It seems to me that Icarium must have meant “off center,” so that the keys are caused to bind in their shaft when they are not hit in the center. The problem might be eased by carefully applying a bit of graphite to the post, but I have never tried to do this. The keys can be removed by pulling them straight up with needle-nosed pliers (reinstall them in the same orientation without turning them 90 degrees; they can be turned 180 degrees!)
Most people probably simply learn to hit the keys more accurately in the center of the key-well, but I think the keys were designed erroneously with too large a “dish” in the center and with the outer ridge too close to the side keys. I would have made the “dish” about one-quarter or at most 5/16th of an inch in diameter. At the time, I thought it was not a huge error and it could be easily fixed, but it never has been---because no one in the company understands why the issue is as important as I feel it is. Men with large fingers do not easily understand the problem, and they are also not production typists, so they do not understand the issues of people who type continuously for long hours---even though they should---because the product they work with is the best ergonomic keyboard ever made with no other even coming close.
They have tuned me out on the point, I think, partly because they have felt they have more important matters to deal with, but I think they do not understand the importance of this issue to the efficient and effective use of the DH keyboard, and other users do not point it out to them because most people do not know what “better” is until they see or feel it more than briefly. They need to work with the change for long enough to understand why it is better. (The depronation issue with the DH is a similar issue. This is also an important issue for people who type for long hours, but people who are coming from the flat keyboards as their frame of reference do not understand why that is.)
Because of the small movements the fingers make among the five keys, it is very important to home accurately to the center of the key-well. This is how the fingers know where they are in relation to all five of the keys, but when the down key is a big dish, as it is, the fingers do not get any help understand where the center (home position) is. The feel of the center is amorphous and ambiguous with the current center key design. To fix this problem, I have cut the sides off of all my down keys, turning the key into a square post at the center of the key-well. That is enough to allow the fingers to accurately orient themselves in the key-well, but it is more important when using Dvorak than when using QWERTY because Dvorak emphasizes the center keys while QWERTY emphasizes the North keys which is the most awkward and inefficient movement on the DataHand keyboard. Dvorak users tend to understand more about efficiency in general, or they would not have converted to Dvorak layout in the first place. From the point of view of keyboard efficiency, QWERTY people are in the Stone Age, so they need to make the first steps in their thinking before they can go on to make the more complex further analytical steps. Anyone capable of making the necessary analysis would not be using QWERTY to start with. They would have moved to Colemak or Dvorak or something else, and they would be visionary enough to understand the benefits to be gained from the change (even though they are greater on the flat keyboard than they are on the DH just because the DH design fixes so much. The improved efficiency of the thumbs is a giant step for example.
As for the palm pad issue, I would take them off, put them to a sink and give them a good scrubbing with a soapy brush. Then, I would finish the cleaning by putting them through the dishwasher (though I do not remember ever needing to do this with my own palm pads. I have not cleaned mine in a decade, but I do wash my hands and I do work in a clean environment. The only cleaning my keyboard gets is the chance to be blown out with compressed air three or four times a year. That gets rid of accumulated dander in the key-wells, and I know when to do it after the dander build-up has started to block the light beam on the key-switches.
If I had an issue with the palm pads, I would want to cover them with some kind of washable cloth, not with plastic wrap, because I would not like the feel of that, but I suppose it has the advantage of stretching to fit. I do not have a problem with the feel of the pads, but I agree that a different feel could be preferable, but I also like a pad that is maintenance free, and mine have been easily maintained without needing attention.
Finally, on the company question, I think they should charge more than they do for the keyboard, so they will have more money to permanently fix the supplier issues and also because the keyboard is worth much more than any other keyboard---but to do this without killing the market, they would need to actively and effectively sell the full value of the product and not be intimidated by those who say, “No keyboard should cost that much.” This is something they have never historically been equipped to do, and they have not understood their own product well enough to do it. Before it can happen people must be able to fully understand the value and have the personnel with the skill to reach out and credibly sell it enthusiastically and positively, but most of the people involved in sales at the company in the past have been typical sales and business types without the ability to establish good empathy with users and potential users or to look or sound like anything more than what they have been: people trying to make a buck. Some have radiated the sense of a “hustle” as if they were shouting it into a megaphone, and that is the worst possible kind of a sales team to have when selling a radically different product that is already intimidating and even confusing---when most people expect keyboards to look like keyboards always have looked.
Most customers have have had to sell themselves on the product in the face of sales people who were historically more often a turn off and a bummer than a help. Needed are sales people who are thoroughly knowledgeable and committed users of the keyboard and fully understand from their own personal experience all the issues users need to confront. It takes a lot of support and commitment to good customer relations. They have had that lately and finally, but now they need to be able work out the troubles and focus on serving the market that does clearly exist.