Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Best I/O computer equipment

Nearly 10 years ago, I was starting to get shooting pains through my right wrist when typing at the keyboard. This would happen once or twice a week. Soon it spread to both wrists, and increased in frequency. Finally, it became an everyday experience. The pain was brief in duration, but intense--and I would have to quit typing. Carpal tunnel syndrome starting to rear it's ugly head. I started to panic--I'm a computer science teacher--perhaps time to go back to teaching mathematics full time--not something I really wanted to do.

I started to research this on the Internet. It became obvious that the first and easiest thing to try was to get a split keys keyboard, with the two main sections of keys angled like this ///\\\.

Keyboards
---------
Years ago, I spent over $100 on a keyboard called the "Darwin Smartboard". Though I use a different brand of keyboard today, the wrist pains ceased almost immediately, and never returned. As I use multiple computers at home and at work, I began the search for an inexpensive alternative. The obvious choice was one of the Microsoft ergonomic keyboards. However, as I became more involved with Linux, and I've watched Microsoft's behavior over the years, I have developed a strong aversion for purchasing anything Microsoft.

I ended up purchasing the Belkin ErgoBoard. Be carefull, Belkin sells two keyboards: "ErgoBoard" and "ErgoBoard Pro". The "ErgoBoard Pro" is crap. The "ErgoBoard" is wonderful. I own four of these, and they're great. Cost is $23.00 to $30.00 each.

Mice
----
I haven't much to say here except Logitech. Find the model that best suits your hands and needs. I'm not much of a gamer, so I haven't experimented with any of the gaming mice out there.

Monitors
--------
OK, at age 57, I'm not seeing quite as well as I used to--I have early onset of cataracts in both eyes (surgery next Summer). I need a big clear monitor. One day, in a computer store, I was comparing 22 inch widescreen LCD monitors. The one with the best display will probably surprise you: A Gateway FPD2275W. It was head and shoulders above the Samsungs and Viewsonics. At $330 it's no steal, but its clarity is breathtaking. I soon will have two of these, as I just ordered a second one.

Headset
-------
I've been recording some instructional screen-videos this Summer using gtk-recordmydesktop. For this I bought a Plantronics Audio 350 headset. At $21.99, it's not a high-end set, but the microphone has given me suprisingly good quality audio. I plan to purchase another.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Disclaimer

I own no stock and have no financial involvement with any of the mentioned companies/products, other than as a consumer.

gaming - an outsiders view

I have a friend who is quite a good gamer, he has a logitech gaming mouse/ keypad. I forget the model type/number.

Best things about it, lightweight, 2 replaceable batteries and a desktop charger so one is always able to use. And on top of all of this the mouse is a lazer optical with a resolution of about 5 megapixel, yes excessive for a mouse but when placed on the glass mouse pad he has it's quite a sweet setup Smile. cost him £30ish from what I remember him saying ($60ish) but comparing it to a synaptics mouse is a very large difference, and I am tempted to get one next time I build a pc and move from my laptop.

I think basically a wireless optical/infra-red mouse makes usability a lot easier.

He also has a keypad which is an ergonomic small keyboard with the most often keys that are used for most games and most games allow you to remap anyway, but having about 20 keys close to hand. Not useful for typing his coursework, but for gaming I must admit from experience it feels a lot better. I believe this cost him £15ish ($30) so worth looking around.

More in Tux Machines

Ubuntu 14.10 Released, openSUSE GNOME Peek, and Debian Multimedia

ubuntuThe release of Ubuntu 14.10, codenamed Utopic Unicorn, was the big news today. But in other news, Kostas Koudaras has a sneak peek of GNOME in upcoming openSUSE 13.2 and Alessio Treglia shared some bits on Debian 8.0 multimedia. Miguel de Icaza announces Mono for the Unreal Engine and, finally, Erich Schubert says avoiding systemd isn't hard at all. Read more

eBay joins open-source community with ultra-fast OLAP engine for Hadoop

Like arch-rival Amazon.com, the soon-to-split eBay Inc. is something of an oddity in that it hasn’t historically been a big contributor to the open-source community. But the e-commerce pioneer hopes to change that with the release of the source-code for a homegrown online analytics processing (OLAP) engine that promises to speed up Hadoop while also making it more accessible to everyday enterprise users. Read more

DHS report makes recommendations for greater open source software use in government

A report commissioned by the Homeland Security Department's Science and Technology Directorate say barriers to using and developing open source software must be addressed as IT budgets across government continue to tighten. Read more

Calculate Linux Provides Consistency by Design

Calculate Linux has a rather interesting strategy for desktop environments. It is characterized by two flavors with the same look and feel. That does not mean that the inherent functionality of the KDE and Xfce desktops are compromised. Rather, the Calculate Linux developers did what you seldom see within a Linux distribution with more than one desktop option: They unified the design. Read more