Thanks! It’s a vortex core. I brought it along in case I wanted to do any norns stuff that required it. I like it–the base is a nice aluminum and it has very simple industrial design/color scheme. I think it fits well next to the monome things both in terms of the look and feel, as well as the fact it is so tiny and portable–easy to pack and also easy to fit on a table if you have a crowded live setup.
I use it mainly with my teletype. I did use it for work and general computing to get used to it (which you’ll need to do, as a lot of the keys have two or three purposes that you access with the Fn and Fn1 keys).
As far as vortex goes, if you want something super compact, the core is the best, but they have 3 other sizes (+ number row (pok3r), + function row and arrows (race 3 – this would be my preference for general computing), and + numpad). It looks like their new tab series has usb-c connectors and includes both the primary color and greyscale accent keys, but unfortunately swaps out the nice looking aluminum base for plastic.
Tons of options for switches that have different feels. If you really want something aesthetically pleasing, check out ortholinear layouts (though I’m not sure how annoying they are to use in practice). There’s really a ton of options and ways to configure. Good luck!