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The layout of a keyboard refers to the organization of its keys; it is important for many reasons. For starters, typing with speed and accuracy requires familiarity with the locations of the various keys, and changing between keyboards of different types can be difficult for many touch typists. Some people also find certain key configurations easier to use than others in general, and some PC users have special needs or requirements that can best be met by special keyboard layouts.
In this section I take a look at various matters related to the layout of the keys on the keyboard. I begin with a page that looks at the issues related to layout and how they affect the PC user. I then discuss various alphanumeric key layouts; that is, alternate ways of organizing the letter, number and punctuation keys in the main typing area. Then, I discuss the various standards for overall keyboard layouts (all keys, not just the alphanumerics) and finally, several non-standard keyboard layouts sometimes seen.
Next: General Layout Issues