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Publication numberUS606903 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 5, 1898
Filing dateFeb 17, 1897
Publication numberUS 606903 A, US 606903A, US-A-606903, US606903 A, US606903A
InventorsBates Torrey
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Keyboard for type-writers
US 606903 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

No. 606,903. Ratented July 5, I898.


KEYBOARD FOR TYPE WRITERS. (Application filed Feb. 17,1897.)

(No Model) 'kwwww mmwuwl figiliillillll lillllllilw l ll lll ll l l ll ll ll f WITNESSES J IVTOR Lfl L 1 Ill LJ (m LI El L I fir fig- X'M- ATTORNEYS.

- groups of keys, (indicated by A and 13,) each Nirnn STATES ATENT Fries.


SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Patent No. 606,903, dated July 5, 1898.

Application filed February 1'7, 1897. Serial No. 623,908- (No model.)

To aZZ whom it may concern:

Be it known that I, BATES TORREY, a citizen of the United States, residing at Weymouth, in the county of Norfolk and State of Massachusetts, have invented anew and Improved Form of Keyboard for Type-WVriting Machines, of which the following is a specification.

It is the object of my invention to attain maximum efiiciency in touch-writing by whatis known as the all-finger method.

My invention relates to the arrangement of keys hereinafter described for promoting convenience of attack or touch by the fingers,it being suited to the best exertions of the latter by conforming to the anatomical structure of the hand, and also for enabling the operator to locate the difierent keys or letters with ease and certainty when writing, so that type-writing by touch or without the necessity of visual inspection of the keyboard is made practicable.

In the accompanying drawings, Figure 1 is a perspective view of my improved keyboard. Fig. 2 is a diagrammatic end view of a row of keys, showing their arrangement in socalled arched form. Fig. 3 is a plan View of the keyboard. Fig. 4 is a plan view indicating the location of letters on the several keys.

I divide the keyboard centrally and transversely into two equal parts, or right and left part or group containing four parallel rows 1 2 3 4 of lower-case-letter keys, four in each row. Besides these sixteen keys there are two other keys 5 and 6, arranged side by side between the front rows of the respective right and left groups A B, the same being so placed as to be conveniently attacked by the operators thumbs. These two keys are for space and capitals, and they project forward or toward the operator a distance which should be at least equal to the width of the other adjacent lower-case-letter keys. This arrangement corresponds to the anatomical location or relation of the thumbs to the other four digits of the hands, and the thumbs are applied solely for spacing and shifting to upper case or capitals. It will be seen that while the operators thumbs rest on these two front and central keys 5 6 the other four fingers have easy access to the four keys of the four rows 1 2 3 4, the keys of the second row are elevated slightly above those of the first or front row, the third above the second, and the'fourth above the third," as shown in Fig. 1.. v

The keys of each group AB are so placed (see Fig. 3) that any keyin the third or fourth row (3 or 4:) is farther from the transverse center of the board than the corresponding key in the row below it, so that, as respects the' keys of the second, third, and fourth rows, they are in oblique alin ement. This obliquity is for the purpose of favoring the application of the fingers that are alone employed to 0perate them and to enable the operator to locate the keys of each row more quickly and certainly than would be possible if the usual arrangement were preserved.

. A peculiarity of my invention is the arrangement of the keys of each group A and B in what may be termed arched form-that is to say, as shown in Figs. 1 and 2 the two middle keys of each of the lengthwise rows 1 2 3 4 are slightly higher than the two adjacent or outer keys,'which are practically in the same horizontal plane. This arched form corresponds to the natural shape or concavity of the hand and increases the facility of operation. It is thus apparent that I provide a distinct territory, so to speak,for each hand, that the position of the hands is not materially shifted while operating, that such position is defined by the location of the thumbs on the cap and space keys 5 and 6, and that this and the terrace-like and oblique arrangement of the lower-case keys of each group A and B enable the operator to instantly determine the exact location of each letter-key Without the aid of sight, while the arched form of each group further promotes facility and consequent ease and rapidity of manipulation.

Respecting certain details I will further state that I preferably employ "square-top keys and place the rows (transverse and lon-- gitudinal) one-fourth inch apart,while the el= evation of each of the three upper terraces is about three-sixteenths of an inch above the one below it It is an imperative requirement of this keyboard that the keys 5 and 6, marked Caps and Space, Fig. 4, shall be depressed by the thumbs alone; but if there be necessity for a figure shift for some type-writing machines it shall be effected by some one of the bottom row of keys, preferablyakey located next to the thumb-keys and for the left hand.

As shown in Fig. 3, certain of the lower-case keys are shaded black and others half black, while the rest are white. This is for the purpose of locating and memorizing a manual of letters when the actual letters may not be indicated on the keys.

I also employ an improved letter arrangement. The one most current is unquestionably left-handed, since on a basis of one thousand Es the left hand is obliged to make over fifteen hundred more strokes than the right hand, whereas by my letter arrangement (shown in Fig. 4) there is an excess of only about two hundred strokes for one hand over the other on a basis of one thousand ES, and this excess is for the right hand, which is usually the stronger and more manageable and therefore the better able to endure the strain. Again, the order adopted is remarkably free from danger of awkward letter sequences, the high average letters are located for the stronger fingers, the liquids and co alescents are convenientlyarranged, and only comparatively infrequent letters remain for the weaker fingers.

It is to be further understood that the keyboard may be enlarged by addition of more keys or rows of keys for letters or numerals, if necessity requires,while retaining the essentials of the arrangement hereinbefore stated.

That I claim is 1. The improved keyboard for type-Writing machines, comprising right and left groups of keys, there being four rows of four keys each, and the central keys of each row being elevated above the others on each side, so that the group presents an arched form, as shown and described for the purpose specified.

The improved all-finger keyboard, comprising two right and left groups of keys arranged in alined rows, four in each row, the central keys being elevated to form an arch as specified, and each of the keys back of the front row being arranged diagonally from the one in front of it, and two supplemental keys located between the two divisions of the front row and projecting forward from the same, to provide for application of the thumbs, as and for the purpose specified.




Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3109536 *Feb 25, 1960Nov 5, 1963Lanston Ind IncMatrix case
US3698532 *Aug 21, 1969Oct 17, 1972Dodds IrvineKeyboard for a typewriter
US3698533 *Jun 15, 1970Oct 17, 1972Bell Telephone Labor IncKeyboard arrangement
US7083342Feb 24, 2004Aug 1, 2006Griffin Jason TKeyboard arrangement
US7439959Jul 30, 2004Oct 21, 2008Research In Motion LimitedKey arrangement for a keyboard
US7819598Sep 1, 2005Oct 26, 2010Research In Motion LimitedKeyboard arrangement
US8259074Aug 29, 2008Sep 4, 2012Research In Motion LimitedKey arrangement for a keyboard
US8419303Sep 16, 2010Apr 16, 2013Research In Motion LimitedKeyboard with overlaid numeric phone keypad
USD774033 *Sep 15, 2014Dec 13, 2016Amazon Technologies, Inc.Keypad
Cooperative ClassificationH01H2217/028, B41J5/10