Project: Keyboards
Tools: 3D printers, Soldering irons


Computer alphanumeric keyboards typically have 80 to 110 durable switches, generally one for each key. The choice of switch technology affects key response (the positive feedback that a key has been pressed) and pre-travel (the distance needed to push the key to enter a character reliably). Virtual keyboards on touch screens have no physical switches and provide audio and haptic feedback instead. Some newer keyboard models use hybrids of various technologies to achieve greater cost savings or better ergonomics.

The modern keyboard also includes a control processor and indicator lights to provide feedback to the user (and to the central processor) about what state the keyboard is in. Plug and play technology means that its 'out of the box' layout can be notified to the system, making the keyboard immediately ready to use without need for further configuration unless the user so desires.