In this issue...
The Cleankeys Keyboard from Cleankeys Inc. is Now Available!
The Cleankeys Keyboard from Cleankeys Inc. is a wipable, waterproof keyboard designed for environments in which hygienic conditions are a necessity, such as medical and dental operatories. The tap-sensitive keyboard has a glass or acrylic top surface that is easily cleaned using disinfectants; key strokes are activated by tapping the key wells on the top surface (key-tapping has adjustable sensitivity), as there are no mechanical parts in the keyboard at all. This wireless keyboard also includes an integrated circular track pad, eliminating the need for an external mouse, and an optional USB cable (if wired in desired).
For more information on the The Cleankeys Keyboard , see the Laptop Products category in our online catalog.
Ergonomic Workstation Tip of the Month
The Advantages of Programmable Keypads
Have you ever tried a new keyboard and found that certain keys you usually type with are not in the same location they were on your previous keyboard? Are you left-handed and find that you are forced to use a numeric keypad designed for right-handed users? Or perhaps you find that when you go to type a combination of keys to perform a particular function your hands and fingers get twisted and turned into near impossible configurations? Well, it doesn't need to be that way, if you have a programmable keypad.
Programmable keypads are advantageous to many users for a number of reasons. Here are a few situations in which you may find a programmable keypad the best solution available.
1. You need to reduce the amount of keystrokes or mouse actions performed while using software applications. One common source of finger or hand injury while using a computer input device is repetitive action. This is especially true when those repetitive actions require combination keystrokes, such as ctrl + alt + ?-keystroke, etc. A programmable keypad can greatly reduce the stresses on the fingers or hand from these repetitive actions by 'bundling' them into one keystroke, thereby reducing the overall amount of work needed to accomplish the same result. Of all the benefits of a programmable keypad, this one may be the most universally desired and benefical. A related usage for some users is the desirability of having an efficient way of entering characters from different languages that use a different script than the universal latin alphabet. To produce these characters often requires the use of Unicode characters or some combination of keystrokes to generate them. With the new XK-24 programmable keypad from PI Engineering, which supports Unicode characters, typing in another script is now greatly simplified for non-Latin-based character sets.
2. You need your keys programmed for the left or right hand only. Traditional numeric keypads were built into the keyboard itself on the right-hand side, because most users are right-handed. With the introduction of left-handed keyboards, the numeric keypad was simply placed on the left-hand side, either in a mirrored or non-mirrored version of the right-handed keyboard. For left-handed users, there simply were not as many options as for right-handed users, or the options that were available for them had limitations or were not ideal for all left-handed users. But with programmable keypads, like the X-keys keypads from PI Engineering, left-handed users can program their separate keypad in any way they wish: if they want a mirrored version of the right-handed numeric keypad, they simply have to program the keys to mirror the right-handed version. Programmability gives the left-handed user the versatility to configure their work devices in the way that best suits their own working habits and orientation.
3. You need keys programmed differently for different applications. Many working environments require workers to use several different kinds of software applications throughout the work day, and many of these programs have very specific or repetitive keystrokes or mouse actions connected with them. These tasks can be simplified for each application with a programmable keypad that can accommodate multiple layers of programming. For example, if you are working in one application that requires frequent combination keystrokes, you can program those into one key on a layer that is used only for that application (which is linked automatically with it, as is the case with the new XK-24 Programmable Keypad from PI Engineering - this month's new product launch). When you then move to your other application which requires a set of different combination keystrokes or mouse actions, you can program these on a different layer. Layered keys on programmable keypads thus have the potential to make cumbersome applications with complicated procedures much more manageable.
4. You need your keypad layout to work in either landscape or portrait orientation. Let's say that for the kind of application you primarily use at work a keypad with a 6 key by 4 key grid is best used in landscape orientation, where there are 4 rows of 6 keys. Not only can you use this keypad in landscape orientation simply by rotating it from the standard portrait orientation, but with some programmable keypads, like the new XK-24 Programmable Keypad from PI Engineering, you can even remove the keycaps, rotate them 90 degrees and re-install them in that orientation to make the keypad a truly landscape-oriented keypad. This feature of the programmable keypad is especially applicable for those who would use the keypad as their primary input device, and so would like a keypad that most resembles the layout orientation of a normal keyboard. With the new XK-24 keypad, there are even detachable 'feet' on the underside of the keypad that allow you to angle or tent the keypad left or right, or upwards and downwards (Note: upwards or downwards could be unergonomic, depending on the circumstances. Without the feet added, the keypad has no profile and is flat; there is greater risk of wrist extension when the feet are added for upward profile in landscape orientation, less so in portrait orientation).
Featured New Products
X-keys XK-24 Programmable Keypad from PI Engineering is now available!
The new XK-24 with MacroWorks 3 software combines the tradition of rugged, reliable X-keys with added features. The smaller footprint still has four more keys than previous models and sports a new co-injected case suitable for handheld applications.
The XK-24 looks equally at home on the desktop in portrait or landscape orientation. Detachable feet improve the viewing angle of your key legends.
Clear key lenses keep your printed or hand written legends securely in place and protect them from wear while making it quick and easy to update them. A new feature offers glowing red or green backlighting with adjustable intensity.
MacroWorks 3 (MW3) Software provides simple, intuitive programming for launching applications, opening files or accessing directories. Inserting special characters and symbols as Unicode text strings adds another new unique feature previously not available in X-keys products.
For more information on the XK-24 Programmable Keypad, see the LCD Arms - Other category in our online catalog.
Featured Promo of the Month
The GoogolPad and GoogolPad EZ from DSI
The GoogolPad and GoogolPad EZ are large key numeric keypads which feature sculpted rounded keycaps and a more familiar layout. These keypads are native USB.
The Googolpad uses large, easy-to-read brightly colored keys with white legends to create a fun, creative, educational environment for any child. The brightly colored 3/4" keys (1" key pitch) distinguish between numbers, letters, and symbols for easy typing and learning.
The GoogolPad EZ uses large easy to read black legends on white 3/4" keycaps, and will unobtrusively blend into any modern office.
The mechanical keyswitches respond easily to gentle finger pressure, making typing easy and more comfortable, while still providing positive tactile feedback. The oversized keys make either version of this product ideal for individual with visual impairments or difficulty in targeting keys on regular keypads. This keypad functions on both PC and Mac (OS 10.3 or higher).
Promo Price for GoogolPad: $50.00
Regular Price: $60.00
See the The GoogolPad and GoogolPad EZ in the Numeric Keypad category of our online catalog.
Our Prices Have Changed Again!
We have again updated our prices (effective May 1st, 2010) on ErgoCanada.com to better reflect the recent gains the Canadian dollar has made over the American dollar. Our policy has always been to bring the best products available worldwide to all Canadians at fair and affordable prices.
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