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Shipman's Kinesis keyboard page

I believe that converting to the Dvorak Simplified Keyboard can significantly improve anyone's typing speed, accuracy and comfort. These benefits come from placing the most frequently used keys directly under the home positions of the fingers, and arranging the rest so that it is easier to reach the more commonly used keys.

However, I now believe that there is an additional quantum leap available to typists for a quite reasonable price: the Kinesis keyboard family. I've been using the Kinesis ``Essential'' keyboard since September 1998, and I'll never go back to regular keyboards.

Here are the problems with the regular keyboard that the Kinesis layout solves:

Here is how the Kinesis design addresses the complaints above:

I've been doing a certain data entry task for many years now and I have pretty good baseline statistics on how fast I can do each record. When I converted to the Kinesis, the first two days were very frustrating. By one week I had all my speed back. After two weeks I was working 20% faster than ever. I haven't measured recently but I suspect the speed has plateaued now at about 25% faster.

I use the same DSK remapping software with the Kinesis that I'd been using with conventional keyboards. I believe anyone who is used to either QWERTY or DSK can convert to the Kinesis and get back all their speed, and then some, in maybe 40 hours of use.

Note: Although I don't suffer from RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury), there are a lot of RSI sufferers who find that the Kinesis reduces or eliminates the pain that they get from using regular keyboards.

See the Kinesis Corporation page for pictures, descriptions, testimonials, RSI information, and pointers to dealers. I've bought two from one of their vendors, Softek Business Systems, and their service was very good.

Cost is in the $200-230 range for the basic model, which is all I've needed. Yes, there are lots of keyboards out there for much cheaper than that. But how much is your time worth? What would be the impact on your productivity if you developed RSI?

See also: Shipman's ergonomics page
Previous: The Dvorak Simplified Keyboard: Forty Years of Frustration
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John W. Shipman,
Last updated: 1998/10/25 23:21:59