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How to choose a keyboard for programming

Programming is one of the most important PC tasks where typing efficiency is important. Because you will be keying all day long, it is important to choose the right keyboard as your work tool.

First, decide on a keyboard size.

Programming involves a lot of keystrokes, so it is important to choose a keyboard that fits your body.

There are three main types of keyboard sizes as follows

  1. full size
  2. ten-keyless
  3. compact

The compact size is popular among programmers. Compact size keyboards, such as the 60% size, are preferred because it is more efficient to type when programming, which requires a lot of keystrokes, by moving the hands as little as possible.

However, not only do compact-sized keyboards lack a numeric keypad, they often omit arrow keys and operation keys such as Home, End, and Del, so you need to get used to special operations with the addition of the Fn key. If you are not accustomed to these special operations, typing can be stressful, so if you are unsure, you may want to choose a tenkeyless keyboard.

Full-size keyboards are common on desktop PCs, but they are not a major player in programming, partly because numeric input is not that common in programming. However, this does not mean that full-size keyboards are unsuitable for programming, so if you find it easier to work with a numeric keypad, a full-size keyboard is a good choice.

Let's decide on the layout.

Key layout is important in programming because you will use a greater variety of keys than in normal text entry. While differences in keyswitches and keycaps are sensory and you will quickly become familiar with them, key layouts can induce typing errors if you are not used to them, so it is important to choose a key layout with which you are familiar.

When choosing a non-English keyboard, there are differences in the layout for each language. Note that different manufacturers may have different layouts.

Also note that special size keyboards, such as 60% keyboards, have special layouts. If you become accustomed to a special key layout, you may find yourself typing incorrectly when using other keyboard layouts.

Choose the switch method

Once the size and layout are determined, choose a switch system.

The following three types of keyboards are most likely to be chosen for programming.

  1. membrane
  2. mechanical
  3. non-contact type

Membrane is a common keyboard switch method and is inexpensive. The mechanical method is often used in gaming keyboards and features a unique switch feel and the ability to choose the switch axis to suit your preference. The non-contact method is used in keyboards popular with programmers, such as the HHKB.

Keyboard is an important tool in programming

In programming, where you give commands to the computer, keystrokes are the main task, so the choice of keyboard as an interface is an important tool in terms of work efficiency.

Another difficulty in keyboard selection is that an expensive keyboard is not necessarily the best keyboard for you. Even an expensive keyboard with good reviews is not a good keyboard if it does not suit you.

Because of this difficulty, there is a danger that if you do not find a keyboard that you like, you will end up wanting different ones one after another. Keyboards are a deep genre.

Once you get used to a good keyboard, you will never want to leave it behind, and you will want to use your favorite keyboard at all times.