Sunday, September 9, 2007

Art Lebedev Demos Assembled Optimus Maximus Keyboard

Art Lebedev, the developer of keyboards with built-in screens, has published a photo of its Optimus Maximus keyboard. The image is the first actual picture of the device as previously the company only demonstrated pre-rendered images that did not properly represented the actual device.

The photo published in an official blog of the Optimus project shows off the highly-anticipated Optimus Maximus connected to a power outlet, not a personal computer. As a result, the device cannot display any key-related information, but can only demonstrate that all of its keys do have embedded screens. The company indicated that the commercial Optimus Maximus would have tinted keycaps that look considerably better than the currently used transparent keycaps.
The image demonstrates that construction part of the development process has been almost done and that the device is on-track to be released commercially several months from now.
Optimus Maximus is a full-sized 113-keys keyboard with colour OLED screens located inside each key. The screens are 10.1mm² large and have 48x48 pixels resolution, according to its developers. Specially designed software will be able to change images on the colour screens depending on the program running.

Art Lebedev started accepting pre-orders on its Optimus keyboard on the 20th of May and it took the company 12 hours to pre-sell 200 keyboards that cost $1564 each.

The company planned to ship the first batch, or 200 pieces, of Optimus Maximus starting 31st of November. The company promised that in December, 2007 and January, 2008 it will ship another 200 and 400 units, respectively.

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