This is a very specific kind of Blank Screen post: it’s ostensibly about one product that, statistically speaking, you are unlikely to have and, also statistically speaking, you are unlikely to ever get. I’m really selling this to you, aren’t I? Okay, try this: it’s to do with keyboards, which we all spend a lot of time with and which you, admit it, have strong opinions about.
Okay, it’s just me. But I’ve been pulling 16-hour days at the keyboard lately, the feel of these things is hugely important and the potential risk to my wrists is gigantically important to me. Then Apple’s gone and brought out a new keyboard, a new type of keyboard and, seriously, when Apple does something, the rest of the industry mocks it while working furiously to copy it.
(Are you on a notebook computer now? See the way the keyboard is toward the back and you’ve got palmrests at the front around a trackpad? That was Apple’s idea and there is now notebook you can buy that does not do exactly this.)
So a new design of keyboard is likely to appear in other machines, from Apple and others, now that it’s out there. And Apple made such a fuss of it at the launch that I was suspicious: the company doth protest too much and all that. Then people started getting the new MacBook that has this keyboard and they hated it.
Well, some hated, most people thought they would put up with it. The travel is shallow, the distance you have to press the keys before they register is tiny. The keys are also wider but it’s chiefly the travel and how that feels that is making people unhappy.
I went in to an Apple Store specifically to try out the keyboard and I actually liked it.
But that was a few minutes. Now here’s a fella who’s spent eight weeks typing on it:
Apple’s new MacBook uses a new keyboard mechanism. The keys are larger and the throw [aka travel] is less, and so when people try it out for just a minute ot two in the Apple store, it may feel strange, different and even undesirable.
I’ve spent eight weeks with my new MacBook now, and one of things I like about it the most is the keyboard. Just like the single USB-C port, past experience doesn’t prepare or guide one for using this keyboard because it’s so different from what Apple has delivered in the past.
Read the full piece for a more informed view than I can give you. But then take away that if this keyboard does come to all computers, it’s fine.