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Thread: Symbolics Space Cadet and Knight LISP Machine Keyboards

  1. #1
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    Default Symbolics Space Cadet and Knight LISP Machine Keyboards

    Does anyone have one or aware of the patent numbers for these?

    I'm using LISP in Emacs and am trying to duplicate the keybindings on an iMac keyboard. I'm would like to find a function that maps hand position, finger position, hand finger combinations to keys, to Zmacs or Emacs functions.

    I'm suspicious that M-x was actually equivalent to the key left of the Symbolics Tab. Also, it seems more natural that when using Control, the hands rotate exposing just the right amount of keyboard to use with the modifier key.

    Appreciate any guidance you have.

    Thanks!

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    https://drop.com/vote/GMK-Space-Cadet
    http://xahlee.info/kbd/space-cadet_keyboard.html
    https://kono.store/products/input-cl...bolic-keyboard
    http://stevelosh.com/blog/2012/10/a-modern-space-cadet/
    https://github.com/hanshuebner/symbolics-keyboard

    You can still buy them, possibly, from http://www.symbolics-dks.com/ but only if they have them in stock and I think they try to keep them paired together with MacIvory systems. And they cost a very pretty penny. And you would need to buy or build an ADB to USB box and write the keymap file for unix.

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    Thanks this was helpful. I'm very interested the Knight SAIL keyboard, because I think the ergonomics may have been thought of differently. Perhaps with 30 degree hand rotation for modifier keys.

    Quote Originally Posted by bifo86 View Post
    https://drop.com/vote/GMK-Space-Cadet
    http://xahlee.info/kbd/space-cadet_keyboard.html
    https://kono.store/products/input-cl...bolic-keyboard
    http://stevelosh.com/blog/2012/10/a-modern-space-cadet/
    https://github.com/hanshuebner/symbolics-keyboard

    You can still buy them, possibly, from http://www.symbolics-dks.com/ but only if they have them in stock and I think they try to keep them paired together with MacIvory systems. And they cost a very pretty penny. And you would need to buy or build an ADB to USB box and write the keymap file for unix.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bifo86 View Post
    You can still buy them, possibly, from http://www.symbolics-dks.com/ but only if they have them in stock and I think they try to keep them paired together with MacIvory systems. And they cost a very pretty penny. And you would need to buy or build an ADB to USB box and write the keymap file for unix.
    Last I heard, DKS had to artificially inflate their price to keep keyboarders out and retain stock for actual legacy customers, not because they want to turn a massive markup. His prices used to be cheap but when demand "mysteriously" took off something had to be done.
    = Excellent space heater

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeXT View Post
    Last I heard, DKS had to artificially inflate their price to keep keyboarders out and retain stock for actual legacy customers, not because they want to turn a massive markup. His prices used to be cheap but when demand "mysteriously" took off something had to be done.
    Makes you wonder if they have enough of the IP and design documents to just make some more!

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    I know that the history of DKS involved purchasing a number of licensing and design ownership rights from Symbolics when they folded but I don't know if that includes the keyboard. Consulting with them to see the viability of manufacturing more (because as we all know there is demand from them) is far out of my jurisdiction.
    = Excellent space heater

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeXT View Post
    Last I heard, DKS had to artificially inflate their price to keep keyboarders out and retain stock for actual legacy customers, not because they want to turn a massive markup. His prices used to be cheap but when demand "mysteriously" took off something had to be done.
    It was quite pricey to get equipment from them before the keyboard fad kicked off, there have been retro-computing people wanting to lay hands on their stock for at least twenty years if not longer, but the prices are certainly to keep that stock for actual legacy customers without a doubt. They do sometimes sell Macivory systems to hacker-hobbyists: http://www.loper-os.org/?p=2857

    But he's talking about doing microscopic scans of the actual chips so that they can not only be emulated accurately on an FPGA (or an array of them, I don't know what all would be required, way over my head) but actively developed. His blogs are fascinating, he's fairly obsessed with the idea of the lisp machine as the ideal development computer, and he is of course correct.

    EDIT: Of course, I say that, and it appears that DKS or someone is dumping parts right now: https://www.ebay.com/sch/58058/i.htm..._nkw=Symbolics
    Last edited by bifo86; November 21st, 2019 at 10:31 PM.

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