Hardcore gamers know: keyboard controls can make the difference between life and death, epic loot and a wipe, and pwning and being pwned. SteelSeries is always looking for ways to help you suck less and win more, and at CES it showed off some prototype keyboard analysis software to make you even more l33t.
"Analysis software" doesn't sound like the most exciting thing to come out of a gaming peripheral company, but stick with us for a sec on this one. We all have different keyboard setups for different kinds of games: whether it's an MMO, FPS, RTS, or anything else, there are combinations of functions and keys that we think make us faster and more efficient. We think. SteelSeries has been working on some software, now in prototype stage, that can tell us for sure.
The prototype software in the picture above is an analytic statistics engine for gaming. It runs while you play your favorite games, and then generates a heat map of what keys you use the most. The really clever bit, though, is that it'll use the data that it collects to recommend changes in your keybindings. For example, in the picture above (showing stats from a FPS game), it looks like there's frequent switching between two weapons sets, using the 1 and 2 keys. That's fine, but it's off the home row, so the SteelSeries software might say, "hey, why not use the caps lock key to swap weapons sets instead, since it's closer to your home row and you never press it?"
This isn't just for gaming: you can keep the engine running while using all of your programs, from word processing to writing code to browsing the Internet. The results will probably surprise you, and might even make you a little (or a lot) more efficient at everything you do on your computer.
The stats engine is still a work in progress, but SteelSeries says that it should be available sometime in Q2, absolutely free for everyone with a SteelSeries keyboard.