Tuesday, April 12, 2011

But the unique and lasting feature of the Sholes & Glidden was the QWERTYUIOP keyboard layout which is in worldwide use today in spite of being an illogical arrangement adopted merely in order to avoid adjacent typebars clashing. -- Duncan James: Old Typewriters, Shire Publications, Princes Risborough (1993).

Adjacent typebars? Well, in fact, any two typebars of QWERTYUIOP were not adjacent in the typebar basket of Sholes & Glidden Type-Writer. There was a typebar for numeral 2 between Q and W. Numerals 3 and 4 between W and E. 5 between E and R. 6 between R and T. 7 between T and Y. 8 between Y and U. 9 between U and I. "-" between I and O. And "," between O and P. Any rearrangement of QWERTYUIOP could avoid their typebars to be placed adjacently. Mr. James, you cannot explain how QWERTYUIOP was made, telling "merely in order to avoid adjacent typebars clashing" (cf. Koichi Yasuoka and Motoko Yasuoka: "On the Prehistory of QWERTY", ZINBUN, No.42 (March 2011), pp.161-174).

Typebar basket of Sholes & Glidden Type-Writer (top view)


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