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What is a keyboard?
We are all familiar with the term keyboard. Keyboards are an important part of a computer. They help us interact with computers. A keyboard is a character input / output device. A keyboard can have 101–120 keys depending on the type of keyboard. A standard Windows keyboard can have 104 keys. A common keyboard consists of a character keypad, function keypad, cursor control keypad, and a numeric keypad. Some specialized keyboards also have multimedia keyboards.
How does a keyboard work?
A keyboard is a kind of computer in itself. It has its own processor, circuit and ROM. The circuit gives information to the processor in the form of charge. The keyboard consists of a key matrix, a group of circuits, which join together to form a key matrix. This grid of circuits extends under the keyboard key. The circuit is broken under every key. When a key is pressed, the circuit is completed, and a small number of current flows. And this phenomenon causes vibrations. These vibrations are called bounces. It is filtered by the bounce processor and it identifies the character or key that has been pressed. When a key is pressed, the processor maps the location of the key with some character map to its ROM. The character map is a comparison chart.
Who invented the keyboard?
The keyboard was invented by Christopher Latham Sholes. The typewriter was invented in 1714 by Henry Mill. But the first typewriter that was commercially successful was created by Christopher Latham Sholes. In fact, the term “type writer” was first developed and patented in 1868 by Christopher Sholes. He, along with a few others, introduced the Qwerty layer on the keyboard, still used in many parts. After that many changes were made to the typewriter.
Then in 1946 the first digital computer ENIAC was introduced with a teletype machine. This teletype machine was used to input data into a computer. The teletype machine punched the holes in the punch card and then inserted into the card reader. It was completely different from the modern keyboard. Later in 1948, BINAC was introduced with an electromagnetic teletype machine. Then years later in 1964, Multix and VDT (video display terminals) were introduced, which allowed users to see what they were typing on the screen while typing. Then in the early 1970s, various upgrades to the keyboard were introduced. In August 1981, IBM introduced the Model F keyboard. Then in 1986, the company released the Model M keyboard, which was very similar to the modern keyboard. It had 101 keys. The keyboard was then subjected to several modifications. One of the biggest was the introduction of a membrane instead of a mechanical switch. The introduction of membranes made keyboard production much easier and cost effective.