Being a software developer, the keyboard is the most important tool to interact with the computer. Thus, the layout and placement of buttons is very essential. Especially the grouping of the escape-button [ESC] and functional buttons [F1] - [F12]. On a Standard Windows Natural Keyboard Layout the buttons are placed the way I've learned:

Windows natural keyboard layout

The palacement of the buttons on my old Windows Media Keyboard where the same, so I bought me a new one, not paying enough attention to the layout. Yes, It's my fault, because I didn't realize how important the layout is. Happy about my new Windows Media keyboard, I plugged it in and started working. The user experiance was horrible. Every time I hit the [ESC] button a new instance of Microsoft Outlook emerged on the screen. And trying to find the functional buttons just wasn't possible. They were missing. I couldn't find them because they were half the size of a normal button and being at a lower level than standard buttons. So I needed to look down on the keyboard every time to find them.

Microsoft media keyboard 3000

Two weeks later, I gave up. Now, I use the companion keyboard which was delivered with the computer. It works, but it is not what I want. I really need a new keyboard, with standard windows natural keyboard layout and silent buttons. Microsoft have the curved keyboard. Logitech also uses the half-size functional buttons and Razor have additional buttons above the row of functional buttons.

Where do I find a keyboard for developers?

closed as off topic by Charles Boyung, Patrick McElhaney May 3 '11 at 16:12

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  • This question, as asked, is off topic. Maybe you can try again, but instead of asking for a specific recommendation, put a UX spin on it. See blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/11/qa-is-hard-lets-go-shopping – Patrick McElhaney May 3 '11 at 16:18
  • I've edited the question to be another than a "let's go shopping-question". The answers up until todays timestamp (including my own) does not really answer the current edited question. I apologize for the inconvenience. – Benny Skogberg Nov 7 '12 at 13:25
  • I've rolled back the edits on this one. The edits - while making the question more on-topic - totally invalidated all the answers that have already been left. – JonW Nov 7 '12 at 13:50

I thinks it's really a matter of taste. My favorite keyboard is the Cherry eVolution. It's a laptop style keyboard, very slim and silent keys.

An other option would be the Das Keyboard. Geeky and very nice. But not silent.

A programmer friend of mine absolutely loves his Logitech Wave.

And of course there's the ultimate hacker keyboard, the IBM Model M.

Hope that helps, Phil

  • 1
    IBM Model M looks like the one for me - thanx! – Benny Skogberg Apr 29 '11 at 9:05

Colemak has been said to be a great alternative: http://colemak.com/

There is also a discussion about some alternative layouts on Coding Horror: http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/2008/11/we-are-typists-first-programmers-second.html

Hope this helps!


These things have a good 'feel' reputation - though I can't personally vouch for them.

If the 'super-cool-no symbols-look of the Ultimate Model' doesn't work for you try the Professional or Silent Models.


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