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Research articles on the importance of key sizes and orientation?

Research articles on the importance of key sizes and orientation?

Looking at different standalone or notebook keyboards, you'll notice a difference in key sizes and orientation. For some it's not so critical, while for others, like the Enter (Return) key, it is. Some versions are narrow (vertical) and others wide (horizontal).

Asked by: Guest | Views: 59
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Guest [Entry]

"There are several aspects involved with designing a keyboard:

They won't share any internal studies since that would allow any company to copy their ""concepts"" - so if there are any studies they will be done by 3rd parties like universities.
Fitts's Law has some say in how large keys will have to be, since the size of the key and the distance you have to travel towards it determine how long it will take you. This off course influences your typing speed.

The overall size of the keys is also related to the amount of words typed per minute, according to this 'old' study from 1992 (pdf). The larger the keys, the more words per minute.
Error rate will most likely also have some importance, there will be an optimal key size (and layout) where 'Average Joe' will make the least errors while typing
Tradition, the keyboards have always been made a certain way and they just keep doing it, since nobody complains (loud enough). But also because some legacy keyboards needed Enter or Backspace more (or less), so they changed the key size to the importance of the key.
Manufacturing, changing your keyboard layout means you have to make new molds and everything. Which off course is a costly matter, so they probably prefer sticking with what they have.

Too bad you can't download most of the journals, unless you're at a university with access to them. Though I hope this already explains it a bit ;-)"