What do you do when you’re a beer company sponsoring a social media event? Find a way to speak to both beer and communication enthusiasts simultaneously. And what better way to connect the two than to get social media lovers to communicate through a keyboard made of beer? For the 2012 Webstock Conference, the largest blogging and social media conference in Romania, sponsor Staropramen, a Prague-based brewer, offered attendees the chance to win a trip to the Czech capital through a traditional email sign-up; only, the input method was a bit more entertaining than at the typical conference.
Created in partnership with Robofun Create, a Romanian company specializing ‘in creating cool on-demand technology products,’ the Beer-Cans Keyboard offered Staropramen a way to showcase their product while increasing engagement at the conference. Forty-four cans were used to assemble the keyboard, which was connected to a large wall-mounted plasma screen. When people pressed the cans to enter their email addresses for the trip giveaway, their keystrokes showed up on screen just as if they were typing on a regular computer. The beer cans were connected to a touch-capacitive based controlled by an Arduino, linked to the display through a Raspberry Pi board.
While typing was slow-going on the keyboard, it was highly effective. According to Robofun Create, every single conference attendee tried the keyboard and entered the contest. Watch a video of the Beer-Cans Keyboard in action below: