Google Japan is having some fun this weekend with the announcement of the Gboard Bar, a physical keyboard that has all of its keys in a row. Google Japan states that there are a number of benefits to the new keyboard, the main one being that it allows users to find the key they are looking for faster than ever before.
Like any good product, it all starts with inspiration. For Google Japan, this inspiration came from the fact that for years, many focused only on the word “key” in the word “keyboard” and did not go further. In Japanese, the word keyboard translates to キー ボ ー (kii-bou-do), so with キー (kii (key)) getting a lot of attention, I decided to focus on the ボー (bou) part, which translates on its own To the bow (crew/bar). Using this, he was able to invent a new design, improving navigation when compared to a traditional keyboard by placing all the keys in a straight line. According to the company, this reduces the need to look in all directions like a traditional keyboard. You can just start from the beginning and go through each key until you find what you’re looking for.
It also states that there are health and safety benefits associated with the new keyboard, allowing the arms and legs to extend naturally when typing. The device even has additional features, such as becoming a physical extension of your extremities, making it easier to press buttons that might otherwise be out of reach. You can also use it on hiking trips as a trekking pole or ruler to measure things, and it’s easy to clean, only requires one long wipe. For now, Google only has plans for the standard layout but is considering an emoji version and also a gaming model with LEDs.
If it isn’t clear now, this is somewhat of a joke, and Google Japan has no plans to mass-produce this and make it available for sale. But, she has a file GitHub page Set up where all necessary data files are loaded so that you can create your own if you choose. While this might sound like a fun project, be warned that this thing is going to be tall, as it measures 1,650mm or about 5 feet 5 inches. If that’s too much, Google reminds us that there is also a perfectly good Gboard app that can be downloaded on iOS and Android devices, and that offers a nice selection of Features that can improve your writing experience in new ways.