Also, I had a lot of friends that would like to hide all the IM and youtube screens when the boss passes by, so maybe this will help =P
Most of the modern computer keyboards don't use the "Scrll Lock" (or Bloq Despl in spanish) for anything, so we will use this key to trigger the hiding function in windows.
I hope you have fun doing it as I had fun making it.
BTW, I was a member like for 4 years now, but this is my very first instructable.
Thank you!! and please have a look at my blog for extra pics: my blog
UPDATE: Just to be clear, this instructable is not about hacking your actual keyboard, but hacking and attaching an extra one to your regular computer, so you end using your regular keyboard and also this hacked one, both at the same time. Have fun!
Step 1: The Parts
2) A multimeter - not a must, but it really helps to check everything OK
3) An arcade switch - this will be the switch on the pedal
4) An unused cardboard box - I had several unused boxes from AMD processors, U can use one of these boxes
5) A soldering iron
6) A dremel tool
7) Some cable, about 6 ft.
8) The AutoHotKey free windows application that you can find here: http://www.autohotkey.com/download/
Step 2: Unscrewing the Keyboard and Finding the "Scroll Lock" Key
1) You will have to disassemble the keyboard. Remove all the screws you might find in the back, and release the back cover.
2) Then, remove the thin plastic layers thar are inside the keyboard.
3) then, put the cover on the back and turn the keyboard facing up, to put the layers over the keys to write with a permanent marker where the keys are, one for the upper layer, and one for the bottom layer.
Step 3: Finding Which Pins Works for Our Key
1) Take the upper plastic layer (it's glued to the bottom layer, you can use a Xacto knife to cut the small glue spot that puts the 2 layers together.
2) Put one of the multimeter probes at the brown spot, and then put the other probe in the first of the circuit track endings
3) Get the resistance reading in the multimeter (the one with the OHM symbol on it) , if you don't get any reading, move the probe to the next pin in the track endings, until you got some reading.
If you don't have a multimeter don't worry, just follow the track until the ends, just don't get lost because of the tiny lines =P
Once you find where the key ends, do the same procedure for the bottom layer of the keyboard
Step 4: Soldering the Cables in the Keyboard Microcontroller
Before soldering the cables, use the dremel tool to remove the black material over the tracks in the circuit, this will help the solder to stick to the circuit.
I will solder cables for the "Ctrl", "Alt", "Right arrow", "Left arrow" and "Scroll Lock" because I'm using this circuit for another project in the near future. But U just need to solder the cables for the scroll lock keys.
Step 5: Making the Foot Switch / Pedal
1) Cut a hole in the box
2) Remove the black switch of the button and screw down the yellow casing
3) Tighten the yellow button with the plastic black nut
4) Solder cable to the ends of the switch
5) Attach the switch again to the arcade button and close the box
Step 6: Solder the Foot Switch to the Keyboard Microcontroller
I used another old nokia cellphone box to keep the brains of the circuit to be used later in future projects.
Step 7: Programming the Scroll Lock Key to Hide All the Windows
1) Download the program from http://www.autohotkey.com/download/ download the "Install AutoHotKey" option.
2) Install the program, it's pretty straightforward
3) Then we have to program the code in a text file called minimize.ahk , you can find the file for downlad below, but in case you want an explanation of the code, here you have:
SetScrollLockState, AlwaysOff ------------ this will turn off the scroll lock LED light
ScrollLock:: --------- if you press the Scroll Lock key, the function will minimize all the windows
+ScrollLock:: -------- if you pres the Scroll Lock key, while holding the Shift key, all the windows will return to the screen
You can download the file below, and save it inside the AutoHotkey folder in you computer.
Step 8: Load the File Automatically
Just drag the shortcut to the "Startup" submenu under "Programs"...
Step 9: The Video of the Pedal
Step 10: Done!! Start Hiding Your Windows!!! =P
Once you reboot (or load the script by right clicking in the AutoHotKey icon in the taskbar) you will be able to hide ALL the windows with just the press of a pedal!!!
And, if you press the pedal while holding the shift key, all the windows will be restored.
Well, this is a very quick computer MOD, you can use another kind of pedals, or a nicer box, but the idea is to kep it very simple.
This is my first instructable, so please let me know what you think about it!!!
P.S. I have a video with the pedal working, but I don't know how to upload the videos, any help?