Blog Archive

Click on a headline to read the teaser.

Jailhouse Gateron Greens
A review of Jailhouse modded Gateron Green switches, using JSpacers from TheVanKeyboards. Read More ›

Kinesis Reloaded: Day 3 › Modification Log - Kinesis Contoured Model 110
In the final part of this series, all the pre-assembly work has been completed. All the various parts of the Kinesis have been overhauled and modernized. The last step is to assemble it! Read More ›

Kinesis Reloaded: Day 2 › Modification Log - Kinesis Contoured Model 110
After a year of making small plans and acquiring parts (namely a Stapelberg controller), I was ready to start modifications to the Kinesis. Last Sunday was Day 1 of a multi-part project. These modifications will completely rebuild the Kinesis from the ground up. When I'm done, the only thing that will remain from the original board is the case. Read More ›

Gruber on HomePod
John Gruber reviews HomePod in fewer than 140 characters. Read More ›

Kinesis Reloaded: Day 1 › Modification Log - Kinesis Contoured Model 110
After a year of making small plans and acquiring parts (namely a Stapleberg controller), I was ready to start modifications to the Kinesis. Last Sunday was Day 1 of a multi-part project. These modifications will completely rebuild the Kinesis from the ground up. When I'm done, the only thing that will remain from the original board is the case. Read More ›

HomePod, From an Audiophile's Perspective
A Reddit member's take on HomePod in an early preview. Read More ›

First Look: MT3 Profile Keycap Set
This is a first look at the new /dev/tty keycaps from Massdrop. Inspired by vintage terminal keyboards MT3 profile is high profile, sculpted, and designed from scratch using modern day tools. Read More ›

Stickerbomb DZ60 Typing
Typing video of my Stickerbomb DZ60 keyboard. This board has a mostly muted sound, with a distinct clack. Read More ›

Stickerbomb DZ60 HHKB Build Log
I loved the look of the stickerbombed case, but not the layout. I'm firmly a 60% guy, I simply didn't have interest in a TKL layout board. I knew that to make one for myself, and to have the HHKB layout I love, I'd have to endeavor to build my first truly custom keyboard case. Read More ›

Stickerbomb DZ60 HHKB Build Video
Iris Keyboard Typing
Typing video of my Iris brown alps keyboard. This keyboard has a very 'thock' sound with light ping from some outer edge keys. Read More ›

iCloud Drive + Backblaze
Using iCloud Drive with zero-knowledge client-side encryption, and Backblaze for unlimited encrypted cloud backup. Read More ›

The Stapleberg Controller
The Stapleberg controller is a QMK-compatible drop-in replacement control electronics for Kinesis Advantage keyboards. Read More ›

Unboxing the BIG SERIES Switch › Four times larger = four times the fun!
Unboxing the big series switch. From, the BIG SWITCH is fully functional, and four times larger than a normal mechanical switch Read More ›

iPhone X
iPhone was the beginning of a revolution. iPhone X is its realization. Every iPhone Apple makes is always the best iPhone ever made. Every iPhone I buy (and I've owned quite a few) is always the best iPhone I've ever owned. iPhone X though, is something special. The experience of using iPhone X is fundamentally different than every one that preceded it; it breaks all the rules on how an iPhone should work, and is very much the better for it. Read More ›

Christmas Tree PCB › A 6-key macropad that doubles as an ornament.
This 6-key macropad from features a simple design in the shape of a Christmas tree. Running QMK, it's a fully functional macropad and really great light-up ornament. Read More ›

Christmas Tree Macro Pad Video Build Log
This 6-key macropad from features a simple design in the shape of a Christmas tree. Running QMK, it's a fully functional macropad and really great light-up ornament. Read More ›

Universal iOS and Mac Apps
Mark Gurman of Bloomberg reporting Apple will allow developers to ship universal iPhone and Mac apps in 2018. Read More ›

Brown Alps Iris Video
First video on the new MVT YouTube channel. This build log shows the assembly of an Iris Split Ergonomic keyboard. Featuring an ortholinear layout, split halves, brown Alps switches and vintage OnePerDesk keycaps. Read More ›

Brown Alps Iris Build Log
Iris is a split ortholinear keyboard based on Lets Split and Nyquist. From, Iris is a bold 60% layout split keyboard, providing the same punch and functionality as ErgoDox, in a much smaller package. This build log details my white Iris with Brown Alps Switches. Read More ›

Apple OS / MacOS 2020 redesign
Germain to my post the other day imagining a world with a unified OS between iPhone and Mac, Aurelein Saloman has mocked up what that experience might look like. Read More ›

The Unified Platform
Qualcomm has announced Windows PCs with ARM processors. In an era where ARM processors can compete with Intel processors, what if Apple made an ARM Mac? Read More ›

We've Moved!
I picked up a set of AirPods about three weeks ago, and have been in love with them. They are one of the most Apple-y products I’ve ever used. Read More ›

RedScarf II Ver.D Build Log › 60% + Numpad with Gatistotle Switches
For a long time I really wanted a 60% keyboard with integrated numpad, but I didn't want a board that included Fkeys (like the RS96) as I rarely use them. Then one day along came the RedScarf II+ Ver.D Read More ›

All Screen
Gruber’s Apple Watch Series 3 Review
iPhone X Keynote Hot Take And Rundown
Apple presented its 10th annual iPhone keynote today. The keynote was the first ever presentation made from Apple's new campus, in the Steve Jobs Theater. What follows are my hot takes and first thoughts about the keynote and what Apple announced today. Read More ›

AZIO Retro Keyboard › Modification Log
For my girlfriend's birthday this year, I bought and modified a keyboard for her. One that fit the aesthetic she liked, and with the mechanical switches she prefers. Read More ›

Personal Computers › In the age of mobile, what is a personal computer?
I’ve been thinking about the term ‘personal computer’ lately, and I think I’ve come to a realization about what a personal computer can be, and (more specifically) what it means to me. Read More ›

Macrumors Goes Hands On With iPhone 8
Macrumors’ hands on video with a dummy model for the purported iPhone 8/Pro Read More ›

Maxkey SA Cyan On Dolch › A budget friendly SA profile keycap set.
Cyan on Dolch is a SA profile set from Maxkey SA; from a group by on KeyClack. Maxkeys sets are also significantly cheaper than Signature Plastics, this set was only ~$90 compared to the typical ~$150 one pays for an SA profile keycap set. Read More ›

Elvish SA Keycaps
A Chinese made SA Profile Keycap Set. Read More ›

Impossible Japanese Rope Ring Puzzle
Japanese TV show Knight Scoop attempts to solve an impossible to solve rope ring puzzle. Read More ›

Scott Forstall On The Genesis Of iPhone
Forstall, the project manager for iPhone left Apple in 2012. He was interviewed at the Computer History Museum on 6/20/17, discussing the original iPhone. Video link after the jump. Read More ›

Reviewing The First iPhone
Writing for Wired, Steven Levy looks back and the 'hype typhoon' surrounding the first iPhone's launch. Read More ›

In a sea of camera apps, what could possibly set Halide apart: Design. Read More ›

Everyday For 6 Years
I've been using the Everyday app for 6 years to take a picture of myself daily. This is the result. Read More ›

PowerUp › USB-C Charger With Built-In USB Hub
A full-sized USB-C charger with 3 integrated USB A ports for charge and sync. Clever. Read More ›

Mac Pro's Modular Future
Daring Fireball's John Gruber met with Apple yesterday to discuss the future of Mac Pro Read More ›

Chris is a project on Kickstarter for a 'digital co-driver'. Chris acts as a second screen for iOS and Android devices, and works with music and navigation, featuring voice and gesture control. Read More ›

'Cause I've Got A Golden Ticket › The Amazing Chocolatier SA
A smooth and chocolatey SA profile keycap set Read More ›

App Store Developer Replies
Curtis Herbert on developer replies in the app store, and how he will take care to engage with his customers. Read More ›

Night Shift in macOS Sierra 10.12.4
MacRumors explains Night Shift, new in macOS 10.12.4 Read More ›

Apple's VoiceOver Assistive Technology For The Blind
I've known for some time that Apple has great assistive technology for the blind in iPhone. I was vaguely aware of VoiceOver, but always wondered how it was used. To see it in action is pretty incredible. Read More ›

Fit Headless Displayport Adapter
A common issue with headless systems (especially on Macs) is that Remote Desktop won't function correctly without a monitor connected. The Fit headless adapter solves this problem. Read More ›

Blog Theme › New Look, More Functionality
Today I'm going live with a new theme for the blog. I'm really excited about the new look, and even more excited about the new functionality that the new theme offers. I loved the old look and feel, but it was time for a facelift. There has also been a lot more I'd like the site to be able to do - the new theme can do it. Read More ›

iOS vs Desktop Security
Great explanation from Matthew about the large attack surface presented by a modern desktop machine, and how it compares to mobile devices that were built with security and limited application power in mind. The piece can hopefully explain to the layuser some of the mindfulness that's needed to remain secure. Read More ›

Nintendo Switch Unboxing
Share Notes With iCloud
I learned just yesterday that it's possible to share notes (from iOS/macOS' built-in Notes app) with others via iCloud. I've been aware of this functionality in Reminders for some time now, but I'm glad to know that it's present in Notes as well. Read More ›

Theater At Apple Park
Apple is opening its new campus 'Apple Park' in April. Read More ›

Kinesis Contoured Model 110
A few days I added a Kinesis Countoured Model 110 to my collection. The predecessor to the Advantage and the Advantage 2, this model is over 20 years old. Read More ›

Everything Is On Fire › Fixing A Broken Mailserver
MacBook Pro Touchbar Lockdown
Peeqo The GIF Bot Video
Following up on my post from last month, the creator of Peeqo has created a video about his GIF bot. Read More ›

Kaby Lake CPUs
Intel's Kaby Lake CPUs were 'officially' launched today. Kaby Lake is a marked change from Intel's old Tick/Tock release schedule. Read More ›

Handwired Jellycomb Numpad › Mod Log
I see great possibilities with this numpad. The biggest reason why I prefer programmable boards vs standard boards is to get a certain set of keys - media controls and arrows. I largely see myself using the numpad at work when I'm using a 60% board. I can see myself using standard non-programmable boards now because all the critical keys I want/need are integrated into the numpad. Read More ›

South Carolina Ransomware
Government sanctioned and mandated ransomware, great. Read More ›

Peeqo The GIF Bot
This is an amazing DIY project from abhi3188 on Reddit. Read More ›

Dasher & Dancer Keycap Set
I'm really excited about this set. The only trouble I've got now - do I buy Dasher, or Dancer? Read More ›

The Load Out
Tomorrow I'm taking a 5 hour drive to one of my work's other offices. Read More ›

Useless Machine Build Log
Last weekend I picked up a Useless Machine from Barnes & Noble. I've wanted one for some time, but never got around to buying or building a kit. Read More ›

MacBook Pro Touch Bar Thoughts
Got my first chance to play with a Touch Bar MacBook Pro over the weekend. Read More ›

iCloud Call Log Sync
Turns out iCloud syncs your call logs. Elcomsoft reports. Read More ›

Off Doesn't Mean OFF › Shazam is always listening
Patrick Wardle's reversal of Shazam's code. Read More ›

Phillips Hue Motion Sensor
Phillips' Hue Motion Sensor seems like the perfect way to automate a great smart lighting platform, but is it? Read More ›

iPhone 7
Studio & Touch Bar
I got the opportunity to play with a Surface Studio at a Microsoft Store yesterday - the machine is absolutely incredible. Incredible! Read More ›

LightCycle Keycap Set
Really rad keycap set from The Van Keyboards. Read More ›

Borrowed Time
Incredible short film from Lou Hamou-Lhadj & Andrew Coats of PIXAR. Read More ›

Note 7 is dead
Too Late
Great short story from Reddit's r/WritingPrompts Read More ›

Signal Subpoena
Fortunately, Open Whisper Systems does things right. They use end-to-end encryption and log as little information as possible. Read More ›

Unlimited, Encrypted, Zero Knowledge Cloud Storage
The goal, as I see it, is to find a cloud storage solution that offers competitive pricing, and control over my content - specifically the ability to encrypt it prior to transit. Read More ›

iPhone 7 Ad
Apple if anything are a company about convictions. Read More ›

Apple's iPhone 7 Event › Quick Thoughts
Apple is once again proving how powerful it is to own the whole stack. They're doing something interesting with A10 fusion. Not only are they producing a 4 core phone, but they're actually using those cores intelligently (looking at you Android OEMs). Read More ›

Possible 40% w/Numpad Project
I've had a Zenith Data Systems keyboard with glorious Alps SKCL Greens for a while, and I've been trying to think of a project for it. Read More ›

WhatsApp Gets Zucked
Glad I never started using Whatsapp, even after they went encrypted by default. Read More ›

NBC Olympics
As a part of the millenial generation, I, like many of my peers do not watch traditional broadcast television. I am not merely a cord cutter, I am a 'cord never'. At no point in my adult life have I had cable or satellite service. Hell, I haven't even had an antenna for the past 5 years. Read More ›

iPhone 6S vs Note 7 Speed Test
Samsung's best effort from this year is still not enough to beat Apple's from last year. Read More ›

Profile Differences
SA profile is high, thick, ABS, but I didn't realize how big the height difference was until now. Read More ›

ErgoDox Phase III › Testing, Part 3
Work on my building my test ErgoDox is complete. I knew going into this build that I would need to improvise a lot, since this type of build (RGB Underglow) is not officially supported. I'll say that the decision to order two PCBs was a good one. Knowing that the first board was for testing and experimenting removed a lot of my stress. Typically when attempting something like this I'm quite stressful that I'll somehow destroy the board during the build. Given that I had 2 complete sets of PCBs + electronics made me worry free. Read More ›

Apple M0110
The M0110 is the board that shipped with the original 128K Macintosh in 1984. In good condition these boards typically go for north of $100. After months of waiting for the right board, I was able to snatch this one for a mere $35 shipped. Read More ›

ErgoDox Phase III › Testing, Part 2
Basic RGB LED strip functionality has been implemented. I spent 3 days bashing my head against my desk trying to figure out how to implement this _and_ get the firmware to compile successfully. Read More ›

ErgoDox Phase III › Testing, Part 1
Received my ErgoDox PCBS today. The adventurous idea of installing RGB LED strips on the thing begins. Read More ›

A Wild Golbat Appeared › 40% Keyboard Build Log
Some folks think a 60% keyboard is small, they've got nothing on 40% boards. Read More ›

Zenith Data Systems Keyboard › Alps SKCL Switches
I just got this Zenith Data Systems keyboard in. I'm not really sure what the model is, there are no labels or stickers on the board, so I'd need to crack it open to figure out exactly what it is. Read More ›

Nabi Dashcam
I've been pondering getting a dashcam for some months now. I am not a professional or commercial driver, and I'm not often in situations where I need to have a dashcam, but I think that they're potentially useful, and many are inexpensive. Read More ›

Storm Season
Board Surgery
Over the weekend I had to perform repair surgery on my white Alps64 board. After giving a tour of my office, my metal ErgoDox mockup fell off its wall mount, hitting the Alps64 on the way down.  Read More ›

Access-IS Ortholinear Board
Access-IS' boards are ortholinear matrix boards originally designed for POS. The ortholinear layout, mechanical switches, and programmable layout make them highly desirable for wonks like me. Read More ›

Knobs Schmobs!
I press a lot of buttons at my job, most of them suck. Read More ›

Ultratec Supercom 4400 TTY
Working in a building that has been occupied by a single company for 30+ years, I'm always scoping for odd and old equipment that has failed to be discarded. This caught my eye the other day, as all vintage-looking keyboards do. Read More ›

The Mille
From Alex Roy's series on The Drive about his experience at the Mille Miglia, a 1,000 mile road rally for classic cars. Read More ›

Clueboard Build Log
Enter Clueboard. Designed by Skullydazed, Clueboard is a 65% PCB designed precisely to the same dimensions as Leopold's F660. Clueboard supports a wide variety of layouts, and most importantly to me, support Hasu's TMK firmware. Read More ›

ErgoDox Phase II › Mockup
When I began planning my Ergodox build, I had my eyes on a build by witbliz using aluminum plates from AKmalamute's group buy. Read More ›

ErgoDox Build - Phase I › Research & Planning
My goal in this project is to build an ErgoDox that fits my desires and pushes the envelope of what's possible with the extant PCB. It would be simple and easy for me to acquire a PCB from Falbatech, some keycaps, an acrylic case from MechanicalKeyboards, and build a bog-standard ErgoDox. I'd like to be a bit more ambitious. Read More ›

The Pesky 5th Amendment Problem
So apparently the punishment these for refusing to have your 5th amendment rights violated is indefinite imprisonment. Read More ›

iMessage New Device Sec
You know when you add a new Apple device to your lineup, you inevitably get a message about a new device added to iMessage? Seems ridiculous doesn't it? I know I added the device, I was there. I always thought it was a bug, a remnant in iOS and OS X from the early days when iMessage was being developed. As they say, it's not a bug, it's a feature. Read More ›

Moving Day › Err...week...s
I've moved many times in my life. Perhaps a dozen total, five or six in my adult life. Moves have always been predicated by major life changes such as a new job, or a decision to go to college, or moving closer to an existing job to eliminate a commute. The move I made today was for a new reason: to start a life with someone. Read More ›

Hot Keys Project Warmaster
Hot Keys Project had a sale last month for Easter themed keycaps. I picked up this Warmaster in anticipation for my Satan GH60 build. Read More ›

Pleased to meet you. Hope you guess my name. › Satan GH60 Build Log
It started off as a 'throw some shit together that I have lying around' board into one I love and am very proud of. Read More ›

I'm Blue Da Ba Dee Da Ba Die... › Blue Alps Build (Video Log)
The other two Alps64 keyboard builds I've done were exercises in learning about the custom-keyboard world, and in sourcing parts. This build was far more ambitious. I wasn't simply accumulating and assembling parts - I got far more involved than that. This was definitely my most rewarding build yet. Six or seven months of preparations and acquiring parts culminated in a marathon 12 hour build session. Read More ›

Apple Building Their Own Servers?
As much as Apple is growing in enterprise there's bound to be interest in Apple server hardware, especially under Tim Cook's security focused Apple. Read More ›

State-Level Actors › You Want The Data? Go Get It!
The FBI is now confirming what many in the industry have been saying - they don't need Apple to get into this phone. Read More ›

When You Say Photocopying Machine...
NYT's 'Verbatim' series shows us a deposition from a suit about 'photocopiers' Read More ›

Cookie Monster uses Siri. Read More ›

More For The Collection
Last week I got in some new parts for a future build, a lovely Zorbcaps artisan keycap, and a really unique new-in-box vintage board. Read More ›

Data911 Rebuild › Why bother painting the back of the fence?
The Data911 (as it's called by some) is a 75% board with included trackpad manufactured by TG3. If you've found yourself in the front seat of a police cruiser, there's a decent chance you've encountered this board, but not known it. It was originally designed for law enforcement to be used in their vehicles. Read More ›

Planck Build › A 40% Ortholinear Keyboard
The Ortholinear keyboard concept has exploded within the keyboard community lately. Among the many that exist, those made by Jack Humbert's Planck and Atomic have proven to be incredibly popular. A recent group buy on Massdrop had hundreds of participants. Read More ›

Removing Dampers From Linear Matias Switches
I love an MX mount linear; Cherry/Gateron Reds are a lovely switch. I did find that Matias' linears, they very spongey, particularly when bottoming out. Further investigation revealed to me that Matias installs dampers. Cue the music, it was time to tweak and modify. Read More ›

The Art of the Bodge
Much like the British Leyland in the 1970's, sometimes you really only need to get things to 'good enough'. Read More ›

White Alps64 Round 2 Board #1 › Build Log of my SKCM White Alps64.
When you're writing a blog that revolves a lot around your hobby and projects, namely being a keyboard wonk, it's probably a good idea to write up a post about your first-ever project in that hobby. Read More ›

It's All About Precedent
This whole fight isn't about precedent at all he says. It's about know...for the families and stuff. Read More ›

If You Want Data, Don't Cock It Up
So it's law enforcement's own fault they can't access the data, and we should now trust them with the power of a backdoor to all iPhones? Read More ›

Open Letter from Tim Cook
People ask me why I like Apple, why I buy their products. Apple is the ONLY company standing up and defending encryption. Read More ›

The Best Version Of The Useless Machine
I've seen plenty of variants of the useless machine over the years. This is my favorite. Read More ›

Da Comrade! Ve Vill Drivink Anywhere In Sherp!
The SHERP is Alexei Garagashyan’s brilliant invention. It weighs just 2,866 pounds dry, so while it might only have a 44.3 horsepower 1.5 liter Kubota V1505 four-cylinder diesel linked to a five-speed manual, it will still do 28 mph on land, or 3.7 mph in water, depending on the wind. It will also crawl at up to 9.3 mph in first gear. Read More ›

Lastpass Logo Fail
As part of its acquisition by LogMeIn, Lastpass unveiled a new logo today. Read More ›

Work From Hoth Battlestation
Due to a pretty gnarly blizzard in my area today, the office was closed. Mind you, I wasn't clever enough to check my work email _before_ I drove to the office, so I rolled up at 9AM to find no cars there. Back to the apartment I went. Read More ›

Alert my Star Destroyer to prepare for my arrival
The cap is beautifully detailed and stays very true to its silver screen inspiration. It is immaculately casted of polyurethane, and allows backlighting to shine through Lord Vader's eyes. The work here is just stellar. There has been a rash lately of artisan keycaps that are if anything, over detailed. HiddenPower brings us a cap that has fantastic detail and nuance without allowing it to become too detailed or risking a poor looking cast job. This is exceptional work. Read More ›

Alps Party 60% Board #1 › Build Log of my SKCM Orange Alps64
I'm very pleased with how this board turned out. My favorite board is still my white Alps64, but I will admit that it doesn't come anywhere close to looking as great as this board does. I've been running the orange Alps64 as my daily driver for a few weeks now, and will probably continue to do so until I complete my blue Alps64.  Read More ›

My Planck Arrived!
Nearly 6 months after the group buy on Massdrop ended, my Planck has finally arrived! Read More ›

I received my KeyKollectiv MeowCap a few days ago. It's not my first artisan keycap, but it is the first one I've purchased. I'm such a cat lover that I couldn't NOT buy it. Read More ›

Mid-cycle iOS Update › Apple shipping new features in iOS 9.3
This is the first time since the original iPad and iOS 3.2 that I can recall Apple doing a mid-cycle iOS update with new features. Every September with the release of that year's iOS there is always a slew of new features, but in the interim it seems Apple's most popular OS can feel a bit stale. Read More ›

A Terrifying Piece of Paper
Turns out Swiss Watchmakers Aren't Original Either
Only 50 pieces will be made, all in white gold, and at a price of $24,900 – only a little bit more than the all-rose-gold Apple Watch Edition. If the watch costs that much, I wonder how much the photocopier was. Read More ›

Attack of the Clones
Every year at CES we see various OEMs debut that year's clones of what Apple did the previous year. Products the OEMs just weren't original enough to think of themselves. Hell, they don't settle for copying just the look, they copy the colors too. Read More ›

Brian Krebs' PayPal Account Compromised Again
The bottom line is that no amount of good passwords and out-of-band security is a match for a determined hacker and poor company policies. Read More ›

Melted Vader Keycap
I don't care for most artisan keycaps, but a keycap of Vader's mask as seen in The Force Awakens was a must have. Read More ›

Building Wall ⋅ E
Wall ⋅ E is the first complex/advanced Lego set I've built in probably a decade. Like many kids, I was nuts for Lego as a child, I'd spend hours and hours endlessly building and rebuilding things out if my giant container of parts (which I still have by the way). Read More ›

The Quest For Blue Alps › A bit about Alps switches, and the elusive blue
That's right, I did a buy-it-now on a listing for a computer that happens to come with a keyboard for the sole purpose of getting a keyboard that might be the one I'm after. Read More ›

The Expanse
The world in the Expanse is certainly captivating. Many of the problems that exist in modern-day Earth seem to have continued into the future as well. The Expanse is not a bright shiny utopia, there is struggle, there is a certainly poverty among the people working in the asteroid belt. Mind you, it's not entirely dark and gritty, but there is a definite sense of realism that the classes of people that exist today will have an analogue in the future as well. Read More ›

Beautiful student spec ad for Johnnie Walker
Zeobit exposes 13 million users' data
On Becoming a Keyboard Wonk
I suppose what made me fall in love with this board most of all was the feel of the keypress. It was so different from what I was used to with traditional keyboards. It was incredibly tactile, smooth, and required significantly less force (so it was easier on my fingers). All the flash gamer boards I'd ever played with at a Best Buy just didn't appeal to me, but getting my hands on this board really showed me the light. Read More ›

In Which He Decides To Start A Blog