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Microsoft Pushes Keyboards for Comfort

Boot Camp feature for Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Microsoft pushes keyboards for comfort. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. It has been more than a decade since Microsoft first came out with its Natural keyboard with a split, curved design. The idea is to help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome….and reduce strain. Now the company is out with what it calls the Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. Dan Odell is a staff ergonomist….affectionately known as Dr. Dan around Microsoft…

"And I personally am really excited about this keyboard because it's the first major ergonomic breakthrough that we've offered in ten years…since the Natural line of keyboards came out." Now describe for us how it is different. It looks like the front end of it is raised up.. "This keyboard is really designed to do two things for you. Number one, it's designed to improve your wrist posture and number two, it's designed to try to make it easier on your fingers while you're typing. So the first thing that you notice is the palm lift on the front of the keyboard. And what that's designed to do is push people's palms up while they're typing, to prevent them from dropping them down."

When it comes to repetitive strain injuries…some people get them more easily than others. Women, are more susceptible than men. And more time at the keyboard is more risk. The suggested price for the Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 400 is 65 dollars. Another new model is the Comfort Curve Keyboard 2000. It looks a little less radical….takes less getting used to and sells for about 25 dollars.