one of the new ThinkPad conceptsHere’s to detachable keyboards for laptops!

Not only would they be good for users’ backs, necks, arms and wrists, but they might also make e-book reading easier. In a related vein, how about displays you can raise?

Those are among the concepts discussed–without mention of e-books–in a CNet interview with Arimasa Naitoh, father of the ThinkPad (via Slashdot).


  1. There was a product like this 4, 5 years ago! I can’t remember the name, but it was a laptop whose screen and keyboard were separate components.

    personally, for home ebook reading, i’d kind of like a portable display with a built-in trackball or other pointing device. wifi, bluetooth, wireless usb, the screen would be light and cheap (or as cheap as a small lcd-screen gets when you include the pointing device and batteries) and would give us that ‘curl up in bed” factor yet work off our desktops or laptops sitting on a table across the room.

    it would have the added boost of being able to control a media computer like the Mac mini — like a super remote.

  2. I recall when the IBM PCjr first shipped in 1984, and it had a detached wireless infrared keyboard referred to as a “freeboard”. The Wikipedia entry says “the wireless functionality did not work as well as expected; in practice, range only extended to about two or three feet from the machine, and batteries drained very quickly.”

    Of course, the IBM PCjr was not a laptop as envisioned above, and some technologies require years to mature. The “chiclet” style keyboard of the PCjr was rejected and the model largely failed.