Why We Should Stick to the QWERTY Keyboard

Pages: 3 (804 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Why We Should Stick To Qwerty

Computer Science 10

The Qwerty keyboard - named Qwerty because the letters q, w, e, r, t, y are arranged next to each other - has been the universal standard since the beginning of the 1890s. Since then, there have been many proposals by other keyboard makers to market products that would enable users to type faster. Other proposals put the most frequently used letters - dhiatensor - in the middle row.i Although these keyboards enable users to type far faster than the qwerty keyboard, they are rarely sold. There are several reasons for this. First, there is no need for the regular users to type any faster than at the current speed. Second, for the people whose job require fast typing, the new keyboards can lead to bigger health problems that develop from continuous typing. Third, and most importantly, standardization has led the qwerty keyboards to firmly hold the position as the keyboard.

There are major differences between the two types of keyboard users; the regular users and the other typists. The regular users are people who uses the keyboard for word processing, e-mailing, and internet; there is not much of a need for them to type extremely fast. They do not type mechanically but rather based on their thought, and thinking takes time. In other words, faster keyboards are irrelevant for them because they are not continuously typing. They need to think what they are going to write, one sentence one after another.

On the other hand, the typists whose job is simply to type, do so continuously. They also happen to be the major victims of repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) which is in large part caused by continuously stroking the keyboards. In an article about RSI, Huff explains the changes that the companies are undergoing to become more productive: Many work practices are changing with automation to increase productivity. These include fewer staff, heavier workloads, more task specialization, faster pacing of...
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