Ndifreke Ekott

Thoughts, stories, ideas and programming

27 Sep 2019

Going cheap isn't always the way out

Today has been a hell of a day for me and has made me wonder what in the world was I thinking. I have spent a lot of time today making three trips to the Curry’s store returning items I bought. To provide a bit of context, I recently got myself a table so that I can have a comfortable corner to do some studying. As a result of this excellent purchase, I have had to buy a few peripherals for my MacBook Pro.

I needed two items to complete my station - a mouse pad or mat and an external keyboard. Looking at this, you would wonder why this was such a headache in the beginning? My day went wrong when with my bad judgement of measurement, I bought a smaller mouse pad than I expected. It didn’t fit my table space, and so I had to return it. I also wanted to buy an external keyboard with a dedicated number pad. I currently have a small portable Logitech keyboard which I purchased over a year ago for my iPad.

The Logitech keyboard works, but due to the size, it didn’t feel comfortable to be on it for a prolonged period. I noticed as I typed, I could feel a strain on my wrist, and as a result, this warranted the need for an external keyboard. It does serve its purpose with my iPad when I am on a train commute. So thus began the mission this faithful Saturday to find me a keyboard.

The first trip to the store, I got myself a cheap keyboard; after all, I didn’t want anything fancy. On getting home, plugged it in, but it just felt wrong. The keys were hard, and the tilt angle of the keyboard was just off. Disappointed, I looked at a few keyboard options and read a couple of reviews and settled for the Microsoft Surface Keyboard.

The Microsoft Surface keyboard is way cheaper than the Apple keyboard and pretty much has that look and feel you get from an apple device. I did read on the website that it was compatible with the Mac and iPad. The Microsoft Laptop felt good and gave me that apple keyboard feel but, some key mapping issues arouse. The significant difference between a windows keyboard and a Mac keyboard is the position of the Command (Windows Key) and Options (Alt key) button. Some articles describe the situation, and so I won’t get into it here.

I couldn’t get the keys to map correctly for some reason map the windows key to a setting that would work well as a Mac keyboard. The keyboard settings in the iOS didn’t accurately respond to the external keyboard as I would hope. Was I ready to adjust my typing to suit the Windows Keyboard? I was afraid this would ruin my Mac experience and thus began my third trip to the Curry’s store for the second time today.

This trip wasn’t going to be funny. I had the nagging thought that someone would think I was up to something fishy. I put on my “I want to speak to your manager” face just in case I needed it. And I was right, met the guy behind the counter who started to give me a hard time, a bit of patience and a more reasonable manager came along, and my exchange was approved. I got the Mac Keyboard (I never thought this day would happen).

Finally got home, tried on the keyboard and boy did everything snap into place. The whole situation has got me thinking the incompatibility with other keyboard is an Apple technique to keep you hooked onto their ecosystem. So I am typing this story using the newest Apple product in my house. Feeling exhausted and having lost time on ticking on my todo list for today, I relax to a few chicken wings. And I can tell you “ain’t nothing like a chicken wing” to soothe the spirit.