Another one from the archive…


19 Jun 2020, 15:22

Let's see if anybody has an idea what this was for.
Board.jpg (255.43 KiB) Viewed 749 times


19 Jun 2020, 16:13

I have seen hundreds of ergo keyboards but I don't remember that one.

Is it something you've been involved in in Germany?

The holes around some switches must be for PCB-mounted stabiliser, and should indicate the keys's size and orientation.


21 Jun 2020, 23:24

It is not just an ergo keyboard…

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22 Jun 2020, 00:54

...a flying ergo keyboard?


22 Jun 2020, 16:33

OK, here is the full device.

The name of the project was COSSMA (COmputer SchnellSchreibMAschine - Computer fast typewriter). It is a keyboard for chorded entry, where you type a complete syllable in one action. It was supposed to allow really fast typing way in excess of normal keyboards. And it actually did. Though it required quite some training, I never nearly mastered it.

It also had a ton of complete words and phrases. This is almost 30 years old now.

The interface it uses is ADB (Macintosh) as using PS/2 turned out to be way too messy for this application and USB was not yet around.

As a research project it ended with a patent granted on the input method and not a single unit produced for sale.
COSSMA.jpg (1.28 MiB) Viewed 534 times


22 Jun 2020, 17:04

I thought about chording because you hinted you were German and I knew Siemens made a chording keyboard for Bundespost.

I thought the number of keys on this one would have ruled out chording though, as most chorded keyboards don't have nearly as many keys.
Last edited by Findecanor on 22 Jun 2020, 19:45, edited 2 times in total.

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22 Jun 2020, 17:16

ddrfraser1 wrote:
22 Jun 2020, 00:54
...a flying ergo keyboard?
Ok so in a way I was right ;)

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22 Jun 2020, 18:25

Nice. It reminded me of the NEC keyboards but doesn't have the same thumb cluster.

Only other information I can find is


22 Jun 2020, 21:12

This one had nothing to do with Siemens :)

The idea here was to type syllables, the position of the key blocks is somewhat related to the position of the letter in the syllable. The algorithm turning this into useful words was the part that got a patent.


23 Jun 2020, 23:52

Found this one in our store. We had nothing to do with this one, just got it as a reference unit for some project.

So this one is an actual shorthand keyboard. But I have no idea how to use it…
Treal.jpg (1.09 MiB) Viewed 297 times

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