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Bill Bennett

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Microsoft Surface 2 keyboard teething trouble

Microsoft’s second stab at making a tablet is a step up from the first time around. It is hard to find fault with the beautifully engineered hardware.

At least it’s hard to find fault with the tablet hardware. I mentioned problems with the keyboard which is just a little too small and the keys a little too close together for comfortable typing.

The experience reminded me why I never got on well with netbooks and find 11-inch laptops cramped.

After finishing the earlier story, I had aches in my arms and lower back. I still do. They could be from sitting cramped over the small keyboard for two or three hours.

Another possible explanation is that the discomfort is a result of controlling things by moving my hands from the keyboard to the touch screen. Or it could be to do with the low-profile no-travel keyboard.

My fault?

Now you could argue the Surface 2 wasn’t built for professional journalists to sit hunched over typing at the keyboard for hour after hour.

I hear you. On the other hand whatever the designer’s purpose, that’s exactly what some people are going to do with a device like this.

To be fair to Microsoft, I have to report I went through something similar when I first began using my iPad as a typewriter. It could just be an adjustment thing.

And I’m partly to blame. Sitting a desk doing nothing by typing for a couple of hours isn’t healthy no matter what equipment you use. Even so, this is something I’m going to need to keep a close eye on.

While we’re on the subject of the keyboard, I found I hit wrong keys more often than normal. I touch type so hitting the odd wrong key is normal.

Hitting the wrong keys can slow down writing as you go back to make corrections, so there’s a small productivity hit. When I’ve done this in the past I’ve found I quickly adjust to the new keyboard and things get back to normal.

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