Monday, January 11, 2010

All Keyed Up

For whatever reason, I looked down at my laptop keyboard the other day and realized that some serious wear was taking place. The following letters are almost gone, replaced by dark gray smudges: e, a, s. The t, r, n, and d have serious issues also. The left 'shift' key is scratched, the right one untouched because I never learned to shift with my right pinkie. The numbers look good and the F-keys are pristine, since I've never bothered to learn what they do. The F-keys, not the numbers.

I would think the delete key would be worn since it's a favorite of mine, but it's not.

I looked up the frequency of the most commonly used letters and found that Mr. Morse, in inventing his telegraph code, used this string taken from the frequency of letters in English text to make it simpler for his transcribers: etaoin shrdlu. My letters are in there. But if you used letters contained in English vocabulary, the list becomes eariot nslcud. Again, I've made the top 12, but barely.

I got lost in the Ask Oxford site. I do not recommend you click through unless you've time to spare. As to the wear on my keys, it's a good thing I'm a letter-touch typist.

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