Last week we saw a giant Raspberry Pi board that actually works, now the smallest of the Pi boards has been used to create an absolutely tiny, but fully functional keyboard.
Hackaday user TEC.IST couldn’t find a keyboard small enough to use with extremely small PCs or portable devices, so they decided to make one to meet the bill. The end result is a keyboard that’s roughly the same size as three pennies in a row.
It uses a PCB placed directly on a Raspberry Pi Pico, which allows a 59-key keyboard in an area measuring only 51 x 21mm with the letters printed directly to the PCB for each key. There is no space for the keys and typing is done using your fingernails on the tiny tactile switches. The Pico manages the decoding of the key matrix and offers a USB interface.
While you don’t want to type for long periods of time on this keyboard, it could come in handy under the right circumstances and can easily be carried in a pocket. The cost isn’t high either, with TEC.IST stating that if you include the Pico, each finished keyboard costs around $ 20.
All required files and a list of components are available on this project’s Hackaday page and there is also a video overview of the CircuitPython code used to make the keyboard functional.