Introduction: Tactile Keyboard Hack

About: I'm a video editor by trade but enjoy making all kinds of things to entertain myself and others.

I wanted the ability to identify some of my keyboard keys by touch alone. I use the TAB, SHIFT, CTRL, ALT and ESC keys very often when working in blender 3d suite. The steelseries gaming keyboard I use is excellent however being designed for gaming there are only raised bumps on the home keys F, J and the W key. This instructable is my super simple and nondestructive solution for a tactile keyboard hack.

Step 1: Materials and Symbolism

I decided to use pieces of craft foam with cut out symbols to fit the shape. The foam pieces would be affixed using scotch 3M reusable mounting tabs which would also be cut to size.

The symbols I ended up using were meant to make visual sense but also to be different enough from each other to be identifiable by touch alone.

Step 2: Measure Twice and Slice

I made measurements of my key sizes and cut pieces of foam to match. Then I cut the symbols out of those pieces. Using a sharp knife makes all the difference.

Step 3: Adhesion and Results

To adhere the foam to the keys I used Scotch 3M reusable mounting tabs 1"x1" that I cut to size. I used these tabs so that I can remove the foam with little mess if I want to. A possibly more easily accessible option would be to use double sided tape however this would be harder to remove. The gaps in the foam were sticky immediately after I applied the mounting tabs but have lost their tack quickly and now function very well. I can easily tell which keys my fingers are on now and already feel like I have increased my productivity due to this super simple hack. Some possible improvements would be to cut the edges of the foam with pattern cutting scissors, this would make key identification faster by not having to find the center of the key each time.