Replacement Keyboards

Discuss peripherals for the XO and power management.

Replacement Keyboards

Postby jnk27 » Mon Jan 28, 2008 11:21 am

I didn't know if the XO would stand up to 3-year old abuse, and sadly :roll: I now know it won't. The weak point is they pealed off the rubberized keyboard like stickers. It should be an easy do-it-yourself fix IF I can get the spare part. Any ideas how to obtain that?


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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby franco » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:39 pm

Until you find a spare parts supplier, have you tried using a usb keyboard to get around the problem?
If I give advice it is usually because I did it / tested it successfully on my XO. I will warn you otherwise.
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby malibu1123 » Fri Feb 01, 2008 2:39 pm

My two year old just did the same thing!! I'm so upset. I hope we can find a solution!
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby Niels » Sun Feb 10, 2008 9:26 pm

Any word on keyboards?
My daughter did this to several keyboards on other laptops when she was about two or three. My son did this to my wife's laptop last week (much easier to replace standard laptop keys, by the by).

So, hint for all XO developers who don't have kids (yet): families tend to have more than one kid. Usually somewhere around three, ranging up to 10 or more. If you send one of these XO laptops home with a school-age child, there's at least a 50% chance that there are preschoolers in the home.















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I think it would make more sense to have the top of the membrane be dead flat and have very thin protrusions on the underside for key contact. The weak link in the current design is the very thin perimeter at the base of each key. Not only is that going through enormous cyclic loading, but it's easy to dig a fingernail under it. Especially if you're a 3 year old boy and just desperately want to find the little people in there carrying all those letters over to the screen so fast.
Last edited by Niels on Thu Feb 14, 2008 12:05 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby teefal » Wed Feb 13, 2008 12:28 pm

Wow, that photo made me feel much better. My two-year old has only managed to pull off the E key.

+1 on a source for replacement keyboards!
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby ewoud » Wed Feb 20, 2008 9:39 am

Please have a look at here and here for keyboard upgrade instructions.

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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby tulsiani » Thu Mar 20, 2008 11:47 pm

My four-year old removed the U-key the same day we got the XO. Thinking that it was a defect, I obtained a RMA number to return the unit for repair but after reading the posts about the keyboard, I'm guessing that Brightstar will likely reject the repair indicating abuse :cry:

Rather than spend $11 for shipping the unit back and getting it back as is, I guess that I will keep it until OLPC can figure out a better keyboard cover and make them available for purchase. Reading all the posts, it is clear that this is not an isolated problem.

+2 on a source for better replacement keyboards!
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby Leisureguy » Tue Mar 25, 2008 12:37 pm

My 4-year-old grandson (he'll be 5 in April) had his OLPC for 3 days before the rubber keycover was torn---just above the 'U' key. Ideally, I would like to get a replacement kit: new rubber keycover, along with a link to a detailed, illustrated PDF on how to remove the old keycover and install the new one. Think this will ever be available?

Given the delicacy of the current keycover, I think it would be best to find another, tougher material (flexible Kevlar?) or sell the replacement keycovers in sets of 3 or so.

OTOH, he *loves* the computer. That's nice. But something must be done so we can replace that keycover.
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby Nayantara » Tue Mar 25, 2008 3:56 pm

Luckily have not had to experience this result of keyboard peeling activity.

Considering the membranes just cover the actual key (mechanism) could you not get some rubber cement and glue it back?

I would try it with a single key to check. Should probably cleanup any existing dried up glue before and use minimal rubber cement. Just a thought/suggestion, YMMV. :mrgreen:
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby sanjsrik » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:07 pm

All, thank you for this thread, I thought as well that this was an isolated issue.

So, I have one question, if these are 4-year-olds (which mine is and peeled the "J" key off of the keyboard after only a month) what kind of abuse and torture are these things meant to stand up to in other countries?

Isn't that the whole point, make these durable?

So, essentially, we paid for one laptop for our children, sent one overseas and had them non-functioning within what? A month?

That's a waste of money, effort, time, and quite honestly, good will.

They made these things NON-DURABLE. So, if they can't withstand 4-year-olds in the US, etc., HOW IN HECK are they supposed to withstand abuse in foreign countries?
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby Leisureguy » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:48 pm

Ours had a rip within 3 days. No real hard usage, either. Interesting that they are around the same place ("j" and "u" keys).
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby sanjsrik » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:54 pm

Does ANYONE from OLPC read these forums or are they hiding behind the "it's a non-profit" shield and refusing to fix the keyboards as I've read on this forum?

Sounds very obnoxious, I read the certifications for the hardware on another page on the site, well, if someone certified these as passed inspection, they should have lost their jobs.

Seriously, this is like buying a car and the wheels fall off and the manufacturer says, sorry you drove it, so it's your fault.

Someone posted they'd wait until OLPC sells a better keyboard, that's not acceptable.

OLPC should own up that the design is flawed, recall the laptops, replace ALL of them, EAT THE COST, and resend them out.

They're still shipping thousands of these flawed machines. Without a keyboard, the laptop is useless.


Is it worth exploring legal options?
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby Leisureguy » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:02 pm

I personally would be satisfied to pay for a replacement rubber keyboard cover/membrane along with a PDF showing detailed and illustrated instructions on how to remove the old cover and install the new one. I doubt that the company can afford a recall, but surely they could afford to sell replacement covers and work up instructions.
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby sanjsrik » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:07 pm

This was a flaw in the design which makes the laptops useless once the keyboard becomes damaged.

this is definitely a recall issue.

I'm sorry, I can't be concerned that the "company can't afford a recall" that's really not the relevant point here, it's making these units completely unusable.
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Re: Replacement Keyboards

Postby sanjsrik » Thu Mar 27, 2008 3:25 pm

The only thing I'm glad about is that I bought this thing with my Amex, thank god they have buyer's protection. I'm calling them to claim a broken machine since my daughter can't even use this thing any more.

OLPC, thanks for sending out tens of thousands of flawed machines.
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