Keyboard configuration


There are many Kickstarter projects that have hit their goal only to flounder during that insane period after they get the money. This is for a variety of reasons, but perhaps the most common is that a project fails to anticipate the monumental effort required to take a product from the prototype to the production line. The wooden "heirloom grade" keyboard, called, could have so easily been one of those failures. It was two years late, but during the course of those many extra months, its creators – Jesse and Kaia – wrote a wonderful series of blog posts on dealing with the minutia of small-scale manufacturing and its horrendous complexity, from the USA to Chinese New Year in Shenzhen. All this time later, the keyboard is a reality, and Bruce Byfield wrote a wonderful and in depth look at the hardware in issue 211 (June 2018) of this very magazine.

At the heart of is an open source philosophy that not only touches the hardware and design, but also the software. Its Arduino-based firmware is open source and so too is Chrysalis, a new desktop application used to configure the keys. Chrysalis is not just limited to hardware. Chrysalis can be used with any Kaleidoscope-powered keyboard, which has become an open standard for general Arduino powered keyboards, including the Model 01, the ErgoDox EZ (and any other keyboard wired like the original ErgoDox), the Atreus, and Dygma's Raise (preliminary, at the moment). This means you can buy one of these or build your own, and you don't have to worry about the firmware or the configuration. The software saves you from editing Arduino source files and works in real time with your keyboard. Adjust the keys for each layer, and adjust the shortcuts that work across keys and layers to create the ultimate configuration for your work.

Project Website

If your keyboard runs an open source firmware, chances are you can run Chrysalis to change its colors and behavior.

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