King of Key

Once, I recieved a Christmas card from a friend in Japan. It depicted the same avuncular, ruddy-cheeked Santa I’d always known and loved – but with a difference: this one was nailed to a crucifix. Japanese advance
King of Key is from the same school of visionary Japanese logic. The same geniuses who brought us Dance With i (see Reviews, October 1999) and the unforgettable Yes! i Hub have excelled again. While the card was an eye-popping amalgam of Christianity and popular Western culture, King of Keys borrows from themes of dentistry and IT vanity: it’s a diamond-studded gold tooth for your keyboard. It’s designed as a “home” key for the Wall Street PowerBook G3, and will fit no other Mac model. The home keys are the ones with nipples that are used by touch-typists to keep their bearings. Quite. Actually, King of Key isn’t real gold, just gold-coloured plastic – although it does house a 24-carat diamond that comes complete with its own authenticity certificate – in Japanese. This rock serves as the home key’s nipple. Because Macworld’s offices are next to the Hatton Garden jewellers district, we took the opportunity of having King of Key valued, just out of curiosity. When the goldsmith had stopped laughing, he declared its diamond to be worth a far-from-regal £10.

OUR VERDICT

When I fitted it to a sales colleague’s Wall Street, King of Key became the talk of her floor. And, in my two years on Macworld, no product has sparked as much banter among the editorial team as this humble trinket trinket. Sure, it’s an absurd square of plastic, housing a £10 stone that happens to cost £80. But, King of Key – we are your unworthy subjects.

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