Cherry Electrical Products has made a splash into the washable keyboard market with its J84-2800 Series.

This keyboard is intended mainly for hospitals and schools, where disease control is critical, especially in operating rooms and intensive care centres.

Peripheral manufacturers have recently started to tout washable keyboards and mice in the wake of studies showing places where people put their fingers tend to get really really dirty. The Cherry J-84-28000 series includes a “clean” key that disables other key functions so you don’t end up accidently hitting a key while you’re cleaning it.

So, rather than spend a fortune hiring someone to spend hours cleaning all the nooks and crannies in your keyboards, why not just get something you can hose down with as much bleach as you want?


Ever wonder what those other folks on a boring conference call look like? Iotum, which bills itself as a voice 2.0 company, last month announced it’s beta testing a visual conference call system.

Dubbed Calliflower, the product lets users see the names and photos of people participating in the call.

For users who want to talk to other participants without interrupting the conference, Calliflower includes a group chat feature, which allows conversations before, during and after a conference. Users can also share handouts and links. It also lets moderators record the call in MP3 format. Unless the price of oil drops unexpectedly, this may be a better way of collaborating with users outside of the office, without paying through the nose for telepresence.

Aventiv Noma Desk 2.4

Belgian vendor Aventiv has a product that lets remote users collaborate without using VPNs. Noma Desk 2.4 is a virtual file server that lets employees manage, edit and share files through their browsers.

Noma Desk also works offline, allowing users to manage, edit, and share files from their desktop

With Noma Desk 2.4, currently in beta testing, Aventiv claims the files can be encrypted, and no additional hardware is required. Designed for independent teams of two to 20 users, version 2.4 boasts faster performance and better access for mobile users. It can also be combined with e-mail contacts from Outlook, Google or Yahoo.

If you’re easily confused by endless e-mail chains and umpteen versions of the same document, this might be a product worth considering.

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