It’s almost New Year’s!

2014.12.29-corveil-sketch

Just a late night sketch of Corveil before heading to bed. Around 1.5 – 2 hours.

My cool chiclet keyboard I acquired earlier this year died on me yesterday. :( It was my favorite keyboard I’ve ever owned: Look at how lovely.

(This became rather long, as I am oddly fond and particular about pc keyboards.)

I first became envious of those slim chiclet keyboards the first time I used them in the Mac cluster at college. Ohh, so pretty! Ohh, how nice it is to press these buttons! They had pretty much just been mainstreamed by Apple then, so it was the first time I used or saw one. The aluminum was so elegant and sleek, and it was a joy to type on. I never owned one – I couldn’t justify the price tag they have for a non-mechanical, otherwise no-frills keyboard – but boy, I sure loved them for years. I secondly never wanted to actually buy one because the Mac layout would be an annoyance to have to reconfigure the keys for the Windows-specific ones. That and, I am not a fan of the light color scheme of the keyboard, and it wouldn’t match my desk or desktop.

But then I found this I-Rocks keyboard on Amazon one day! I had been looking for a new keyboard because I was growing annoyed how noisy the mechanical one I’d been using for a few years was. Cherry MX Blues, yes. Lovely to type on, potential nuisance to listen to. If I was a typist or a writer, I don’t think I’d ever want another keyboard (since those mechanical ones are solidly built, pretty much meant to last your lifetime). But the noise was really starting to drive me crazy when using Photoshop. And that is because of …

The Alt key. Photoshop’s eyedropper tool shortcut. It’s something that I am tapping constantly while painting. Which is normally not remarkable, but it becomes so when your keyboard is built with Cherry MX Blues. Every time I hit that dang alt key, CLICK CLICK CLICK. And the Cherry MX Blues are a high-pitched click, which makes them all the more obtrusive. I didn’t mind it when I first bought the keyboard, but oddly enough, the more I used the keyboard, the more distracting it became. It actually broke my concentration during painting.

So then my mechanical keyboard died (micro usb port broke, think the solder came loose and broke the circuit) (that’s what I get for ordering a budget-priced item!) (Yes, it was a Rosewill, the Newegg brand keyboard that’s infamous for that shoddy micro usb port). I fortunately had a Newegg gift card, and ordered a Poseiden one with MX Browns, but disliked it and sent it back (felt oddly similar to standard non-mechanical keyboards, and also felt cheap quality-use). Then I tried the I-Rocks one, and it was perfect! Exactly like the Apple keyboard, but with a Windows-layout key setup, AND a dark color scheme! The aluminum was brushed black, how lovely! And it was surprisingly inexpensive! So I bought it and it’s been perfect for months, until yesterday.

And now I am typing on my incredibly old Dell keyboard, which I am not even sure how many years old it is. At least a decade. And here’s the travesty … I am enjoying typing on this keyboard! It feels so satisfying to press actual buttons instead of the chiclet pads. Which, I guess, is why I’m writing such a long entry!

It might seem odd to have written so much about a pc peripheral, but I swear it is all the fault of the mechanical keyboard craze! I first became fascinated with mechanical keyboards a few years ago through various PC forums and websites/blog posts (they’ve been gaining in popularity), and found it strangely enjoyable to learn more about how they were built, and what caused some people to become almost fanatical about their praises for them.

I guess because I am using a computer so often, and the keyboard is the computer’s interface, there’s something very homey about pc keyboards to me. A comfortable keyboard can make the entire time spent at the computer a lot more enjoyable, and a poor one, a lot more unpleasant. And since they’re among the cheaper PC peripherals (excluding mechanical ones) you don’t need to spend a lot to try a few different keyboards, and find the one you like best – this Dell keyboard would probably be $10 if bought at a store (asides from being standard size, there are no frills about it) (I sure wouldn’t say no to some media keys), but it is so pleasant to type on.

And quiet. Yes. Photoshop was a delight to work with because of the lack of noise (the I-Rocks one, as much as I loved it, some of the often-pressed keys were beginning to squeak due to how much I used the keyboard (kind of funny, hehe).

Oh, and lastly. I also really like how this keyboard, as it remarkably old, uses a PS/2 connection, instead of a usb connection which most keyboards today use. This is a good thing, as I am currently all out of spare usb ports on my motherboard. No free usb ports, the horror!

I have another delightfully sappy Modern Talking video I want to upload (will this phase never end?!), I’ll save that for tomorrow!

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