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Old 10-30-2010, 05:11 AM   #1
RCR
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Keyboard enhancement for oldies like me.

I bought a new laptop awhile back. Mostly, I was happy with it, except for the keyboard. Using it in gloomy hotel rooms and coffee shops, the keyboard was almost impossible to decipher.

The keyboard used thin grey-white characters, small, and cluttered with blue symbols for stuff I never use. The key surfaces were shiny, making the characters even harder to see.

I browsed the internet for keyboard stickers. They do exist, mainly for vision impaired folk. I ordered a bunch of different types and tried them out. The result was larger letters, but they were glossy and they curled and peeled. So I got some flat transparent lacquer from a hobby shop and applied a couple of coats. Worked beautifully.

The photo shows the result. The top two rows of keys are unchanged. They actually show up pretty well in this brightly lit photo but not so well in real life. The other keys show the stickers applied. (I've also labelled where the USB slots are in the sides of the machine so I don't have to search for them).

Now I'm a happy camper. Anyone else do something like this?

Oh, and why don't manufacturers make their keyboards easy to read like this right from the start?
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Last edited by RCR; 10-30-2010 at 05:14 AM. Reason: afterthought
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Old 10-30-2010, 08:52 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCR View Post
I bought a new laptop awhile back. Mostly, I was happy with it, except for the keyboard. Using it in gloomy hotel rooms and coffee shops, the keyboard was almost impossible to decipher.
You should consider getting a laptop with an illuminated keyboard. Many manufacturers make them.
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Old 10-30-2010, 09:13 AM   #3
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wow! there's a lot of real estate being used by your number pad! I just have the numbers across the top of my keyboard and am glad for it!
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Old 10-30-2010, 09:34 AM   #4
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I was so eager to get my beloved little Acer Aspire netbook with the extended battery that I ordered it from Canada before it was available here in the U.S.

It is STILL my beloved little netbook, even as we speak, but the French-Canadian keyboard layout took a bit of getting used to! There are not huge differences, but a couple of key keys (pun intended!) were resized in order to make it work, one of which is the left shift key. Also, the "return" key is one more space to the right than I was used to, so instead of a page return I often get this: \

(Please ignore the general dirtiness of my keyboard -- this baby has been used hard!)
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Old 10-30-2010, 02:37 PM   #5
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Having been in the IT business since before there were keyboards (except on the teletype card punching machine) and monitors, I have always lived by the adage "Put your money on the bits where you interface with the machine!"

In today's world, that means keyboards, mouses (mice?) and monitors. Now it's moving towards touch screens and gestures, but the premise remains.
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