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Art Lebedev plans new Optimus keyboard

updated 04:00 pm EDT, Tue May 20, 2008

Optimus Popularis Keyboard

Art Lebedev Studio's namesake founder today provided first details of Optimus Popularis, a new model in the company's lineup of display keyboards. Presented only as a mockup so far, the Popularis is billed as a smaller alternative to the Maximus that will shrink the design by moving the programmable keys to the top and shrinking the overall size of the keys themselves.

Costs will be shaved primarily by switching away from OLED; Lebedev doesn't explain what will replace the standard but promises a "totally different principle" behind the keyboard, suggesting a more advanced or unique approach to giving each key a display that can be reprogrammed on the fly for different apps and operating systems.

The keyboard is still too early in its design phase to be given a release date but is already projected to have a price below $1,000; the current Maximus keyboard sells for approximately $462 and thus hints that the Popularis may have more advanced features than its ancestor.

by MacNN Staff



  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    And it will be released before the end of the next decade!

  1. jpellino

    Joined: Dec 1969


    do you get a free copy...

    ...of Duke Nukem Forever?

  1. Loren

    Joined: Dec 1969


    tap dancing into my heart

    Come on, Lebedev. Stop handwaving, get yourself some decent VC, make it in China, get this thing out on store shelves at no more than 199.00...

    REAL ARTISTS SHIP, said someone we worship.

  1. Titanium Man

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Why do we need a full keyboard with OLED keycaps anyway? At most, we need maybe 16 keys. Make it the size of a numeric keypad instead. It'd be cheaper and still provide more than enough functions since functions can change. Look at Belkin's Nostromo gamer keypads. No changing labels, but they've got something like over 40 available functions for each application.

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