This very cool
Russian-made smart keyboard prototype - with embedded OLED screens in each key capable of changing on-the-fly, depending on OS, language, and program - has been making the rounds of the gadget news sites lately. Even more fascinating, though, is the designer, one Artemy Lebedev, and his numerous essays on design.
For instance, the Russian visual experience, as it pertains to industrial designers, is interestingly different from that of the west. Lebedev details the development of the Russian typewriter layout
and telephone system,
both parallel but slightly askew to the interfaces of both as we know them. But there's also some more general, universal musings, like on set design and presidential addresses,
neat particularly in demonstrating how much more sinister Putin has made the visual language of the Russian presidency. (Also amusing: "The President’s hands move so as to get across a message of something in between 'it’s an honest-to-goodness truth, folks' and 'I’ll strangle ye all.'" Hey, you say it like it's a bad thing...)
And then, there's the most entertainingly detailed April Fools' hoax
I've seen in a while, on the purported Cyrillic original copy of the Declaration of Independence. (!)
Gently satiric but seemingly-earnest affection for that most significant of documents, and
a brilliant sense of design? Someone get this man a visa and VC funding, now.