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Not to be confused with keyboard computer.



">Play media Typing on a pc keyboard
Backlit keyboard
Lenovo's ThinkPad compact keyboard
In computing, a pc keyboard is a typewriter-style device[1] which makes use of an association of buttons or keys to behave as mechanical levers or electronic switches. Following the decline of punch cards and paper tape, interplay by way of teleprinter-style keyboards grew to become the principle input method for computers.

Keyboard keys (buttons) sometimes have characters engraved o
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r printed on them,[2] and every press of a key sometimes corresponds to a single written symbol. However, producing some symbols might require urgent and holding a number of keys concurrently or in sequence.[3] While most keyboard keys produce letters, numbers or indicators (characters), different keys or simultaneous key presses can produce actions or execute pc instructions.

In regular utilization, the keyboard is used as a text entry interface for typing textual content and numbers right into a word processor, text editor or some other program. In a contemporary pc, the interpretation of key presses is mostly left to the software program. A pc keyboard distinguishes every bodily key from each different key and stories all key presses to the controlling software program. Keyboards are additionally used for pc gaming — both common keyboards or keyboards with particular gaming options, which may expedite often used keystroke mixtures. A keyboard can be used to present instructions to the working system of a pc, corresponding to Windows' Control-Alt-Delete mixture, which brings up the system safety choices screens. A command-line interface is a kind of user interface navigated totally utilizing a keyboard, or another related system that does the job of 1.


Contents


1 History
2 Keyboard types

2.1 Standard
2.2 Laptop-size
2.3 Flexible keyboards
2.4 Handheld
2.5 Thumb-sized
2.6 Multifunctional


3 Non-standard layout and special-use types

3.1 Chorded
3.2 Software
3.3 Projection
3.4 Optical keyboard technology


4 Layout

4.1 Alphabetic
4.2 Key types

4.2.1 Alphanumeric
4.2.2 Modifier keys
4.2.3 Cursor keys
4.2.4 System commands

4.2.4.1 Break key
4.2.4.2 Escape key
4.2.4.3 Enter key
4.2.4.4 Shift key
4.2.4.5 Menu key


4.2.5 Miscellaneous


4.3 Numeric keys

4.3.1 Multiple layouts
4.3.2 Layout changing software




5 Illumination
6 Technology

6.1 Key switches
6.2 Control processor
6.3 Connection types


7 Alternative text-entering methods
8 Other issues

8.1 Keystroke logging
8.2 Physical injury
8.3 Pathogen transmission


9 See also
10 References
11 External links



History

While typewriters are the definitive ancestor of all key-based textual content entry units, the pc keyboard as a tool for electromechanical information entry and communication derives largely from the utility of two units: teleprinters (or teletypes) and keypunches. It was via such units that fashionable pc keyboards inherited their layouts.

As early because the 1870s, teleprinter-like units have been used to concurrently sort and transmit stock market textual content information from the keyboard throughout telegraph strains to stock ticker machines to be instantly copied and displayed onto ticker tape.[4] The teleprinter, in its extra modern type, was developed from 1907 to 1910 by American mechanical engineer Charles Krum and his son Howard, with early contributions by electrical engineer Frank Pearne. Earlier fashions have been developed individually by people corresponding to Royal Earl House and Frederick G. Creed.

Earlier, Herman Hollerith developed the primary keypunch units, which quickly advanced to incorporate keys for textual content and quantity entry akin to regular typewriters by the 1930s.[5]

The keyboard on the teleprinter performed a powerful function in point-to-point and point-to-multipoint communication for a lot of the 20th century, whereas the keyboard on the keypunch system performed a powerful function in information entry and storage for simply as lengthy. The improvement of the earliest computer systems included electrical typewriter keyboards: the event of the ENIAC pc included a keypunch system as each the enter and paper-based output system, whereas the BINAC pc additionally made use of an electromechanically managed typewriter for each information entry onto magnetic tape (as an alternative of paper) and information output.[6]

The keyboard remained the first, most built-in pc peripheral nicely into the period of non-public computing till the introduction of the mouse as a client system in 1984. By this time, text-only person interfaces with sparse graphics gave approach to comparatively graphics-rich icons on screen.[7] However, keyboards stay central to human-computer interplay to the current, whilst cell private computing units corresponding to smartphones and tablets adapt the keyboard as an non-compulsory digital, touchscreen-based means of knowledge entry.





Keyboard sorts

One issue figuring out the scale of a keyboard is the presence of duplicate keys, corresponding to a separate numeric keyboard, for comfort.

Further the keyboard dimension will depend on the extent to which a system is used the place a single motion is produced by a mix of subsequent or simultaneous keystrokes (with modifier keys), or a number of urgent of a single key. A keyboard with few keys known as a keypad.

Another issue figuring out the scale of a keyboard is the scale and spacing of the keys. Reduction is proscribed by the sensible consideration that the keys have to be massive sufficient to be simply pressed by fingers. Alternatively a instrument is used for urgent small keys.


Standard

Standard alphanumeric keyboards have keys which are on three-quarter inch facilities (0.750 inches, 19.05 mm)[citation needed], and have a key journey of at the least 0.150 inches (3.81 mm). Desktop pc keyboards, such because the 101-key US conventional keyboards or the 104-key Windows keyboards, embody alphabetic characters, punctuation symbols, numbers and a wide range of function keys. The internationally widespread 102/104 key keyboards have a smaller left shift key and a further key with some extra symbols between that and the letter to its proper (often Z or Y). Also the enter key is often formed otherwise. Computer keyboards are much like electric-typewriter keyboards however include extra keys, such because the command or Windows keys. There is not any customary pc keyboard, though many producers imitate the keyboard of PCs. There are literally three completely different PC keyboards: the unique PC keyboard with 84 keys, the AT keyboard additionally with 84 keys and the improved keyboard with 101 keys. The three differ considerably within the placement of operate keys, the management keys, the return key, and the shift key.


Laptop-size

Keyboards on laptops often have a shorter journey distance and a lowered set of keys.
Keyboards on laptops and notebook computers often have a shorter journey distance for the keystroke, shorter over journey distance, and a lowered set of keys. They might not have a numeric keypad, and the operate keys could also be positioned in places that differ from their placement on a typical, full-sized keyboard. The swap mechanism for a laptop computer keyboard is extra prone to be a scissor swap than a rubber dome; that is reverse the development for full-size keyboards.


Flexible keyboards

Flexible keyboards are a junction between regular sort and laptop computer sort keyboards: regular from the total association of keys, and laptop computer from the quick key distance. Additionally, the flexibleness permits the person to fold/roll the keyboard for higher storage and switch. However, for typing the keyboard have to be resting on a tough floor. The overwhelming majority[citation needed] of versatile keyboards out there are comprised of silicone; this materials makes them water- and dust-proof. This could also be helpful in hospitals[citation needed] the place keyboards are subjected to frequent washing.


Handheld

An AlphaGrip handheld keyboard
Handheld ergonomic keyboards[8][9] are designed to be held like a recreation controller, and can be utilized as such, as an alternative of laid out flat on high of a desk floor. Typically handheld keyboards maintain all of the alphanumeric keys and symbols that a typical keyboard would have, but solely be accessed by urgent two units of keys directly; one performing as a operate key much like a 'Shift' key that will enable for capital letters on a typical keyboard.[10] Handheld keyboards enable the person the flexibility to maneuver round a room or to lean again on a chair whereas additionally having the ability to sort in entrance or away from the pc.[11] Some variations of handheld ergonomic keyboards additionally embody a trackball mouse that enable mouse motion and typing included in a single handheld system.[12]


Thumb-sized

Smaller exterior keyboards have been launched for units and not using a built-in keyboard, corresponding to PDAs, and smartphones. Small keyboards are additionally helpful the place there's a restricted workspace.[13]

A thumb keyboard (thumb board) is utilized in some private digital assistants such because the Palm Treo and BlackBerry and a few Ultra-Mobile PCs such because the OQO.

Numeric keyboards include solely numbers, mathematical symbols for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, a decimal level, and a number of other operate keys. They are sometimes used to facilitate information entry with smaller keyboards that wouldn't have a numeric keypad, generally these of laptop computer computer systems.[14] These keys are collectively often known as a numeric pad, numeric keys, or a numeric keypad, and it could encompass the next varieties of keys: Arithmetic operators, numbers, arrow keys, Navigation keys, Num Lock and Enter key.


Multifunctional

Multifunction keyboard with LCD operate keys
Multifunctional keyboards present extra operate past the usual keyboard. Many are programmable, configurable pc keyboards and a few management a number of PCs, workstations (incl. SUN) and different data sources (incl. Thomson Reuters FXT/Eikon, Bloomberg, EBS, and so forth.) often in multi-screen work environments. Users have extra key capabilities in addition to the usual capabilities and might sometimes use a single keyboard and mouse to entry a number of sources.


Multifunction keyboard with contact
Multifunctional keyboards might characteristic customised keypads, totally programmable operate or tender keys for macros/pre-sets, biometric or smart card readers, trackballs, and so forth. New technology multifunctional keyboards characteristic a touchscreen show to stream video, management audio visible media and alarms, execute utility inputs, configure particular person desktop environments, and so forth. Multifunctional keyboards might also allow customers to share entry to PCs and different data sources. Multiple interfaces (serial, USB, audio, Ethernet, and so forth.) are used to combine exterior units. Some multifunctional keyboards are additionally used to instantly and intuitively management video partitions.

Common environments for multifunctional keyboards are advanced, high-performance workplaces for financial traders and control room operators (emergency companies, safety, air visitors administration; trade, utilities administration, and so forth.).


Non-standard format and special-use sorts

Chorded

Main article: Chorded keyboard
While different keyboards usually affiliate one motion with every key, chorded keyboards affiliate actions with mixtures of key presses. Since there are various mixtures obtainable, chorded keyboards can successfully produce extra actions on a board with fewer keys. Court reporters' stenotype machines use chorded keyboards to allow them to enter textual content a lot sooner by typing a syllable with every stroke as an alternative of 1 letter at a time. The quickest typists (as of 2007) use a stenograph, a sort of chorded keyboard utilized by most courtroom reporters and closed-caption reporters. Some chorded keyboards are additionally made to be used in conditions the place fewer keys are preferable, corresponding to on units that can be utilized with just one hand, and on small cell units that do not have room for bigger keyboards. Chorded keyboards are much less fascinating in lots of instances as a result of it often takes follow and memorization of the mixtures to turn out to be proficient.


Software

Software keyboards or on-screen keyboards typically take the type of pc applications that show a picture of a keyboard on the display. Another enter system corresponding to a mouse or a touchscreen can be utilized to function every digital key to enter textual content. Software keyboards have turn out to be highly regarded in touchscreen enabled cell telephones, as a result of extra price and area necessities of different varieties of hardware keyboards. Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, and a few types of GNU/Linux embody on-screen keyboards that may be managed with the mouse. In software program keyboards, the mouse needs to be maneuvered onto the on-screen letters given by the software program. On the clicking of a letter, the software program writes the respective letter on the respective spot.


Projection

Projection keyboards venture a picture of keys, often with a laser, onto a flat floor. The system then makes use of a digital camera or infrared sensor to "watch" the place the person's fingers transfer, and can depend a key as being pressed when it "sees" the person's finger contact the projected picture. Projection keyboards can simulate a full dimension keyboard from a really small projector. Because the "keys" are merely projected photographs, they can't be felt when pressed. Users of projected keyboards typically expertise elevated discomfort of their fingertips due to the shortage of "give" when typing. A flat, non-reflective floor can be required for the keys to be projected. Most projection keyboards are made to be used with PDAs and smartphones attributable to their small type issue.


Optical keyboard expertise

Further data: Keyboard technology
Also often known as photo-optical keyboard, mild responsive keyboard, photo-electric keyboard and optical key actuation detection expertise.

An optical keyboard expertise[15] makes use of light emitting devices and photo sensors to optically detect actuated keys. Most generally the emitters and sensors are situated within the perimeter, mounted on a small PCB. The light is directed back and forth of the keyboard inside and it could solely be blocked by the actuated keys. Most optical keyboards[16] require at the least 2 beams (mostly vertical beam and horizontal beam) to find out the actuated key. Some optical keyboards use a particular key construction that blocks the sunshine in a sure sample, permitting just one beam per row of keys (mostly horizontal beam).


Layout

Alphabetic

Main article: Keyboard layout
The 104-key PC US English QWERTY keyboard format advanced from the usual typewriter keyboard, with additional keys for computing.
The Dvorak Simplified Keyboard format arranges keys in order that often used keys are best to press, which reduces muscle fatigue when typing widespread English.
There are quite a lot of completely different preparations of alphabetic, numeric, and punctuation symbols on keys. These completely different keyboard layouts come up primarily as a result of completely different folks want easy accessibility to completely different symbols, both as a result of they're inputting textual content in several languages, or as a result of they want a specialised format for arithmetic, accounting, computer programming, or different functions. The United States keyboard layout is used as default within the at present hottest working techniques: Windows,[17] Mac OS X[18] and Linux.[19][20] The widespread QWERTY-based format was designed early within the period of mechanical typewriters, so its ergonomics have been compromised to permit for the mechanical limitations of the typewriter.

As the letter-keys have been connected to levers that wanted to maneuver freely, inventor Christopher Sholes developed the QWERTY format to cut back the probability of jamming. With the arrival of computer systems, lever jams are not a difficulty, however however, QWERTY layouts have been adopted for digital keyboards as a result of they have been broadly used. Alternative layouts such because the Dvorak Simplified Keyboard usually are not in widespread use.

The QWERTZ format is broadly utilized in Germany and far of Central Europe. The principal distinction between it and QWERTY is that Y and Z are swapped, and most particular characters corresponding to brackets are changed by diacritical characters.

Another scenario takes place with "nationwide" layouts. Keyboards designed for typing in Spanish have some characters shifted, to launch the area for Ñ ñ; equally, these for Portuguese, French and different European languages might have a particular key for the character Ç ç. The AZERTY format is utilized in France, Belgium and a few neighbouring international locations. It differs from the QWERTY format in that the A and Q are swapped, the Z and W are swapped, and the M is moved from the fitting of N to the fitting of L (the place colon/semicolon is on a US keyboard). The digits Zero to 9 are on the identical keys, however to be typed the shift key have to be pressed. The unshifted positions are used for accented characters.

Keyboards in lots of elements of Asia might have particular keys to modify between the Latin character set and a very completely different typing system. Japanese format keyboards will be switched between varied Japanese enter strategies and the Latin alphabet by signaling the working system's enter interpreter of the change, and a few working techniques (specifically the Windows household) interpret the character "" as "¥" for show functions with out altering the bytecode which has led some keyboard makers to mark "" as "¥" or each. In the Arab world, keyboards can typically be switched between Arabic and Latin characters.

In bilingual areas of Canada and within the French-speaking province of Québec, keyboards can typically be switched between an English and a French-language keyboard; whereas each keyboards share the identical QWERTY alphabetic format, the French-language keyboard allows the person to sort accented vowels corresponding to "é" or "à" with a single keystroke. Using keyboards for different languages results in a battle: the picture on the important thing doesn't correspond to the character. In such instances, every new language might require a further label on the keys, as a result of the usual keyboard layouts don't share even related characters of various languages (see the instance within the determine above).


Key sorts

Alphanumeric
A Hebrew keyboard lets the person sort in each Hebrew and the Latin alphabet.
A Greek keyboard lets the person sort in each Greek and the Latin alphabet (MacBook Pro).
The Control, Windows, and Alt keys are essential modifier keys.
A Space-cadet keyboard has many modifier keys.
Alphabetical, numeric, and punctuation keys are utilized in the identical vogue as a typewriter keyboard to enter their respective image right into a phrase processing program, textual content editor, information spreadsheet, or different program. Many of those keys will produce completely different symbols when modifier keys or shift keys are pressed. The alphabetic characters turn out to be uppercase when the shift key or Caps Lock secret's depressed. The numeric characters turn out to be symbols or punctuation marks when the shift secret's depressed. The alphabetical, numeric, and punctuation keys may also produce other capabilities when they're pressed concurrently some modifier keys.
The Space bar is a horizontal bar within the lowermost row, which is considerably wider than different keys. Like the alphanumeric characters, additionally it is descended from the mechanical typewriter. Its principal goal is to enter the area between phrases throughout typing. It is massive sufficient so that a thumb from both hand can use it simply. Depending on the working system, when the area bar is used with a modifier key such because the management key, it could have capabilities corresponding to resizing or closing the present window, half-spacing, or backspacing. In pc video games and different purposes the important thing has myriad makes use of along with its regular goal in typing, corresponding to leaping and including marks to verify bins. In sure applications for playback of digital video, the area bar is used for pausing and resuming the playback.


Modifier keys
Modifier keys are particular keys that modify the traditional motion of one other key, when the 2 are pressed together. For instance, Alt+F4 in Microsoft Windows will shut this system in an active window. In distinction, urgent simply F4 will most likely do nothing, until assigned a selected operate in a selected program. By themselves, modifier keys often do nothing.
The most generally used modifier keys embody the Control key, Shift key and the Alt key. The AltGr key is used to entry extra symbols for keys which have three symbols printed on them. On the Macintosh and Apple keyboards, the modifier keys are the Option key and Command key, respectively. On MIT pc keyboards, the Meta key is used as a modifier and for Windows keyboards, there's a Windows key. Compact keyboard layouts typically use a Fn key. "Dead keys" enable placement of a diacritic mark, corresponding to an accent, on the next letter (e.g., the Compose key).
The Enter/Return key sometimes causes a command line, window type or dialog field to function its default operate, which is often to complete an "entry" and start the specified course of. In phrase processing purposes, urgent the enter key ends a paragraph and begins a brand new one.


Cursor keys
Navigation keys or cursor keys embody a wide range of keys which transfer the cursor to completely different positions on the display.[21] Arrow keys are programmed to maneuver the cursor in a specified path; web page scroll keys, such because the Page Up and Page Down keys, scroll the web page up and down. The Home key is used to return the cursor to the start of the road the place the cursor is situated; the End key places the cursor on the finish of the road. The Tab key advances the cursor to the subsequent tab cease.
The Insert key is especially used to modify between overtype mode, during which the cursor overwrites any textual content that's current on and after its present location, and insert mode, the place the cursor inserts a personality at its present place, forcing all characters previous it one place additional. The Delete key discards the character forward of the cursor's place, transferring all following characters one place "again" in the direction of the freed place. On many pocket book pc keyboards the important thing labeled Delete (typically Delete and Backspace are printed on the identical key) serves the identical goal as a Backspace key. The Backspace key deletes the previous character.
Lock keys lock a part of a keyboard, relying on the settings chosen. The lock keys are scattered across the keyboard. Most kinds of keyboards have three LEDs indicating which locks are enabled, within the higher proper nook above the numeric pad. The lock keys embody Scroll lock, Num lock (which permits using the numeric keypad), and Caps lock.[22]


System instructions
4800-52 mainframe / dumb terminal keyboard, circa mid 1980s. Note the obscure configuration of modifier and arrow keys, line feed key, break key, clean keys, and repeat key.
The SysRq and Print screen instructions typically share the identical key. SysRq was utilized in earlier computer systems as a "panic" button to get well from crashes (and it's nonetheless used on this sense to some extent by the Linux kernel; see Magic SysRq key). The Print display command used to seize all the display and ship it to the printer, however within the current it often places a screenshot within the clipboard.


Break key
The Break key/Pause key not has a well-defined goal. Its origins return to teleprinter customers, who needed a key that will briefly interrupt the communications line. The Break key can be utilized by software program in a number of alternative ways, corresponding to to modify between a number of login classes, to terminate a program, or to interrupt a modem connection.
In programming, particularly outdated DOS-style BASIC, Pascal and C, Break is used (along with Ctrl) to cease program execution. In addition to this, Linux and variants, in addition to many DOS applications, deal with this mix the identical as Ctrl+C. On fashionable keyboards, the break secret's often labeled Pause/Break. In most Windows environments, the important thing mixture Windows key+Pause brings up the system properties.


Escape key
The Escape key (typically abbreviated Esc) was traditionally used to provoke an escape sequence. As most pc customers not are involved with the main points of controlling their pc's peripherals, the duty for which the escape sequences have been initially designed, the escape key was appropriated by utility programmers, most frequently to "escape" or again out of a mistaken command. This use continues as we speak within the widespread use of escape as a shortcut in dialog bins for No, Quit, Exit, Cancel, or Abort. Another widespread utility as we speak of the Esc key to set off the Stop button in lots of internet browsers.

On machines working Microsoft Windows, previous to the implementation of the Windows key on keyboards, the everyday follow for invoking the "begin" button was to carry down the management key and press escape. This course of nonetheless works in Windows 95, 98, Me, NT 4, 2000, XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 10.


Enter key
The Enter secret's situated: One within the alphanumeric keys and the opposite one is within the numeric keys. When one labored one thing on their pc and needed to do one thing with their work, urgent the enter key would do the command they ordered. Another operate is to create an area for subsequent paragraph. When one typed and completed typing a paragraph they usually needed to have a second paragraph, they might press enter and it could do spacing.


Shift key
Shift key: when one presses shift and a letter, it's going to capitalize the letter pressed with the shift key. Another use is to sort extra symbols than seem like obtainable, as an illustration the apostrophe secret's accompanied with a citation mark on the highest. If one desires to sort the citation mark however pressed that key alone, the image that would seem could be the apostrophe. The citation mark will solely seem if each the required key and the Shift key are pressed.


Menu key
The Menu key or Application secret's a key discovered on Windows-oriented pc keyboards. It is used to launch a context menu with the keyboard somewhat than with the same old proper mouse button. The key's image is often a small icon depicting a cursor hovering above a menu. On some Samsung keyboards the cursor within the icon shouldn't be current, displaying the menu solely. This key was created concurrently the Windows key. This secret's usually used when the fitting mouse button shouldn't be current on the mouse. Some Windows public terminals wouldn't have a Menu key on their keyboard to forestall customers from right-clicking (nevertheless, in lots of Windows purposes, an identical performance will be invoked with the Shift+F10 keyboard shortcut).


Miscellaneous
Multimedia buttons on some keyboards give fast entry to the Internet or management the amount of the audio system.
Many, however not all, pc keyboards have a numeric keypad to the fitting of the alphabetic keyboard, typically separated from the opposite teams of keys such because the operate keys and system command keys, which incorporates numbers, fundamental mathematical symbols (e.g., addition, subtraction, and so forth.), and some operate keys. On Japanese/Korean keyboards, there could also be Language input keys for altering the language to make use of. Some keyboards have energy administration keys (e.g., energy key, sleep key and wake key); Internet keys to entry an online browser or E-mail; and/or multimedia keys, corresponding to quantity controls; or keys that may be programmed by the person to launch a specified utility or a command like minimizing all home windows.


Numeric keys

When we calculate, we use these numeric keys to sort numbers. Symbols involved with calculations corresponding to addition, subtraction, multiplication and division symbols are situated on this group of keys. The enter key on this keys point out the equal signal.


Multiple layouts
It is feasible to put in a number of keyboard layouts inside an working system and swap between them, both via options carried out throughout the OS, or via an exterior utility. Microsoft Windows,[23] Linux,[24] and Mac[25] present assist so as to add keyboard layouts and select from them.


Layout altering software program
The character code produced by any key press is set by the keyboard driver software program. A key press generates a scancode which is interpreted as an alphanumeric character or management operate. Depending on working techniques, varied utility applications can be found to create, add and swap amongst keyboard layouts. Many applications can be found, a few of that are language particular.

The association of symbols of particular language will be custom-made. An present keyboard format will be edited, and a brand new format will be created utilizing the sort of software program.

For instance, Ukelele [sic] for Mac,[26] The Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator[27] and open-source Avro Keyboard for Windows present the flexibility to customise the keyboard format as desired.


Illumination

Keyboards and keypads could also be illuminated from inside, particularly on tools for cell use. Illumination facilitates using the keyboard or keypad in darkish environments. Some gaming keyboards have lighted keys, to make it simpler for avid gamers to seek out command keys whereas enjoying in a darkish room. Some keyboards might have small LED lights in a couple of essential operate keys, to remind customers that the operate is activated (see photograph).


Keys with built-in LED indicator lights
Technology

Main article: Keyboard technology
Key switches

In the primary digital keyboards within the early 1970s, the important thing switches have been particular person switches inserted into holes in metallic frames. These keyboards price from 80 to 120 USD and have been utilized in mainframe information terminals. The hottest swap sorts have been reed switches (contacts enclosed in a vacuum in a glass capsule, affected by a magnet mounted on the swap plunger).[citation needed]

In the mid-1970s, lower-cost direct-contact key switches have been launched, however their life in swap cycles was a lot shorter (rated ten million cycles) as a result of they have been open to the setting. This grew to become extra acceptable, nevertheless, to be used in pc terminals on the time, which started to see more and more shorter mannequin lifespans as they superior.[28]

In 1978, Key Tronic Corporation launched keyboards with capacitive-based switches, one of many first keyboard applied sciences to not use self-contained switches.[29] There was merely a sponge pad with a conductive-coated Mylar plastic sheet on the swap plunger, and two half-moon hint patterns on the printed circuit board under. As the important thing was depressed, the capacitance between the plunger pad and the patterns on the PCB under modified, which was detected by built-in circuits (IC). These keyboards have been claimed to have the identical reliability as the opposite "solid-state swap" keyboards corresponding to inductive and Hall-effect, however aggressive with direct-contact keyboards. Prices of $60 for keyboards have been achieved, and Key Tronic quickly grew to become the biggest impartial keyboard producer.

Meanwhile, IBM made their very own keyboards, utilizing their very own patented expertise: Keys on older IBM keyboards[30] have been made with a "buckling spring" mechanism, during which a coil spring beneath the important thing buckles beneath stress from the person's finger, triggering a hammer that presses two plastic sheets (membranes) with conductive traces collectively, finishing a circuit. This produces a clicking sound and offers bodily suggestions for the typist, indicating that the important thing has been depressed.[31]

The first digital keyboards had a typewriter key journey distance of 0.187 inches (4.75 mm), keytops have been a half-inch (12.7 mm) excessive, and keyboards have been about two inches (5 cm) thick. Over time, much less key journey was accepted out there, lastly touchdown on 0.110 inches (2.79 mm). Coincident with this, Key Tronic was the primary firm to introduce a keyboard that was solely about one inch thick. And now keyboards measure solely a couple of half-inch thick.

Keytops are an essential component of keyboards. In the start, keyboard keytops had a "dish form" on high, like typewriters earlier than them. Keyboard key legends have to be extraordinarily sturdy over tens of hundreds of thousands of depressions, since they're subjected to excessive mechanical put on from fingers and fingernails, and topic handy oils and lotions, so engraving and filling key legends with paint, as was completed beforehand for particular person switches, was by no means acceptable. So, for the primary digital keyboards, the important thing legends have been produced by two-shot (or double-shot, or two-color) molding, the place both the important thing shell or the within of the important thing with the important thing legend was molded first, after which the opposite coloration molded second. But, to avoid wasting price, different strategies have been explored, corresponding to sublimation printing and laser engraving, each strategies which may very well be used to print a complete keyboard on the similar time.

Initially, sublimation printing, the place a particular ink is printed onto the keycap floor and the applying of warmth causes the ink molecules to penetrate and commingle with the plastic modules, had an issue as a result of finger oils induced the molecules to disperse, however then a essentially very exhausting clear coating was utilized to forestall this. Coincident with sublimation printing, which was first utilized in excessive quantity by IBM on their keyboards, was the introduction by IBM of single-curved-dish keycaps to facilitate high quality printing of key legends by having a constantly curved floor as an alternative of a dish. But one downside with sublimation or laser printing was that the processes took too lengthy and solely darkish legends may very well be printed on light-colored keys. On one other be aware, IBM was distinctive in utilizing separate shells, or "keycaps", on keytop bases. This may need made their manufacturing of various keyboard layouts extra versatile, however the motive for doing this was that the plastic materials that wanted for use for sublimation printing was completely different from customary ABS keytop plastic materials.

Three closing mechanical applied sciences introduced keyboards to the place they're as we speak, driving the associated fee nicely beneath $10:


"Monoblock" keyboard designs have been developed the place particular person swap housings have been eradicated and a one-piece "monoblock" housing used as an alternative. This was doable due to molding strategies that would present very tight tolerances for the switch-plunger holes and guides throughout the width of the keyboard in order that the important thing plunger-to-housing clearances weren't too tight or too unfastened, both of which might trigger the keys to bind.
The use of contact-switch membrane sheets beneath the monoblock. This expertise got here from flat-panel switch membranes, the place the swap contacts are printed inside a high and backside layer, with a spacer layer in between, in order that when stress is utilized to the realm above, a direct electrical contact is made. The membrane layers will be printed by very-high quantity, low-cost "reel-to-reel" printing machines, with every keyboard membrane reduce and punched out afterwards.
Plastic supplies performed a vital half within the improvement and progress of digital keyboards. Until "monoblocks" got here alongside, GE's "self-lubricating" Delrin was the one plastic materials for keyboard swap plungers that would face up to the beating over tens of hundreds of thousands of cycles of lifetime use. Greasing or oiling swap plungers was undesirable as a result of it could appeal to dirt over time which might finally have an effect on the texture and even bind the important thing switches (though keyboard producers would typically sneak this into their keyboards, particularly if they might not management the tolerances of the important thing plungers and housings nicely sufficient to have a clean key melancholy really feel or stop binding). But Delrin was solely obtainable in black and white, and was not appropriate for keytops (too tender), so keytops use ABS plastic. However, as plastic molding superior in sustaining tight tolerances, and as key journey size lowered from 0.187-inch to 0.110-inch (4.75 mm to 2.79 mm), single-part keytop/plungers may very well be fabricated from ABS, with the keyboard monolocks additionally fabricated from ABS.


Control processor

Scanning process
Computer keyboards embody control circuitry to transform key presses into key codes[32] (often scancodes) that the pc's electronics can perceive. The key switches are linked by way of the printed circuit board in an electrical X-Y matrix the place a voltage is supplied sequentially to the Y strains and, when a secret's depressed, detected sequentially by scanning the X strains.

The first pc keyboards have been for mainframe pc information terminals and used discrete digital elements. The first keyboard microprocessor was launched in 1972 by General Instruments, however keyboards have been utilizing the single-chip 8048 microcontroller variant because it grew to become obtainable in 1978.[33] The keyboard swap matrix is wired to its inputs, it converts the keystrokes to key codes, and, for a indifferent keyboard, sends the codes down a serial cable (the keyboard twine) to the principle processor on the pc motherboard. This serial keyboard cable communication is simply bi-directional to the extent that the pc's electronics controls the illumination of the caps lock, num lock and scroll lock lights.

One check for whether or not the pc has crashed is urgent the caps lock key. The keyboard sends the important thing code to the keyboard driver working in the principle pc; if the principle pc is working, it instructions the sunshine to activate. All the opposite indicator lights work in an identical approach. The keyboard driver additionally tracks the Shift, alt and management state of the keyboard.

Some lower-quality keyboards have a number of or false key entries attributable to insufficient electrical designs. These are attributable to insufficient keyswitch "debouncing" or insufficient keyswitch matrix format that do not enable a number of keys to be depressed on the similar time, each circumstances that are defined under:

When urgent a keyboard key, the important thing contacts might "bounce" towards one another for a number of milliseconds earlier than they settle into agency contact. When launched, they bounce some extra till they revert to the uncontacted state. If the pc have been awaiting every pulse, it could see many keystrokes for what the person thought was only one. To resolve this downside, the processor in a keyboard (or pc) "debounces" the keystrokes, by aggregating them throughout time to provide one "confirmed" keystroke.

Some low-quality keyboards additionally undergo issues with rollover (that's, when a number of keys pressed on the similar time, or when keys are pressed so quick that a number of keys are down throughout the similar milliseconds). Early "solid-state" keyswitch keyboards didn't have this downside as a result of the keyswitches are electrically remoted from one another, and early "direct-contact" keyswitch keyboards prevented this downside by having isolation diodes for each keyswitch. These early keyboards had "n-key" rollover, which suggests any variety of keys will be depressed and the keyboard will nonetheless acknowledge the subsequent key depressed. But when three keys are pressed (electrically closed) on the similar time in a "direct contact" keyswitch matrix that does not have isolation diodes, the keyboard electronics can see a fourth "phantom" key which is the intersection of the X and Y strains of the three keys. Some varieties of keyboard circuitry will register a most variety of keys at one time. "Three-key" rollover, additionally referred to as "phantom key blocking" or "phantom key lockout", will solely register three keys and ignore all others till one of many three keys is lifted. This is undesirable, particularly for quick typing (hitting new keys earlier than the fingers can launch earlier keys), and games (designed for a number of key presses).

As direct-contact membrane keyboards grew to become standard, the obtainable rollover of keys was optimized by analyzing the most typical key sequences and inserting these keys in order that they don't probably produce phantom keys within the electrical key matrix (for instance, merely inserting three or 4 keys that is likely to be depressed concurrently on the identical X or similar Y line, so that a phantom key intersection/quick can't occur), in order that blocking a 3rd key often is not an issue. But lower-quality keyboard designs and unknowledgeable engineers might not know these tips, and it could nonetheless be an issue in video games attributable to wildly completely different or configurable layouts in several video games.


Connection sorts

There are a number of methods of connecting a keyboard to a system unit (extra exactly, to its keyboard controller) utilizing cables, together with the usual AT connector generally discovered on motherboards, which was finally changed by the PS/2 and the USB connection. Prior to the iMac line of techniques, Apple used the proprietary Apple Desktop Bus for its keyboard connector.

Wireless keyboards have turn out to be standard for his or her elevated person freedom. A wi-fi keyboard typically features a required mixture transmitter and receiver unit that attaches to the pc's keyboard port. The wi-fi facet is achieved both by radio frequency (RF) or by infrared (IR) alerts despatched and obtained from each the keyboard and the unit connected to the pc. A wi-fi keyboard might use an trade customary RF, referred to as Bluetooth. With Bluetooth, the transceiver could also be constructed into the pc. However, a wi-fi keyboard wants batteries to work and should pose a safety downside as a result of threat of knowledge "eavesdropping" by hackers. Wireless solar keyboards cost their batteries from small solar panels utilizing sunlight or customary synthetic lighting. An early instance of a client wi-fi keyboard is that of the Olivetti Envision.


Alternative text-entering strategies

On-screen keyboard managed with the mouse can be utilized by customers with restricted mobility
Optical character recognition (OCR) is preferable to rekeying for changing present textual content that's already written down however not in machine-readable format (for instance, a Linotype-composed guide from the 1940s). In different phrases, to transform the textual content from a picture to editable textual content (that's, a string of character codes), an individual might re-type it, or a pc might take a look at the picture and deduce what every character is. OCR expertise has already reached a formidable state (for instance, Google Book Search) and guarantees extra for the longer term.

Speech recognition converts speech into machine-readable textual content (that's, a string of character codes). This expertise has additionally reached a complicated state and is carried out in various software products. For sure makes use of (e.g., transcription of medical or authorized dictation; journalism; writing essays or novels) speech recognition is beginning to change the keyboard. However, the shortage of privateness when issuing voice instructions and dictation makes this type of enter unsuitable for a lot of environments.

Pointing devices can be utilized to enter textual content or characters in contexts the place utilizing a bodily keyboard could be inappropriate or unimaginable. These equipment sometimes current characters on a show, in a format that gives quick entry to the extra often used characters or character mixtures. Popular examples of this type of enter are Graffiti, Dasher and on-screen virtual keyboards.


Other points

Keystroke logging

Unencrypted wi-fi bluetooth keyboards are recognized to be susceptible to sign theft by inserting a covert listening system in the identical room because the keyboard to smell and report bluetooth packets for the aim of logging keys typed by the person. Microsoft wi-fi keyboards 2011 and earlier are documented to have this
vulnerability.[34]

Keystroke logging (typically referred to as keylogging) is a technique of capturing and recording person keystrokes. While it's used legally to measure worker productiveness on sure clerical duties, or by legislation enforcement businesses to seek out out about unlawful actions, additionally it is utilized by hackers for varied unlawful or malicious acts. Hackers use keyloggers as a way to acquire passwords or encryption keys and thus bypass different safety measures.

Keystroke logging will be achieved by each hardware and software program means. Hardware key loggers are connected to the keyboard cable or put in inside customary keyboards. Software keyloggers work on the goal pc's working system and achieve unauthorized entry to the hardware, hook into the keyboard with capabilities supplied by the OS, or use distant entry software program to transmit recorded information out of the goal pc to a distant location. Some hackers additionally use wi-fi keylogger sniffers to gather packets of knowledge being transferred from a wi-fi keyboard and its receiver, after which they crack the encryption key getting used to safe wi-fi communications between the 2 units.

Anti-spyware purposes are capable of detect many keyloggers and cleanse them. Responsible distributors of monitoring software program assist detection by anti-spyware applications, thus stopping abuse of the software program. Enabling a firewall doesn't cease keyloggers per se, however can presumably stop transmission of the logged materials over the web if correctly configured. Network monitors (also called reverse-firewalls) can be utilized to alert the person at any time when an utility makes an attempt to make a community connection. This offers the person the possibility to forestall the keylogger from "phoning home" along with his or her typed data. Automatic form-filling applications can stop keylogging totally by not utilizing the keyboard in any respect. Most keyloggers will be fooled by alternating between typing the login credentials and typing characters someplace else within the focus window.[35]

Keyboards are additionally recognized to emit electromagnetic signatures that may be detected utilizing particular spying tools to reconstruct the keys pressed on the keyboard. Neal O'Farrell, government director of the Identity Theft Council, revealed to InformationWeek that "More than 25 years in the past, a few former spooks confirmed me how they might seize a person's ATM PIN, from a van parked throughout the road, just by capturing and decoding the electromagnetic alerts generated by each keystroke," O'Farrell mentioned. "They might even seize keystrokes from computer systems in close by places of work, however the expertise wasn't refined sufficient to focus in on any particular pc."[36]


Physical damage

Proper ergonomic design of pc keyboard desks is important to forestall repetitive pressure accidents, which may develop over time and might result in long-term incapacity.[37] Research means that the upright place previously advocated can result in degenerative disc illness, and that a 45 diploma reclined place is more healthy.[38]
The use of any keyboard might trigger severe damage (that's, carpal tunnel syndrome or different repetitive strain injury) to arms, wrists, arms, neck or again.[citation needed] The dangers of accidents will be lowered by taking frequent quick breaks to rise up and stroll round a few instances each hour. As nicely, customers ought to differ duties all through the day, to keep away from overuse of the arms and wrists. When inputting on the keyboard, an individual ought to preserve the shoulders relaxed with the elbows on the facet, with the keyboard and mouse positioned in order that reaching shouldn't be obligatory. The chair peak and keyboard tray ought to be adjusted in order that the wrists are straight, and the wrists shouldn't be rested on sharp desk edges. Wrist or palm rests shouldn't be used whereas typing.

Some adaptive technology starting from particular keyboards, mouse replacements and pen pill interfaces to speech recognition software program can cut back the chance of damage. Pause software program reminds the person to pause often. Switching to a way more ergonomic mouse, corresponding to a vertical mouse or joystick mouse might present aid. Switching from utilizing a mouse to utilizing a stylus pen with graphic pill or a touchpad can reduce the repetitive pressure on the arms and arms.


Pathogen transmission

Some keyboards have been discovered to include 5 instances extra probably dangerous germs than a bathroom seat.[39]
This generally is a concern when utilizing shared keyboards; the keyboards can function vectors for pathogens that trigger the cold, flu, and different communicable diseases simply unfold by oblique contact.


See additionally

Digital pen
IBM PC keyboard
Keyboard protector
Overlay keyboard
Table of keyboard shortcuts




References



^ "computer keyboard". TheFreeDictionary.com. Retrieved 2018-06-26..mw-parser-output cite.quotationfont-style:inherit.mw-parser-output qquotes:"""""""'""'".mw-parser-output code.cs1-codecoloration:inherit;background:inherit;border:inherit;padding:inherit.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-free abackground:url("//add.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/65/Lock-green.svg/9px-Lock-green.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:proper .1em middle.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-limited a,.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-registration abackground:url("//add.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d6/Lock-gray-alt-2.svg/9px-Lock-gray-alt-2.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:proper .1em middle.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-subscription abackground:url("//add.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/aa/Lock-red-alt-2.svg/9px-Lock-red-alt-2.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:proper .1em middle.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registrationcoloration:#555.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription span,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration spanborder-bottom:1px dotted;cursor:assist.mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-errorshow:none;font-size:100%.mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-errorfont-size:100%.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration,.mw-parser-output .cs1-formatfont-size:95%.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-left,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-leftpadding-left:0.2em.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-right,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-rightpadding-right:0.2em

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^ Khalid Saeed (2016). New Directions in Behavioral Biometrics. ISBN 1315349310.

^ "Essay on Technology Advancements in Computer Interfaces".

^ Smith, Andy (15 June 2011). "Gallery: IBM: 100 Years of THINKing Big". ZDNet. Archived from the unique on 10 December 2015. Retrieved 20 October 2015.

^ "Past is prototype: The evolution of the computer keyboard". ComputerWorld.com. November 2, 2012.

^ D Kocielinski (2013). "Linear interface for graphical interface of touch-screen".

^ "One of the primary merchandise we caught wind of on the Consumer Electronics Show was the TrewGrip keyboard, a handheld mannequin" "TrewGrip handheld keyboard almost a solution for thumb-typing". January 11, 2014.

^ "Jul 28, 2009 - If you do a whole lot of typing, or if in case you have workers who do a complete bunch of typing - ergonomic keyboards make quite a lot of sense." "10 ergonomic keyboards that actually do their job". TechRepublic.com. July 28, 2009.

^ Alpha Grip Programming and Productivity Improvement White Paper Archived 25 February 2015 on the Wayback Machine.. Alphagrips.com. Retrieved on 9 December 2013.

^ The Alphagrip – The World's most Comfortable Ergonomic Keyboard for Typing and Programming Archived 25 February 2015 on the Wayback Machine.. Alphagrips.com. Retrieved on 9 December 2011.

^ "It combines the physique of a recreation controller with the capabilities of each a trackball and a keyboard." "AlphaGrip Review (iGrip)". February 9, 2018.

^ MB Trudeau (2013). "Tablet Keyboard Configuration Affects Performance, Discomfort".

^ Ian Morris (May 23, 2014). "Hate Your Android Keyboard? Try One Of These Four Alternatives". Forbes.

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^ MEPIS 8.5 user's manual Archived 7 December 2010 on the Wayback Machine. (MEPISlovers.org)

^ An introduction to Linux Mint 8 – Main Edition (Helena) Archived 25 December 2010 on the Wayback Machine. (Liberian Geek )

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^ "Changing The Language & Keyboard Layout On Various Distributions". Archived from the unique on 1 July 2010. Retrieved 7 October 2010.

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^ "Why I Use the IBM Model M Keyboard That's Older Than I Am". SlashDot.org. July 7, 2018.

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External hyperlinks


How Computer Keyboards Work at HowStuffWorks
"Art of Assembly Language: Chapter Twenty": The PC Keyboard
Keyboard matrix circuits
PC World. "The 10 worst PC Keyboards of All Time".



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