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Subject:(Fwd) Re: Keyboard vs. mouse From:David Mitchell <mitchell -at- SKY -dot- NET> Date:Wed, 1 Nov 1995 05:26:10 +0000
From: Self <David_Mitchell>
To: mhunterk -at- BNA -dot- COM
Subject: Re: Keyboard vs. mouse
Date: Wed, 1 Nov 1995 05:25:26
> We are planning our documents for a new in-house application. We suspect
> that using the keyboard is faster than using a mouse. If it is, we want
> to slant the doc and training so that users become accustomed to keyboard
> However, we don't have any hard evidence of the difference in speed. Does
> anybody know of a study or article that sheds light on which is faster?
I use keyboard shortcuts and accelerators heavily in Windows, Windows
95, and OS/2. Though I love the Macintosh, its relative lack of
keyboard methods always bothers me. That said, the only hard evidence
I have seen contradicts my findings.
From page 292 of *The Trouble with Computers*...
Many menu-and-mouse-driven interfaces provide alternative
keyboard accelerators--keystroke chords that have the same effect as
a menu selection. These are intended, and believed by most expert
users, to make those who are willing to learn them faster. Tognazzini
(1992) claims the advantage is illusory. He says timing studieies of
experts invoking commnads by key chords and mouse with menus find
them equally fast. He claims the keystroke method just *seems* faster
because of a perceptual phenomenon by which time appears to run
slower when it is occupied by things you consciously see and think
about, such as menu alternatives and cursor movement on the screen.
*The Trouble with Computers* by Thomas K. Landauer (MIT Press.
This book contains a great number of valuable insights, most of them
backed by actual research, a much-needed breath of stale air in the
fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants computer industry,