After leaving one job for another, I no longer had a fresh supply of spare keyboards laying around and had to (gasp!) buy my own. Being in a hurry, I purchased eight dollars of plastic at MalWart and quickly discovered that it was driving me crazy. I could feel a slight scraping as each mushy key was depressed. Although a Northgate or a clone was out of my price range, I was able to find one of IBM’s famed “Model M” keyboards on Ebay for $15 shipped.
The Model M weighs about five pounds, and could easily be used to break a car window in an emergency. The best part about it is the mechanical switching in each key, which provides instant, clean feedback, but without undue pressure. The worse part is that it is huge and the barrage of clicks sounds like something stolen from the set of Brazil. Nevertheless, it’s a vast improvement over the disposable keyboard it replaces.
My ideal keyboard would be wireless, have a trackpoint, and have a small footprint. Perhaps one of these?