February has been treating us fairly well. In this February update, we will be going over the following:
- 5Q Hardware Progress
- Q Software Progress
- 5Q Accessories
- New Side Inscriptions on 5Q Function Keys
- Updating Your Shipping Address
- Das Keyboard Team News
5Q Hardware Progress
On the HW product side we’re in the calm before the storm… That means production processes are being tested and verified with little tweaks being implemented to make sure volume production (the storm) is as smooth as possible.
We’re adjusting things like the size and shape of the LED pcb mounting pads, validating the operation of the onboard production test SW, and completing production fixtures for things like keycap seating (with a defined and even pressure). A couple other adjustments are being made on the level of doping (mold compound additive) in the keycap inscription plastic to insure maximum light transmission while still producing a good non-backlit inscription on the keycap surface. And we’re beginning the formal regulatory certification testing.
All in all we’re pretty much on track for this “pre-production” phase of product development.
Q Software Progress
The software team is working hard to complete the firmware and the desktop software whose job is to configure the 5Q keyboard. Plenty of code that works and plenty that is still in flux.
Here are the moving parts:
- Q cloud
- Q desktop + service
- Q firmware
- Q Android
Besides implementing features such as RGB effects and macros, one of the key functionality we are working on is a continuous release system. For example, we want to be able to release Q cloud several times a day if needed. Of course, we will have longer cycles for the desktop apps. So far, the release system for Q cloud and Q Android are working very well. Our focus now is to complete it for Q desktop, its service, and the Q firmware.
Another big piece we are working on is the interface of the Q desktop app with the physical keyboard via the software service. A working demo was used to do our demos at CES in Las Vegas. Now we are heads down, writing its final implementation. We’ll release some betas as soon as we are ready.
March will be the month when we put all the moving parts together. An exciting time is ahead.
In other news, we also sent out another reminder invitation this month to our Early Access Q Software backers about joining our private beta. The email contains details about how to enter our early software, connect with Zapier and IFTTT services, and join our Q forum community.
If you have any questions regarding access or have not received an email, please let us know via our help desk: https://daskeyboard.mojohelpdesk.com/mytickets/create.
5Q Accessories – Gamma Zulu Keycap Set Box
Many backers are also receiving an extra set of keycaps. We’ve previously shared images of the black translucent keycap set. Since then, we have been working on the keycap set box. Here are some pictures of the inside layout:
5Q Accessories – WASD Keycaps
Early in our campaign, we promised a set of WASD keycaps with every 5Q keyboard. Check out these early models below. These are not 100% ready, but we’re getting pretty close.
5Q Accessories – Translucent Black Keycaps
The translucent black keycaps are a hit and we’ve been busy ensuring that several different variations are being created. We’re creating translucent black keycaps with inscriptions in 9 different languages as well as ones without any inscriptions. They are filled with light when the backlighting is on and look as normal black keycaps when the backlighting is off.
New Side Inscriptions on 5Q Function Keys
We’ve added side inscriptions to some of the function keys for quick access to some of the controls like sleep mode, brightness, windows key disable, and media. Enable these quick access functions with Fn + Function Key.
Need to Update Your Shipping Address?
Our CrowdOx surveys have closed and orders can no longer be altered, but addresses can still be updated until March 10th. After that time, any change requests will delay your order and you will not receive your package at the same time as all the other backers. If you wish to request an address change, please contact our help desk as soon as possible at https://daskeyboard.mojohelpdesk.com/mytickets/create.
Other Updates: Das Keyboard Team News
The Das Keyboard team is evolving and we’re excited to share the news. We have new members joining the team and two who are leaving us.
The Going Away Party
Last Friday, we threw our two interns, Baptiste and Vincent, a going away party as their 6-month internship has ended. We wish them all the best!
Intern Safety Training
Two new interns recently joined our team. Welcome, Roxanne & Loic! To teach these interns for the dangers of the job, we proposed an Intern Safety Training session.
Fire Escape Simulation – In case of a fire, interns must be in physical shape to rescue keyboards from fire.
Lifting Training – The proper way to carry boxes of keyboards is to lift with your legs not your back.
New Q Software Team Members
In order to improve our Q software progress, we are adding a few more team members to focus on its development. Say hello to:
Until next time,
Julie + Das Keyboard Team