by Anton Shilov
08/14/2010 | 11:58 AM
Microsoft Corp.'s applied sciences group has developed a keyboard that is based on a large touch-screen. The device may adapt itself to a variety of programs and potentially allows to greatly simplify the input. One of the main drawbacks of the concept is the lack of tactile feedback.
Microsoft Adaptive Keyboard is a research prototype developed by Microsoft Hardware to explore how combining display and input capabilities in a keyboard can allow users to be more productive. The keyboard incorporates a large, touch-sensitive display strip at the top. In addition, the display continues underneath the keys, allowing the legends to be modified in real time. This lets users do things like change the character set to a different language or display command icons.
The Adaptive Keyboard is a research prototype, not a product. It is only available to participants in the UIST Student Innovation Contest, who are supposed to demonstrate usage models for the device.
Art Lebedev design studio from Russia released a keyboard that features an OLED screen inside each key. The product did not turn out popular due to its massive price. At present the Optimus Maximus keyboard costs $2400.