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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Guest Post: Why I Love My Ergo Keyboard

As promised, we will be hearing from others why they love the keyboards they do. Our first contributor on the topic comes from Jessalee Kube.


I have been an ergonomic keyboard convert for close to ten years now, using some iteration of this style since that time and transitioning to Microsoft's Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 following its release in late 2005.

I am unabashedly devoted to the split-key style this model features, mostly because it was designed with the touch typist in mind. The curved key bed offers the user a 12-degree angle that supports a more comfortable, natural position for your hands, wrists and forearms. Additionally, the slope and placement of the keys lessens the distance your fingers travel to strike neighboring keys from the traditional home position. Less distance means you cut down on the repetitive motions that can result in injury and strain.

To further sweeten the pot, this model also sports an integrated palm rest, a conveniently placed zoom button, customizable multimedia buttons and application launching all with the click of a button. Who says ergonomics can't be sexy?

Of course, with the sweet must come the sour, and there are several common complaints about this model. One is the white lettering on black keys rubs off quickly. Not only that but the large space bar has a tendency to stick or become difficult to strike over time. In fact, after an extended period of usage, the feedback you feel from all of the keys can make the keyboard noisier and/or more difficult to strike. This can be especially troublesome if it affects your productivity and TATs.

Regrettably, I have had to replace this keyboard twice due to water spills. After following the steps outlined by the collective voice of the internet in an attempt to salvage them, I still had to make the frantic dash to the nearest office supply store for a replacement. Fortunately, the second time this happened I wised up enough to take advantage of their three-year warranty. Microsoft mailed me a replacement keyboard promptly, and said keyboard is now happily sandwiched next to my backup headphones in the bottom of closet, awaiting the next impending, inevitable liquid mishap.

Just a note for the Logitech lovers. I will shamelessly admit that I have had my eye on their Cordless Desktop Comfort Laser Keyboard that is not only a split-key design but cordless. And while Microsoft makes a cordless version of this design, the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic 7000, I have heard rave reviews about the Logitech model and can foresee my probable transition to Logitech based on personal brand preference.

Jessalee has been transcribing off and on for ten years and full time for four of those years. Once of Adventures in Baby Fat, she now blogs at Why, Moxie?, telling it like it is one exaggeration at a time. She is also the owner of Transcription Essentials and mom to two wonderful children, Andy and Bizz. She enjoys spending time with her family, reading, swimming, embroidery and watching movies with her husband, whom she lovingly refers to as Darth. In her own words, her favorite part of the transcription industry is "learning something new each and every day."

If you're interested in contributing a guest post about your keyboard, please contact us at transcriptiontalk (at) yourvirtualdesk (dot) com. We're also open to any transcription-related topics!