Date: Monday, February 1st, 1999, 00:00
One annoyance with the Lombard is its USB implementation. What is supposed to be a feature, turns out to be an incredible pain. Imagine something as basic as starting up your PowerBook and expecting to use an external USB keyboard and USB mouse, and either or both don’t work. In the few short days that I have my Lombard (four to be exact) the USB ports have turned into more of a liability than a feature.
Yesterday, my USB Contour UniMouse was not recognized by Lombard, regardless of how many times I restarted. Today my MacAlly iKey USB keyboard was possessed, typing random hieroglyphics instead of the keys that I was actually typing. Keyboard shenanigans combined with dozens of QuickKey macros assigned to several function keys are a bad thing. Again, several (hard, soft and cold) restarts did nothing.
Thankfully there is the iMate from Griffin Technology, I don’t know what I would have done without it today. I am using two: one goes to my Apple Studio Display 15 (ADB), to which I have connected a standard Apple Design (ADB) keyboard and a Kensington two-button (ADB) mouse, the other is connecting Lombard to power my Bird Electron G Turbo Intercooler stand, which draws power from the ADB port.
Reader Andrew Rodney writes about another Lombard/USB snafu: its incompatibility with some ADB hardware key dongles:
I suspect there’s something different about the USB implementation on Lombard. I just purchased a Griffin USB to ADB adapter so I can use a dongle for some software I use. The dongle simply can’t be seen. What’s odd is the dongle and iMate from Griffin work just fine on my iMac! I called Griffin and they don’t know what the issues are yet (they just got a Lombard) but they are aware of some problems with the new Powerbook and the adapter with some devices. I’ve got their USB extension running on both machines so I suspect it’s a hardware issue on the Lombard. I should point out that the iMate does work fine on the Lombard with a standard ADB mouse. But the Dongle doesn’t work at all. I hope to test this with the collection of other dongles I have back at my office.