Hello from Keyboardio World Headquarters in Oakland, California! We're stopping over for a couple of days on our trip up the Pacific coast.
Yesterday, we were at CRASH Space in Culver City, CA. CRASH space may hold the record for the smallest physical space of any of the hackerspaces we've visited so far. It was, however, remarkably well-equipped. In addition to the ubiquitous common room, they had a sewing and 3D printing lab, a quite respectable EE lab, a laser cutter, a wood shop with a lathe and a ShopBot Desktop, and another shop with a variety of tools including a vacuum-forming setup.
Many hackerspaces have multiple tiers of membership. The way it works at CRASH Space is that after 3 months as a regular member, you can pay a bit extra each month to become a key holder and get 24/7 access to the space and workshops.
Lots of the hackerspaces we've visited along our route have incubated successful Kickstarter campaigns — they're great places for building, designing and learning — but we think that this is the first time we've visited a space that's hosted the development of something we've backed ourselves: The FlipBooKit. CRASH Space has also hosted several nice looking 3D printer design projects. One that caught our eye was the Bukito, which runs off 12V power and, we're told, was the first 3D printer to successfully print something while held aloft by a drone.
The meetup ran for a good 3 hours and we were joined by around 30 people. Kickstarter backer 'ailogic' mentioned on the comment thread that he's planning to design a travel case for the Model 01. When he pulled out a tape measure and started measuring the Model 01, we quickly figured out that meetup attendee Jonathan and ailogic were the same person. We talked a little bit about what he's designing. We're pretty excited. With luck, he may even make it available for sale once he's perfected it.
Dominic Muller took a Model 01 prototype off into a corner to get familiar with the layout. At one point about 30 or 40 minutes in, we took a peek over his shoulder and discovered that he was diligently working on his typing speed. Within an hour he was at 75 WPM. As far as we know, that's a new record for a Model 01 user's first hour.
As one attendee left, he commented to us that our roadshow reminded him a lot of the Welcome To Nightvale roadshow, but that ours was a lot less expensive. (Free events are infinitely cheaper than even the cheapest paid events.) He commented that "each one was just as weird in its own way." We're taking that as a compliment.
Since we last wrote, we've driven 372 miles, bringing us to 6,502 miles since we left Boston. That 6502 number, while a total coincidence, is near and dear to Jesse. It's the model number of the processor in his first computer, an Apple IIe.
As of this writing, 1,362 backers have pledged $420,859 for 1,352 keyboards. Right now, we'll need to order 86,528 keyswitches to make your keyboards.
We're at home today and tomorrow, but will be at Eugene Maker Space on Wednesday evening. If you're near Eugene, Oregon, come say hi! We might even have a clicky prototype Model 01 with us...