I may, someday, be able to find a use for that old 3-button DEC hockey puck mouse I have down in the basement. Cool.

  • by DarkVader ( 121278 ) on Saturday December 08, 2012 @08:48PM (#42229453)


    I've got a NeXT ADB keyboard, and a Griffin iMate. Works just fine.

    This thing doesn't look like it's ADB, though.

  • Re:waste (Score:5, Interesting)

    by locopuyo ( 1433631 ) on Saturday December 08, 2012 @09:04PM (#42229561) Homepage
    If you expand your search of keyboards beyond Wal-Mart you can find plenty of modern keyboards that don't suck. There are hundreds of models of mechanical keyboards to choose from. The most popular mechanical switch brand is Cherry MX. I prefer Cherry MX red switches and have a Corsair K90 keyboard that has a lot of modern features such as back-lit keys, media keys, and a volume scroll wheel, and 26 key rollover. Cherry MX red switches only require 45 g of force so they require a lot less effort to press and I can type faster and with less errors because I don't miss keys.
  • Re:waste (Score:4, Interesting)

    by nukenerd ( 172703 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @06:07AM (#42232225)

    If you like cheap keyboards just fine, then by all means, do that. Some prefer the older ones, and that's ok too.

    I tend to live at my PC and over the years it just became so tedious keeping a good keyboard clean and working well. Now I just get whatever is cheapest

    A quality keyboard (quality anything IMHO) can be dismantled with real screws, cleaned and re-assembled and ends up like new. I use a 20 year old IBM AT keyboard that I clean about once every 2-3 years (I don't eat over it either). It is superb to use and worth the hour spent. Most modern keyboards are utter rubbish, and I have thrown quite a few away (like you get with new PCs) after trying a few keystrokes. What a waste of resources. It is like the difference between riding a quality bike and a riding cheap Chinese-made commuter hack, no matter how new and clean that hack is. If you are happy with the hack then I am happy for you.

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