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KEYBOARD (Computing) | Types, distribution, parts and operation

He keyboard In computer science it is a peripheral that is always part of computers because it is an input device necessary for interaction with the equipment. We explain what a keyboard is, the types, parts, functions and more.

You can read more aboutPARTS OF A COMPUTER | What they are and what they are for?

What is a keyboard?

A keyboard in computer science it is a peripheral or input device, which arises from the inspiration of the typewriter keyboard, highlighting that it uses a certain arrangement of the buttons or keys, so that they act as mechanical levers or electronic switches, which will be sending information to the computer as long as they are pressed.

Types of keyboards

By the physical form of the keyboard the types are:

Ergonomic keyboard Its design is designed more than anything else in the comfort of the user, so the position of the arms is facilitated so that it is more relaxed.

Multimedia keyboard This type includes special keys so that the call of certain computer programs is immediate as if it were a shortcut. In these cases they are programs such as calculator, email, media player, among others.

Flexible keyboard They are keyboards of a very soft plastic or silicone that can bend over themselves. Due to their condition, they easily adapt to surfaces that are irregular, in addition to resisting liquids more.

On-screen keyboard On-screen keyboards are a constant today. They used to be called virtual keyboards. They are used more than anything on mobile devices.

Projection keyboards They are one of the same size as a standard keyboard, but they use laser. They connect via USB, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.

The types of keyboard by the technology of the keys are:

  • Rubber dome keyboards.
  • Membrane keyboards.
  • Capacitive keyboards.
  • Metal contact keyboards.
  • Mechanical keyboards.

The keyboard types per connection port are:

  • Keyboard with connector.
  • Keyboard with DIN or PS / 2 connector.
  • Keyboard with USB connector.
  • Wireless keyboard

Keyboard key distribution

The keyboard layout It varies according to the languages, it is for this reason that the distribution will be modified according to this parameter, where the explanation is given because it is not the same to write in different languages, without forgetting that the letters or signs Grammaticals may vary.

Refering to standard distribution of the keys on a keyboard responds to the so-called QWERTY keyboard As it is known in English. It is a distribution that is commonly used in Western countries and that considers the Latin alphabet.

Anyway, there are variants for the QERTY keyboard to meet the particular needs of adaptation to languages ​​and countries, where there are slight modifications to the QWERT keyboard of Spain and the Latin American version. In these two cases the key is added which is typical of Spanish, in addition to the characters of acute, serious accent, diresis and circumflex. For the Spanish distribution is the cedilla ce.

Parts of a keyboard

Function keys They are keys that as a whole are located in the upper area and that go from the key that contains a F1 until the F12. When pressing them, different shortcuts are applied within the computer system and depending on the program that is executed. There is also a key to cancel operations or exit programs called escape (Esc).

Control keys They can be used alone or in combination with other keys. They allow to control different programs. Among the most prominent are control (Ctrl), alternator (Alt), Shift, Enter, Tab and in certain cases it is included escape.

Alphanumeric keys They are those that address a greater space on the keyboard and are very similar to the keyboard of a typewriter, thinking that they are all the letters of the alphabet, the succession of the numbers, punctuation marks and the accentuation. It also includes the space bar, delete and an Enter.

Numeric keypad It is a group that is located in the right area of ​​the keyboard and in a small space is the succession of numbers from 1 to 0, as well as the signs of the four basic operations.

Special keys They are a type of keys that are in an intermediate zone of the keyboard, between the alphanumeric and numerical keyboard (although it can be different depending on the model). Its function is to edit texts and apply some special functions. Among them are: Imp, Pant, scrolling lock, start, pause, repg, avpg.

Scroll keys It is a set of 4 keys with cursors to move in all four directions in applications or programs. They are widely used in video games, although they sometimes move to the letters W, A, S and D.

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Keyboard operation

A keyboard in computer science it has a matrix of contacts, so as soon as a key is pressed the circuit will close. It is a microcontroller that detects the pressure of that specific key, in order to generate a code. The moment the key is released, an additional code will be generated. That is why the chip located on the keyboard board is going to be pressed and released, so that it is acted upon or interpreted accordingly. Regarding the generated codes are called Sweep Codes.

Upon detecting that there is pressure on the key, the scanning codes are generated and sent serially through a cable, wireless connection or whatever type, to reach the motherboard of the PC. In this place the code is received by the microcontroller or keyboard Bios, being a chip that compares the scan code with that corresponding to a table of characters.

You can continue reading:Symbols and special characters on the keyboard

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