Apple is in the news this week after launching its idea for a new Fusion keyboard, possibly eliminating the need for a track pad in the future. We couldn’t quite imagine a world without the “click”, it's something were so used to, it almost defines how it feels to work on a computer. Currently just a patent for the MacBook, the idea is to combine both touch-based input and mechanical typing, ultimately providing the user with more flexibility of use.
This super-keyboard, which apparently needs no touchpad to keep its purpose, actually sports “touch sensitive keys” that take on their very own function. The keys will be able to control an on-screen cursor, zoom, and scroll. Additionally, some keys feature a two-stage mechanical structure, meaning they can be depressed to a second level (the first level, of course, commanding it to type) to produce a command-such as a mouse click. Yes, this means the entire keyboard could be made “clickable”. If you're wondering whether the keyboard gets confused as to what it's sensing, Business Insider reports the following:
“If it doesn't log a keystroke shortly after sensing a touch command, it assumes that the user intends to use the touch-sensitive portion of the key. If it does log a keystroke within a pre-determined period, it ignores the touch-sensitive portion and lets the user type normally”.
A keyboard design such as this wouldn't be compatible on just any Apple keyboard. In fact, Apple's MacBook is currently destined for a new butterfly-mechanism keyboard. However, despite the patent first being filed in 2011 and we're still waiting, the Fusion keyboard could very well be seen in Pro machines, such as the MacBook Pro, “where greater key travel still has a lot of value for the target market”, says Tech Crunch.
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