Datamancer

According to their website, Datamancer sells “modern heirlooms.”

According to client reviews, they sell “functional art.”

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Neither description could be more accurate, but neither fully encapsulates the creations developed by this inspired company.

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Richard R. Nagy

When Richard R. Nagy, who past away last November, first turned his various skills as a craftsman, techie, and antique restorer to build custom computer equipment, he probably didn’t realize how much people would love the things he made. However, in the age of plastic and polymer contraptions built to last a day, Nagy’s excellent craftsmanship turned a few heads. As did his care for detail. Every product has a story built into it, suggested by the name each accessory or suite claims (Aviator, Diviner, Machinist, etc.). People notice that kind of work, and a lot of people noticed Datamancer, Nagy’s new company.

Datamancer products have appeared in everything from Vanity Fair and PC World to Newsweek and The Independent. And there’s always something new. In addition to a supply of regular items available for sale on the website, Datamancer still accepts custom orders, so the builders are never short of a challenge, and the company is constantly evolving.

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Me: You’ve reimagined some basic pieces of tech (e.g. keyboards and monitors) many, many times. Each is so different. How do you keep developing new concepts without burning out?

Datamancer: “The intention of the original artist, Richard R. Nagy, was to make a full PC suite in the artistic style of significant decades in history. The first being the Victorian era. Really though it’s just selecting an artistic style that I like, and adapting it to modern technology in some way.”

Me: With all the technology in the world, what drew you to working with personal computers?

Datamancer: “When the first Datamancer keyboard was made, personal computers were the best tech out there. We have plans to expand to newer technology, but as tech progresses, it gets harder and harder to modify.”

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Me: What have you learned since you first started building?

Datamancer: “When we first started building we had no idea what we were doing. I suppose the most important thing is to keep everything organized. It is very easy to get lost underneath messes upon messes, especially since we have so many projects going at the same time. Organization is key.”

Me: What has been your biggest challenge creatively? If you had unlimited funds, what would you choose build?

Datamancer: “Lack of funding. There are so many things I want to do but I don’t have the money to do them. I think if I had unlimited funds I would have a complete PC suite available in every artistic style I could think of. We would also do some really cool mods for phones and things like that.”

DatamancerDatamancer products range from $500 to over $2,000. However, these products are built to last a lifetime – not just a few years. Datamancer takes the “heirloom” part of its slogan very seriously. If working via your own piece of functional art appeals to you, be sure to check out Datamancer’s website.

If this is an investment you can’t afford (yet), be sure to enjoy the eye candy while you wait. Datamancer.com shares many beautiful images of their products, and they also hold Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter accounts for you to follow.

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