Anthropometrics - The study of the
physical characteristics of an individual, specifically the
height, weight, length and proportion of each of their body
parts, to understand and take into account physical variation
when evaluating and designing products.
Zone - The comfort zone of an individual refers to a
prescribed physical area where they can comfortably reach
and perform repetitive activities without excessive strain
- The bending at the ankle of the foot
upwards towards the leg, typically reducing the angle
formed by the foot and leg to typically less than 90
Embedded Numeric Keypad - A numeric
keypad which solely resides on the second layer of a
keyboard and is accessed through a shift
access or toggle
access. Instead of having dedicated physical
keys and space allocated to it typically to the right of
the enter key, the 10-key functions are enabled once
access is granted. The primary benefits of this are
a smaller footprint for the keyboard. Note: This
does not refer to the number
row on a keyboard.
Ergonomic Professional - An individual
trained in one of several academic and/or practical studies
of ergonomics. Some of the most common ergonomic
professionals include Ergonomists, Kinesiologists (Kins),
Occupational Therapists (OTs) and Human Factor Engineers.
Abduction - To move the elbow away from the midline of
the body, typically by use of muscles in the shoulder.
- The row of function keys at the top of a keyboard, above the
Number row, i.e. F1, F2, F3 etc.
Gas Spring - A spring which uses compressed gas contained in a cylinder and compressed by a piston to pneumatically exert a force. Common applications include height adjustment in seating products, premium monitor arms, and foot rests.
Hunt-and-Peck Typist - An individual who must identify the location
of each key on the keyboard by sight before targeting with
their finger. Typically these users will use only
their 2nd finger when typing, and must routinely check the
results of their typing on the screen to ensure no errors
have been generated.
Directly in front of the individual, i.e. when facing forward
perpendicular to the plane of the body. When referring
to placement of reference material, this would refer to
putting documents above the keyboard and below the monitor,
eliminating the need to reach to either side.
Pitch - The space from the
left edge of one keycap on a
keyboard to the next. 19.4 mm is the standard key
pitch found on most keyboards today with the exception of
children's keyboards, mini-keyboards and some keyboards
embedded in portable devices
(laptops and netbooks).
Load Balancing -
Balancing the workload for a task between all available
methods, for example using both hands to perform a task
instead of just the dominant hand. When mousing, this
would refer to using both hands to mouse. When
keyboarding, it can refer to using the number row at the top
of the keyboard (to allow two-handed numeric input) instead of
a numeric keypad (which is typically only the right hand).
Midline - The median plane of the
body, i.e. a line from the top to the bottom of an individual,
through the nose, which delineates the right and left half of
Mousing Area - The physical area or footprint on the work surface required
by a user to control the mouse when the acceleration is set at
an appropriate level for the tasks the user is trying to
perform. For most contemporary computer users who have
monitors which have a display resolution set at a minimum of
1024x768, the absolute minimum mousing area is 6" wide x 8"
Number Row -
The line of numbers at top of a keyboard, above the QWERTY row
and below the Function Row.
These are not the numbers in the numeric keypad (which are
typically arranged in a grid similar to a calculator).
Plantarflexion - movement at the ankle joint that points the foot downwards away from the leg, or movement of the toes that curls them down towards the sole (compare to dorsiflexion)
Positively Inclined - This refers to when the plane of an object (e.g. a keyboard
or keyboard tray) raises as one moves away from the
user. For example a positively inclined keyboard has
Function keys (F1, F2, F3, etc.) at a higher elevation than
the space bar, which results in the fingertips being higher
than the palms when using the keyboard.
- Refers to a keyboard action which requires
the user to hold down a modifier key and then press another
key in order to generate the desired keystroke.
Access - Refers to a
keyboard action which requires the user to press and
release a modifier key and then press another key in order
to generate the desired keystroke.
Typist - An individual who
has developed muscle memory and has memorized the location
of all the keys on the keyboard. This allows this user
to 'type by touch' and in theory, these users can often type
in a completely dark room or on a keyboard where all the
legends have worn off the keys.