This is my second attempt to build a real working version of a cyberdeck inspired by the machines used in the cyberpunk settings of Shadowrun and William Gibson’s Sprawl novels. In those stories cyberdecks were portable computers hackers used to jack into cyberspace with a direct neural connection, cutting ICE and stealing data for the highest bidder. I don’t have a neural interface, so I’m making do with a set of video glasses.
The case for this project came from a dead Commodore 64c. It was the right size and shape, and its style perfectly matched the 80’s aesthetic common to cyberpunk. The original keyboard was replaced with a modern keyboard/trackpad combo with 3 color backlit keys, and a USB hub slotted where the function keys once were. Inside was an overclocked Raspberry Pi 3 with a cooling fan powered by a 10,000 mAh USB battery.
For video I gave it a VGA output for either an external monitor or video glasses, but if you don’t have either of those handy there’s also a 5" LCD that slides out of the back and pivots towards the user on a pair of friction hinges. Finally, I wanted some styling to make it look like a machine that’s seen some action on the mean streets of Night City. I painted it red, added a shoulder strap, and had custom stickers printed to badge it and add some flavor.