Pseudonymous ergonomic keyboard enthusiast "Ashi" has brought a little classic IBM to a very modern Glove80 keyboard, adding a TrackPoint-style nubbin to provide pointing device capabilities to the keyboard in as unobtrusive a manner as possible.
"Muahhhahaha! They said it couldn't be done! They called me insane! But I will show them, I'll show them all! Behold the power of the TrackPoint-modded Glove80," Ashi jokes of the mod. "Okay, so it's a bit of a cheat and dirty hack, because see the cord on the right? It's there because the module is a separate wired USB HID. Glove does have GPIO connectors in both halves, but stock ZMK [firmware] doesn't support pointing devices yet, so I decided to keep them separate until firmware matures."
The idea of integrating a compact joystick-like pointing device, to be operated with a fingertip, between or within the vicinity of the keys of a keyboard dates back to 1984 and Ted Selker's work at the Xero Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) — but it would be IBM, not Xerox, which would bring the technology to market as the TrackPoint in 1992. MoErgo's Glove80, by contrast, only began reaching backers earlier this year — delivering on the company's promise for a fully-wireless, heavily-dished split ergonomic keyboard.
Ashi's creation combines the two in the easiest way possible — starting with the acquisition of a standalone USB TrackPoint-compatible pointing stick. "The shaft is a bit short for most keyboard projects," Ashi notes, "but perfect for this case. It wouldn't fit the palm rest as is, so I desoldered the module from the main PCB to reattach it with flexible wires — and trimmed the sides with a Dremel until everything fit."
While it took trial and error, and another TrackPoint-style board, to get the setup working, the result is impressive: a Glove80 which can be used exactly like the original, but with a subtle pointing stick for mouse-based control with minimal hand movement.
More information is available in Ashi's Reddit post.