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A Physical Flick Bluetooth Keyboard by Google (google.co.jp)
103 points by indream on Mar 31, 2016 | hide | past | favorite | 45 comments

It's that time of the year again, isn't it.

This year, I've been telling people that it's rude not to rewind YouTube videos when you're done watching them, so that they'll load faster for the next person.

you could add another level to get more technical people by saying it's an artifact of their buffering system

I like that, but actually I've been telling them that playing a video that isn't rewound causes an exception to be thrown, and that's slow.

Much better to have two screens, one for the content and another to display any errors to the watcher. Or maybe one screen that is either broken or it's not?

I like this one. There are a number of people who'd not quite fall for it, but go on wondering if you're telling the truth or not.

When I was younger and DVDs were new I did manage to convince my aunt that they needed rewinding.

> It's that time of the year again, isn't it.

Yes, the time of year when the April 1 arms race takes yet another chunk out of March 31.

I just spit-taked my mint, thank you.

It's worth pointing out that they actually built the device and have a rough guide on how to build your own: https://github.com/google/mozc-devices/tree/master/mozc-furi...

It looks like they have the code to make it work with an arduino.

edit: edited to indicate it's real (instead of saying "may have built"). They aren't selling it, but you could build your own.

The only April Fools jokes I enjoy are absurd things that someone has actually implemented in code/hardware/etc. Anyone can write a ridiculous fake blog post about being acquired by $ARCHENEMY_COMPETITOR in 5 minutes, but it's been done before dozens of times and is just a waste of everyone's time.

You could also see this as wasted effort, but they probably had a lot of fun working on it.

Yes! I've seen a few of these, but hadn't looked at the whole list. Fantastic.

it looks like little lasercut plates sitting on some joystick modules you can get on ebay, seems technologically very feasible

The README.md actually lists all the part names and numbers. This is something that can be built.

Everyone in here is joking about this being an "April Fool Joke", but this an actual device that can be created by anyone with the tools. This hardly classifies as a joke.

Adafruit has the joystick modules for cheaper for USA customers.

> This hardly classifies as a joke.

Given that it was built for humor and amusement, and that you can view stuff like the Washington Monument like a dick joke, I disagree.

There is a keyboard similar to this, except it's even more strange. Introducing the DataHand : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DataHand

I'd consider buying one if they were still selling...

The Twiddler 3 chording keyboard seems like something you might find useful. http://twiddler.tekgear.com/

This actually looks very similar to the MessagEase keyboard (which is a real thing)


Edit: here's their video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45gR-J0Yj6M

Thanks for the reminder to stay off the internet tomorrow...

I fell for it, right up until the "Flick Sensor".

Happy April 1st, Japan.

Dammit. I was all excited. This looked really cool. I wanted one in English.

If there's a competition to how long it took to recognize the joke, I believed it up until the chocolate bar. Then again, I don't know any of these kind of syllabic languages.

Emojis are turning English into an ideographic language. Look at Kappa for example.

Come to think wouldn't the keyboard that each keys give you 3 or 4 chars with one single action (push) speed up writing process tremendously??

T9 doesnt even come close!!!

In case you don't know this is actually how smartphone keyboards work in Japan.

This used to be a thing....


I'm not sure they ever made it too far but I always wanted to get one.

I bought one, so I can attest that the hardware was real (bluetooth, left-handed model). Alas, it's lost somewhere in a pile of boxes left still-not-unpacked from my last move, and they went bust some years ago -- rumours of a new low-profile version similar to the Apple chiclet keyboard have failed to materialize as hardware so far.

The thing worked, and worked surprisingly well for single-hand typing (if, for example, you had an injury to the other paw). Trouble is, it cost more than a regular QWERTY keyboard, was slower (all those chording shift-states), and wasn't ambidextrous (left-handed and right-handed models had differing layouts, IIRC).

I remember seeing those in Popular Science and being vaguely interested.

I'm probably strange in wanting this, but I wish there was a bluetooth 3x4 T9 keypad with a small lcd that shows the content of the input box. Basically a Nokia 3310 as an input device to a smartphone. For whatever reason I found t9 input a lot nicer than swyping/tapping on a touchscreen keyboard. I didn't have to watch my fingers or pay attention at all to type like I do with touchscreen querty keyboards. I've toyed with the idea of building something like that but it would likely be too bulky without professional tooling that requires $EXPENSIVE_PRODUCION_RUN

Loved it. Regardless of the yearly madness that pervades tech circles on this date, it was cute (perchance whimsical), well conceived, and executed with a lot of polish.


I don't get it. Not even as an april fools joke.

It didn't really feel impossible, did it? With today's technology, typing over chocolate bars seems natural ;)

I'm going with the Drum Set version: https://www.google.co.jp/intl/ja/landing/drumsetkeyboard/

Last time I saw those kind of buttons in software in the Gambit REPL app for iOS. They are gimmicky but kinda useful.


I don't think the joke is the keyboard itself, not really. But I have weird fascination with mechanical computing combos.

Rather the startup, absurd change the world with chocolate, city blocks, and radical version changes video.

Disrupt keyboards.

Make sure to watch the video -- especially the part in which the team introduces a way to use half-eaten chocolate bars for keyboard input... it gets even more surreal after that.

This is amazing. Ever since I was a boy, I've wanted to type on a half-eaten chocolate bar.

I wish it was true. Tap dancing while typing. Humph..

And now I'm sad again that the DataHand is dead.

It begins...

Man, though, I would actually like to buy and use that!

I would actually use that emoji keyboard.

this would be 1e6 better with e-ink keys

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