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Questions tagged [keyboard]

physical interface for entering text character by character.

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136 votes
7 answers
55k views

Why do numpads on keyboards and phones have reversed layouts?

I came across this on the web. It's supposed to be funny, but we all know better :) So, why are the numpad layouts different, and what are the reasons behind each?
Vitaly Mijiritsky's user avatar
90 votes
3 answers
40k views

Why are keyboard keys staggered?

In every keyboard that I have used, the keys are arranged so that the keys are staggered a small increment to the left from the previous row. Q is above and slightly to the left of A, and A is above ...
mdkess's user avatar
  • 1,049
30 votes
11 answers
16k views

How to improve the smartphone keyboard layout?

I have loads of problems with the small keys on my smartphone as my fingers cover them completely. I guess most people have the same problem. The Qwerty keyboard layout was designed for ten-finger ...
GUI Junkie's user avatar
  • 1,769
13 votes
3 answers
8k views

Behavior of the Enter button in a form

What is a better experience for a user if they press enter when using a form? Should it submit the form or move to the next field?
Lee's user avatar
  • 187
50 votes
6 answers
19k views

Are there any recent studies of the "Keyboard vs Mouse"-issue?

Back in the late 80's, Apple Human Interface concluded that the mouse is faster than the keyboard, objectively. But also that every test person subjectively thought that the keyboard was faster. ...
Jørn E. Angeltveit's user avatar
33 votes
4 answers
12k views

Why CTRL + C multiple times [duplicate]

I have recently noticed that I press CTRL + C more than once, even if I know that the file has been copied to the clipboard. But I press CTRL + X or CTRL + V only once. Why do I do this? Is this ...
Bhavesh's user avatar
  • 433
97 votes
15 answers
11k views

Is Google Instant good or bad UX? [closed]

For power users, it clearly saves time in some circumstances. It also jumps around alot and does things that are very different than before. One person said it is like a guy who finishes your ...
Glen Lipka's user avatar
  • 11.7k
83 votes
7 answers
189k views

Why do modern keyboards have Scroll Lock?

The Scroll Lock key is useless in the modern day, and some higher-end keyboards don't even have it: Same can be said for the Pause and Break keys, but however it pauses the BIOS POST output on many ...
AStopher's user avatar
  • 974
32 votes
6 answers
16k views

Delay on keystroke when search as you type

I'm deploying an instant search on my Windows app. At the first implementation, when the user types a key, the search engine makes a query and returns the results. I thought that that wasn't too ...
dbalboa's user avatar
  • 495
30 votes
6 answers
3k views

What is the best way to get users to discover and learn keyboard shortcuts

In a mouse driven desktop application, with a ribbon style interface and which has no menubar, what is the best way for users to learn about the shortcuts and accelerators which can help a user work ...
Roger Attrill's user avatar
28 votes
4 answers
2k views

Keyboard number row ordering

On a typical keyboard, why is the 0 in the number row next to the 9 instead of the 1? This seems like a question which should have a straight-forward answer, but the only one I could find is this ...
Bobson's user avatar
  • 610
16 votes
2 answers
2k views

How should keyboard mnemonics be localized?

Is there a standard approach to localizing (internationalize) keyboard mnemonics? For example, in Windows Notepad in English, if the user types Alt+E then P, the Edit menu opens and then the Paste ...
Peter Tseng's user avatar
15 votes
4 answers
2k views

What's the Best Interface for Entering Canadian Postal Codes on a Smartphone Keyboard?

Typical smartphone keyboards are modal. There is usually a basic QWERTY/Basic punctuation keyboard by default that can be switched to numeric/extended punctuation mode. This works reasonably well ...
Chris Cudmore's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
2k views

Why are the characters on the keyboard all capitalized?

Why are all the letters (A, B etc) and all the writings (Home, Page Up etc) on the keyboard, capitalized? Especially, the letters, because a new user could rightly expect uppercase letters to be ...
Bleeding Fingers's user avatar
49 votes
15 answers
18k views

Why are keyboards still the predominant input device? [closed]

While reading about the history of the computer keyboard I was a little surprised to hear that it is still the primary interface between humans and computers... Despite the development of ...
DaveAlger's user avatar
  • 15.9k
48 votes
6 answers
8k views

On a US keyboard why is + shifted but - isn't?

I am wondering why standard US keyboards allow you to type - by simply hitting the key, but the + button right next to it needs the Shift key. The default for that key is = and not a minus symbol. + ...
Keavon's user avatar
  • 1,704
18 votes
5 answers
17k views

Is there a logical alternative for the Escape key?

I have a game that can be played in your browser. It's a retro game (multiplayer snake) and the menus and your snake can only be controlled using your keyboard. Mouse input is ignored. I was using ...
Blaise's user avatar
  • 283
15 votes
3 answers
11k views

Should we include a "Back to top" button for mobile websites?

When building a mobile web site that needs to be accessible — do you consider it to be best practice to include a "Back to top" anchor link in a footer menu for long pages? I'm thinking about those ...
Tony Bolero's user avatar
  • 7,304
13 votes
3 answers
7k views

Why do keyboard keys have (most) letters in top left corner?

I was just looking at my keyboard (Logitech K200) for the millionth time and realized that the names of each key were "mostly" in the top left. The row of numbers at the top is just left aligned with ...
supersam654's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Hangman game on mobile - Qwerty or alphabetical keyboard

I'm building a hangman game as part of a bigger mobile educational application. As you know for hangman you select letters and see if they are part of the word or sentence. I'm trying to decide if I ...
TomDoes's user avatar
  • 2,315
8 votes
2 answers
625 views

Is there any research into the cost of switching between using a keyboard and a mouse?

My intuition and own experience tells me keyboard shortcut keys can be faster than using the mouse. However, some tasks like browsing the internet or a folder hierarchy truly benefit from using a ...
Steven Jeuris's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
3k views

What are the benefits of non-QWERTY keyboards?

I'm stuck with QWERTY, but have been tempted to try Dvorak. Dvorak advocates claim it's faster. Are there any studies that compare these two (main) keyboard layouts? Are there other layouts out there ...
GUI Junkie's user avatar
  • 1,769
8 votes
4 answers
3k views

Keyboard shortcuts on non-QWERTY keyboard layouts

I've been using the Dvorak keyboard layout for a few years, and something that's always bothered me is keyboard shortcuts. On a QWERTY keyboard copy and paste are conveniently positioned as Ctrl+C and ...
spencercw's user avatar
  • 183
7 votes
4 answers
1k views

Swipe specific keyboard?

QWERTY was used to prevent the arms of a typewriter from clashing. DVORAK is made for productivity (~70% of the typing on the homerow) If you use a swipe keyboard (as available on android 4.2?, swype ...
Viktor Mellgren's user avatar
7 votes
5 answers
627 views

Is it time to reevaluate what keys keyboards should have?

I just got my Google I/O Chromebook and one of the most interesting things about the keyboard layout is that certain keys have been replaced by Google with new ones that are more relevant for an ...
Rahul's user avatar
  • 23.8k
6 votes
3 answers
2k views

Universal or standard pattern of keyboard layout design

One of the arguments for having different keyboard layout designs is that they are tailored for different devices and their usage. So for example, a physical keyboard layout is often similar on a ...
Michael Lai's user avatar
  • 27.3k
5 votes
3 answers
4k views

Keyboard shortcuts overriding default browser action

I'd like to add some keyboard shortcuts to my website. How severely is usability affected if I override the default browser behavior? CTRL+B: bolds the text instead of open bookmarks. CTRL+N: go to ...
JoJo's user avatar
  • 10.9k
5 votes
1 answer
811 views

Why would number lock be disabled by default?

There was a time that number lock was enabled by default (at least in a Windows environment). Then, after an update one day, all the sudden the Number Lock is disabled. Why the change? What is it ...
Chad Harrison's user avatar
4 votes
4 answers
2k views

Usability of Ctrl + Enter Submitting of Forms

In my web app I want to give the possibility of submitting every form with Ctrl + Enter shortcut. What is better: submit the form with keyboard only when one of the fields of this form is focused ...
user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
3k views

Is white text on dark background better for usability on smartphone / tablet keyboards than the reverse?

Which is a better and usable Smart Phone or Tablet keyboard? White / light characters on Black / Dark keys on the keyboard layout. Black / Dark Grey text on the white / light grey colour keys layout. ...
Justin Samuel's user avatar