AN AMAZING FACT: Credit for the first modern typewriter belongs to Christopher Sholes, a newspaper editor who lived in Milwaukee in the 1860s. On the Sholes and Remington, as on present-day manual typewriters, each character was set on the end of a metal bar that struck the paper when its key was pressed. The keys were arranged alphabetically.
But there was a snag. When an operator had learned to type at a fast speed, the bars attached to letters that lay close together on the keyboard became entangled with one another. One way out of the difficulty was to find out which letters were most often used and then place them on the keyboard as far from each other as possible. This had the effect of reducing the chance of clashing type bars. This was how the QWERTY keyboard was born, named after the first six letters on the top line. It first became popular on the Remington No. 2, which came out in 1878.
The first typewriter by Sholes was made with the help of his friends Carlos Glidden and Samuel W. Soule, and was patented in October 1867. Instead of four rows of keys, this typewriter only had two rows. The top line was: – 3 5 7 9 N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z. The bottom line was: 2 4 6 8 . A B C D E F G H I J K L M. The letter arrangement changes took place over five years with several trial-and-error arrangements.
Today millions of modern computer keyboards are still using this cumbersome letter design. Studies have shown that it is helpful to have a variety of words spelled with letters used by both the left and right hand in order to give each hand a moment of rest and readiness to find the next key to press. But the QWERTY layout tends to favor the left hand, which is helpful for left-handed people but a disadvantage to right-handed operators. Though other layouts have been suggested, the QWERTY design still hangs on. Old habits are hard to break!
In a clash with the scribes and Pharisees, Jesus’ disciples were accused of transgressing the “tradition of the elders” regarding the proper way to wash hands before eating bread. But Christ challenged them by asking, “Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition?” (Matthew 15:3). When the Bible gives us clear instruction, we should set aside our own preconceived ideas. The correct way to do things is God’s way!
KEY BIBLE TEXTS
Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. Matthew 15:2