The keyboard is perhaps the most important pointing device. It’s a way to input text and provides an interface for playing games and controlling media players. The history of the keyboard dates back to the 18th century, a time when people used typewriters. Thus, it’s just to say that a keyboard belongs to the same family. Like every other electronic device, there are advantages and disadvantages of a keyboard you should be aware of. This study will help you make an educated decision when choosing your next computer peripheral.
Advantages of keyboard
Since its invention, this has been the standard input device for computers and remains popular due to its low cost, ease of use, and portability. There are many pros of a keyboard to discover if you haven’t noticed them yet. Some of them are explained below.
1. Allows you to enter data quickly
Keyboards allow you to quickly type characters, numbers, and symbols without moving your hands from the home row of keys on the keyboard. Using a typical key layout is much faster than using any other input device such as touch or handwriting recognition software, too. That’s because you can use it with all ten fingers at once.
Additionally, you can type without looking at the keys or screen, allowing you to focus on whatever you are entering. It also allows for more flexibility because there are many keyboards to choose from depending on your needs and preferences. After all, keyboard types range in size, shape, features, and layout.
2. It can efficiently type words that are hard to spell
As most people know, it is hard for many English native speakers to type words like “Mississippi”. Now imagine trying to spell out a whole sentence! A keyboard can help solve this problem because of the convenience of pressing multiple keys at once. For example, you could type “M-i-s” and then automatically press a key, adding the “ss”.
This process is also very helpful for people who are used to writing cursive because they can type out their words as they would normally write them. However, this does create issues when typing symbols or numerals because it requires switching between different keyboard modes.
3. Helps with self-expression
The keyboard is one of the most efficient ways to get thoughts down on paper. The freedom and space that come with typing let writers take their time. This makes for deeper self-expression than if they were trying to write quickly while thinking about what other people might say or think in response. The ease provided by a computer’s keystroke system may not always be as fast or accurate compared with penning individual letters by hand. But it does allow people who are expressing themselves deeply enough to have more room within those words. This gives them greater potential when communicating ideas.
4. Helps you achieve more in less time
When typing, you don’t have to worry about what your handwriting looks like or where it is placed on the page. This means that writers can get more done in a shorter time. After all, they aren’t trying hard to make their handwriting look pretty and legible. Also, when writing using a keyboard, there are no limits on how much you can write at a time.
This is one of the reasons why typing essays and reports have become popular, especially for students who need to meet word limits or deadlines. Not only do people get more done in less time, but it also makes it easier and less stressful if they want to edit their work later on.
5. Aids business and marketing
In today’s world, businesses need to have a strong presence on the Internet. While social media platforms are an effective way to connect with different people worldwide, they also offer many benefits. Two examples are networking with other companies and building brand awareness. Typing can help these goals because business owners can write out their thoughts and share them on different social media sites.
Thus, businesses can get the word out about new products or services without hiring a marketing team, which is becoming more and more common in this digital age. Many tutorials that are available online explain how to use certain social media platforms (e.g., Instagram and Facebook) and make the most out of them.
6. Keyboards shortcuts can help other tasks
Although keyboards, primarily, are thought to help with typing, it is not necessarily the case. Nowadays, people use various keyboard shortcuts to help them in other tasks. Some popular shortcuts are Ctrl + C, X, V, or Ctrl + Alt + Del. These shortcuts can also help with typing a document, editing photos, playing games (the best gaming keyboards), and other computer operations. Thus, a keyboard is a versatile input device that can relay several commands to the CPU instead of being a simple typewriter.
Disadvantages of Keyboard
Despite being known for immense benefits, there are some downsides to the keyboard you must know. It is exactly those disadvantages of keyboards we’ll mention in the following segments.
1. Not as portable as pen or pencil
Some people prefer to write by hand because they can carry around notepads or journals wherever they go. It’s undoubtedly harder to travel with a keyboard since it requires an external device, e.g., a laptop, smartphone, tablet, or portable screen). This may be inconvenient for some people based on their lifestyle and schedule. This issue also comes up when trying to type out ideas quickly without access to a nearby device with a keyboard, such as a computer or printer.
Most smartphones only have the option of using touchscreen keyboards, though. However, this tends to slow down many writers who are used to typing words letter-by-letter rather than swiping across different letters at once as you would do on your phone’s home screen.
2. It can be confusing
When you write by hand, it is easy for people to ignore mistakes and edit them out later on. However, when typing with a keyboard, correcting spelling or grammatical errors can sometimes take more time than just rewriting the entire sentence without any errors in the first place. This makes things harder for writers who are trying their best not to make any typos at all while still giving themselves enough room for self-expression.
This issue also comes up when typing long sections of text such as essays or reports. There may be instances where too much information has been written down that could potentially go past word limits (e.g., the essay should only be double-spaced) and cause confusion due to formatting issues.
3. Different writing preferences
Some people prefer to write differently when they use a keyboard compared to writing by hand. For instance, many writers may choose not to capitalize the first letter of every sentence or only put one space between each word. Otherwise, they would put two because it makes their writing look more professional and easier to read for other audiences. Using a computer can sometimes cause problems with several types of publishing companies, too.
They each have distinct preferences, some of which are shared, on how things should be done. They implement this to make things easier for certain reader bases, e.g., illiterate readers or people unfamiliar with certain formatting styles.
4. Difficult to make a unique writing style
Keeping up with proper formatting styles can also make it challenging for writers to try their best to develop different ways of expressing themselves. For example, some people may need to think about what they want before writing down each sentence. That way, they can ensure they follow all grammatical rules and spelling conventions, as much as that’s possible, throughout the whole piece.
This means that originality can be sacrificed for technicalities. For instance, fear of accidentally skipping capitalization or punctuation marks could lead readers astray if done too frequently without an explanation afterward. One example is, “I’m sorry I didn’t capitalize anything, I just wanted my story/essay report/college application letter done on time!”
5. Illiterate readers often experience issues
Using a keyboard can cause problems for some illiterate people or those who don’t know how any other way besides writing. This is because many of the letters found inside the alphabet (e.g., “w” and “x”) look exactly like one another when they’re typed out. This is especially true on certain commonly used fonts. As mentioned, this makes it harder for readers without the proper knowledge to tell them apart while reading their work afterward.
Compare this to writing things down by hand, where each letter has a unique shape that makes it easy for your brain to recognize and comprehend what you’re looking at. This isn’t always true, or else no one would rely on keyboards. However, it’s still a significant disadvantage associated with keyboard use compared to manually putting pen to paper.
6. Can’t help with Diagrams and Charts
While we agree that keyboards are crucial, they are not all-powerful. A keyboard can’t help users with diagrams or charts. Yes, it can enter data after the fact. But the creation of such diagrams and charts is reliant on the mouse.