Deathshadow's Madness
Madness and you, perfect together

16 Jul 2017 - Model F My ARSE

A friend shared an article off NPR's "All Tech Considered" section that really raised the hackles on my hackles. Normally I don't use this area of the site for blogging, but given what total BULLSHIT the subject of said article is -- mated to the fact that MOST places seem to stamp out any dissension or post calling it out for being bull -- I'm decidedly making an exception!

Simply put, we have some joker claiming he's "bringing back" the Model F...

Their site is here:

First off they make a version without the numeric keypad or the function keys -- fine, I guess for fringe whackos who put form over function having the OPTION isn't the end of the world, but seriously, LOOK at the bloody LAYOUT of even the 'proper' version in terms of JUST the core key area (ignore the keypad area):

What the **** makes this a model F?!?

That's a Model M layout!

Just for reference, THIS is a REAL Model F:

A Real IBM Model F

What in blazes makes this an F? Does it have the same crappy low quality key action that was one of the BIGGEST complaints that led to the model M being the desirable one? The F's switches were RUBBISH -- the ONLY reason such a retro keyboard would be attractive is if you put modern cherry types in it, or had actual bucking springs -- and in the case of the latter that would PROBABLY be a violation of Unicomp's IP rights!

Now, there were a LOT of keyboards CALLED model F, but theirs isn't even the right layout in the "core" area on things like ALT, CTRL, or CAPS-Lock to qualify as being called such! REGARDLESS of which F you compare it to -- even the ONLY version even CLOSE to worth being mentioned, the metal cased ones that were NOT in fact by any stretch of the imagination ACTUALLY Model F's. (Hence those APPROACHING the M layout, but not quite nailing it!)

I also find it comical one of the BEST parts of the F -- the tabs on the side for extending/retracting the feet so you didn't have to screw around flipping the keyboard over -- and making them so integral to the design you couldn't accidentally snap them off like so many modern designs -- is nowhere to be found... Also seems like every one of their designs that has their own in-house case layouts are carefully crafted to be as uncomfortable and unnaturally shaped in the palm-rest area as possible...

Though this train wreck of sleazy scam artist marketing BS doesn't go FULL retard until we talk price -- $300 to $400 a pop. I could custom build from scratch building Cherry extra blacks and have a hundred or two left over. When Unicomp can still build the much more mechanically complex and far more desirable Model M buckling switch keyboards for $84 (at the time of writing this article), anyone DUMB ENOUGH to throw $300 to $500 at one of these has more money than brains -- and clearly doesn't know enough about Vintage hardware to be flapping their gums on the bloody topic!

At the heart of it, I suspect that's the ONLY reason these even get the "Model F" name thrown at it. It's like a sci-fi series based on the cover art of a novel where the writers and producers clearly never read it, much less cared about it. They use the name for recognition and nothing else, in this case likely because saying "Model M" would put them up against Unicomp's legal team. It is NOTHING more than an attempt dupe hipsters out of their money like we were talking about modern manufactured belt driven turntables and tube driven amps. Or worse, the fools who think there's an audible difference between FLAC and variable rate 512kbs max MP3 -- there's a reason FLAC-tards use 128kbps fixed rate to card-stack their bullshit claims!

... and the way NPR's article gushes about it shows a level of ignorance, incompetance, and lack of research that anything resembling journalistic integrity was clearly thrown out the window; The same way a "Soccer Mommie" doing her "Internet research" rants about the evils of vaccines whilst shoving steaming jade eggs into their holiest of holies. I guess with pseudo-science quackery like anti-vax, anti-gmo, and so forth being the leftist moonbat version of the right wingnut climate change denial and creationism, such blatent snake oil peddling cash grabs and promotion of ignorance shouldn't surprise me; but there WAS a time when NPR meant something.

In any case, you want a GOOD mechanical keyboard with decent switches and the proper spacing, look, and feel -- WITHOUT breaking the bank on marketing scam hoodoo, go visit Unicomp's website.

About Me


This site was created by Jason M. Knight, a retired software engineer with nearly four decades experience in electronics, software development, and graphic arts - not to mention a wide range of hobbies including Saxophone, EWI, programming, carving, drawing, and just being a general pain in the ass on web development forums ripping new holes for the nimrods who think HTML 5, JQuery or Dreamweaver are actually good things.

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Featuring articles, tutorials, and rants about web development. The focus of the site on minimalist semantic markup, separation of presentation from content, graceful degradation, and accessible design.


A small lightweight JavaScript library designed to promote good practices without becoming a bloated mess like most of the "frameworks" out there. Simplifies common cross-browser tasks, aids in navigating and manipulating the DOM, and polyfills bits of ECMAScript 5 that are not to be found in any version of IE.


An informational website about the Akai EWI - Electronic Wind Instrument.