Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Vertical Split Keyboard Offers Lower Injury Risk For Typists, Cornell Study Finds

Date:
November 8, 1999
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
Tomorrow's computer keyboard might be played more like an accordion than a piano, says a Cornell University ergonomist. This, he says, is because a prototype vertical split keyboard (VK) allows two to three times more typing movements to stay in safe, low-risk positions for carpal tunnel syndrome compared with a traditional keyboard.

ITHACA, N.Y. -- Tomorrow's computer keyboard might be played more like an accordion than a piano, says a Cornell University ergonomist. This, he says, is because a prototype vertical split keyboard (VK) allows two to three times more typing movements to stay in safe, low-risk positions for carpal tunnel syndrome compared with a traditional keyboard.

In fact, in a Cornell study published in the Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 43rd Annual Meeting last month, Cornell ergonomists found that wrist angles and forearm movements stayed in the lowest risk zone for carpal tunnel syndrome 71 percent and 78 percent of the time, respectively, using the VK compared with only 44 and 25 percent using a traditional keyboard (TK). Wrists were put in the highest risk zone only 2 percent of the time using the VK compared with 12 percent with TK.

"These findings are important to the design of future keyboarding systems," says Alan Hedge, professor of design and environmental analysis at Cornell and director of Cornell's Human Factors and Ergonomics Laboratory.

Hedge and Timothy Muss, a graduate student who will receive his master's degree in the spring in the Department of Design and Environmental Analysis with a concentration in human factors and ergonomics, analyzed wrist posture (using gloves with special sensors) and typing performance of 12 female, right-handed, experienced touch-typists using a traditional keyboard and a VK.

Although the researchers found that the typists did slightly worse in typing speed and accuracy using the VK, Hedge said that the "magnitude of the difference is trivial, and with more practice on the VK, we believe the typists' performance would soon be on par with their work on traditional keyboards."

In a paper just published in the journal Ergonomics, Hedge reports that keyboards on lowered trays with a gentle, negative tilt away from the user puts 60 percent more typing movements within a low-risk zone for carpal tunnel syndrome compared with keyboards on desktops. In the latest study, typists used the TK on a lowered, flat keyboard tray. They also had palm supports for both keyboards, but for the VK arrangement, they also used an adjustable wooden frame with foam padding that attached to the VK with Velcro to support the arms and rest palms against.

The study was funded in part by a New York State College of Human Ecology Student Research Grant.

-30-

Related World Wide Web sites: The following sites provide additional information on this news release. Some might not be part of the Cornell University community, and Cornell has no control over their content or availability.

-- For a slide show presentation on the vertical keyboard:

http://ergo.human.cornell.edu/CUHFdownloadp.html

-- For information about the Cornell University Ergonomics Web:

http://ergo.human.cornell.edu

-- For information on the Cornell Human Factors and Ergonomics Research Laboratory:

http://ergo.human.cornell.edu/AHProjects/HFESlab.html

-- For information on the Department of Design and Environmental Analysis:

http://dea.human.cornell.edu/


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cornell University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "Vertical Split Keyboard Offers Lower Injury Risk For Typists, Cornell Study Finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 November 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/11/991108085330.htm>.
Cornell University. (1999, November 8). Vertical Split Keyboard Offers Lower Injury Risk For Typists, Cornell Study Finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/11/991108085330.htm
Cornell University. "Vertical Split Keyboard Offers Lower Injury Risk For Typists, Cornell Study Finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/11/991108085330.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Internet of Things Aims to Smarten Your Life

Internet of Things Aims to Smarten Your Life

AP (Oct. 22, 2014) — As more and more Bluetooth-enabled devices are reaching consumers, developers are busy connecting them together as part of the Internet of Things. (Oct. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thanks, Marty McFly! Hoverboards Could Be Coming In 2015

Thanks, Marty McFly! Hoverboards Could Be Coming In 2015

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) — If you've ever watched "Back to the Future Part II" and wanted to get your hands on a hoverboard, well, you might soon be in luck. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robots to Fly Planes Where Humans Can't

Robots to Fly Planes Where Humans Can't

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 21, 2014) — Researchers in South Korea are developing a robotic pilot that could potentially replace humans in the cockpit. Unlike drones and autopilot programs which are configured for specific aircraft, the robots' humanoid design will allow it to fly any type of plane with no additional sensors. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Japanese Scientists Unveil Floating 3D Projection

Japanese Scientists Unveil Floating 3D Projection

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 20, 2014) — Scientists in Tokyo have demonstrated what they say is the world's first 3D projection that floats in mid air. A laser that fires a pulse up to a thousand times a second superheats molecules in the air, creating a spark which can be guided to certain points in the air to shape what the human eye perceives as an image. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins