So today I came across the story of a new Cooler Master keyboard, which claims to be very IBM Model M-like, but with modern styling and conveniences.
The verdict is that this keyboard is even stiffer than the Model M, which raises a question that not many are asking. Maybe I’m showing my age and everyone else is too young. But to me, the obvious question is how the Cooler Master CM Storm and its Cherry MX green key switches compare to the Model M’s predecessor, the IBM Model F?
I have limited experience with the Model F, though I did log a fair number of hours on PC/XT keyboards in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The earlier IBM keyboards were stiffer than the Model M, but their keyboard layouts weren’t quite as nice as the Model M. It dates to the time before IBM copied DEC’s VT-102 keyboard layout. The original pre-1985 XT keyboard was especially clunky. The Model F was better, adding a nice, big, L-shaped Enter key, but even that can be a little awkward for typing anything but straight alphanumeric text due to only having one Ctrl and Alt key, and having some of its secondary keys in awkward places. There’s a reason why the keyboard layout of the Model M has survived as the standard since 1985 with very minor changes.
But I digress. Knowing what I now know about the Cherry MX green key switches, I might actually be willing to take a look at a keyboard that uses them. I learned to type on a manual typewriter–and my school didn’t have air conditioning either!–so it might feel comfortable to me. I would think that people of a certain age might like something that feels like a Model F, but with a modern keyboard layout and conveniences. I definitely wouldn’t buy one sight unseen, though–I would want to be able to spend a few minutes typing on one.
Now, about that age thing. For the record, I didn’t walk to school, the principal did cancel school if we had 12 feet of snow on the ground even though he was from Minnesota, and it wasn’t uphill both ways. Just so that much is clear.