Raspberry Pi keyboard and trackpad


FIrst I would like to say that Raspberry Pi is an awsome little machine which is capable of alot of nice stuff.

Amongst others it runs a modified version of Debian called Raspbian. This is a nice operating system for beginners as it has a nice package handling system with alot of activity in the repository.

The other day i saw some interesting posts and homepages concerning FreeBSD on the Raspberry Pi, FreeBSD itself is a small yet expandable operating system. I like and use FreeBSD mostly because of its firewall and server software. 

Alright lets get to the point!

I have a desk which is cramped with projects and various items needed for various tasks, this means i have a limited amount of space to use for keyboards and mice. Today I came across an old Macbook (much like this one) and as I wanted to find out more about the hardware I booted Parted Magic. In Parted Magic there is a command called lsusb which tells us what devices are connected by USB. And there was an Apple Trackpad and an Apple keyboard, I shut the computer off and started to dissect it. Once the top case (which the keyboard and trackpad is mounted in) was removed i noticed a ribbon cable which went under a piece of plastic.

I removed the plastic and saw a little curcuit with a component called "cy8c24994-2". After a quick visit to my favorite friend i found its datasheet. Whats interesting here is that the component have a usb connection, with a little soldering it can be connected to a USB-port and maybe used.

The pins in this picture thats interesting are pins 20-23.

After making it look like this and connecting the other ends to a harvested usb cabel i was able to see a nice surprise when connected to a computer. Its not only the trackpad that is available over this connection but also the keyboard! Bingo!


As this design isnt the optimal one it gives a very nice trackpad and a comfortable keyboard all in one piece.