A passionate DIY project by artist and tech tinkerer RA has brought about a fully-fledged portable Cyberdeck. If you’ve read William Gibson’s Neuromancer novels or played the Shadowrun series of excellent tactical RPGs, you’ve used a cyberdeck to navigate and hack the Matrix, a virtual representation of the Internet. Sadly, the world doesn’t have a Matrix you can hack into just yet – but the Cyberdek RA01 leans more towards the nostalgia and giddiness of pure sci-fi than actual usability.
The Cyberdeck RA01 follows cyberpunk principles in that it is a fully stand-alone laptop: there is an 8.8-inch ultra-wide IPS display with 1920 x 480 resolution, allowing users to users to explore the custom Raspbian operating system!) running on the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B inside (which automatically means support for HDMI, Ethernet and USB 3.0). A pair of 18650 batteries builds on the Cyberdeck’s portability, but so does the carrying strap and handle for any serious Matrix operation.
The Cyberdeck parts are housed in a Commodore C64C case that the creator repurposed; it added a 40% Vortex keyboard, a PS4 controller joystick serving as a mouse input, a button for volume control, speakers and even creating a new typeface just for the style credits. additional. RA says this project isn’t meant to be a productivity machine – it’s more an exercise in originality and creative freedom. We would say he succeeded. And if you want to know more about the project and even customize your own, RA has a guide to find out how the Cyberdeck RA01 was made. Time to get down to business and play Shadowrun or the next one Gamedec.