Today I could no longer take the wrist pain that develops while typing so I purchased the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000.
Not that I like Microsoft very much; on the contrary, their gorilla tactics, legal tactics and marketing tactics all leave me wanting for other options. However, the reviews on this type of keyboard were quite positive, I was at Office Max anyway, and I was desperate.
The pain from repetitive strain injury is alarmingly chronic: It doesn’t go away for a long time, and mine has been with me for much of the past year. Most of my achiness was coming from having my hands cocked at a funny angle over a very flat laptop keyboard. The 4000 lays out the keys so that my hands are in a much less strained position, almost as if I’m trying to shake hands with the keyboard rather than lay them flat. Although the photo doesn’t show it well, the middle keys (the ones nearest my index fingers) rest on a hill higher than the keys nearest my pinkies. It took me all of twenty minutes to get used to that hill and the obviously split keyboard.
The reduction in pain was almost immediate, and I recommend this to anyone suffering from even the slightest wrist pain – it will only get worse. Now, if only they would bring back those tactile, spring-loaded keys like they had on the IBM Selectric typewriters. Those were the best.