My Hackathon project is not about programming but about something… tangible.
In case you prefer video it’s here:
Same but text:
The first bit of introduction.
11 years ago Apple reinvented the phone. This became a turning point for the whole world.
In 2016 Apple reinvented the keyboard. They decided that F keys are not so important as smiley faces. But for a lot of developers around the world, this was a showstopper. MacBooks pro 2016 and 2017 had 16GB of RAM, like the 2015 model, and developers did not ask to buy them. They even did not want to change their old MacBooks Pro 2015. it wasn’t worth it
In 2018, maximum RAM was increased. But we still weren’t used to the TouchBar. We wanted to use function keys.
I think those of you who use Apple hardware watched the recent presentation. And I’m sure some of you were looking forward to a new 16-inch MacBook with functional keys. There were rumors about this model
But they didn’t present one.
Can we fix that?
My hackathon project took 30 hours of development, and a lot of old stuff such as keyboards. Modeling, handwork, soldering, sawing, 3D printing and gluing.
The first idea was to make a flexible keyboard that can be put on top of the Touchbar. Blue print on the photo. But as it turned out, the Touchbar has a very low resolution for touching, which is why this concept didn’t work or was very unstable.
The second idea was to upgrade an old laptop keyboard. And it definitely worked out better. It is based on a metal plate and works quite well, but not perfectly. In sum I want to introduce you to 2 completely different concepts.
PushBar mini: this is a sticker for the Touchbar, which you can leave inside the laptop when you close the lid. This really helps find the right button when you look at the screen while coding. It weighs only 2 grams.
The second option is PushBar Pro. It is actually a keyboard, but with thirteen buttons. So you just stick it into the USB port near the TouchBar… and it works.
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I’m a systems engineer in JetBrains company. Uptime Lab founder. I’m glad to see you on my website! I hope you find my content useful. Please subscribe to my Instagram and Twitter. I post the newest updates there.