Rate These Keyboard Layouts

I am looking for some user input on how good you think each of these keyboard layouts is. Please rate each layout based on the amount of effort you think it takes to type. If you want to know letter frequency, you can find it here. See here, here, here or here for some ideas on what makes a good keyboard layout.

You do not have to answer every question. Any answers are appreciated. Please do not answer any questions more than once. And, of course, feel free to leave comments.

EDIT 8/1/09: I added Phynnboi’s layout at the bottom.

First, take this preliminary poll:

The first layout is the Dvorak layout, which looks like this:

' , . P Y F G C R L
A O E U I D H T N S
; Q J K X B M W V Z

Next is Colemak:

Q W F P G J L U Y ;
A R S T D H N E I O
Z X C V B K M , . /

Capewell Layout:

. Y W D F J P L U Q
A E R S G B T N I O
X Z C V ; K W H , '

Arensito:

Q L , P F U D K
A R E N B G S I T O
Z W H J V C Y M X

There are some unfilled spaces; see here for details.

MTGAP’s Layout 2.0 a.k.a. Oantseri:

, F H D K J C U L .
O A N T G M S E R I
Q X B P Z Y W ' V ;

Klausler’s Evolved Layout:

K , U Y P W L M F C
O A E I D R N T H S
Q . ' ; Z X V G B J

Carpalx Layout:

Q Y L D G B M U W J
R I T O S H A E N ;
X K C V Z P F , . /

Phynnboi’s Layout:

Q Y . ; , J C L F X
H O E A U G T S N R
P / K I Z W D M V B

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  1. phynnboi
    August 1, 2009 at 5:40 am

    I don’t really feel like taking that many polls, so here’s an ordering according to my program, from best to worst:

    (0.28) Klausler
    (0.29) Dvorak
    (0.38) Carpalx
    (0.41) Colemak
    (0.59) MTGAP
    (0.72) Arensito
    (0.74) Capewell
    (1.35) Qwerty

    The number is the overall evaluation of the layout. (My best layout scores 0.05.)

    • August 1, 2009 at 3:02 pm

      Okay, I voted for what I thought you would say. And I added your layout to the mix.

      • phynnboi
        August 2, 2009 at 5:58 am

        That layout scores 0.28, which is respectable, but not my best. Here’s the 0.05 layout:

        Q Y . ; , J C L F X
        H O E A U G T S N R
        P / K I Z W D M V B
        • Jared
          October 8, 2012 at 11:52 pm

          Hi Phynnboi. Do you still use this layout? I just started learning about all this and your layout looks like a winner.

        • WillieNAz
          July 29, 2016 at 4:36 pm

          I like the layout. I think I use a question mark more than the semi-colon so I’d replace yours with a question mark. The semi-colon has always just been a fancy comma to me so it would be the shifted comma and colons are fancy periods so they’d be the shifted period. My theory on keyboard layout is ordering keys based on sound similarity aka q, k, c, s. And harder guttural sounds seem more suited to the right hand and softer vowels for the left hand. Which is also why I’d place a period on the right hand and a question mark for the left hand. The left hand is more artsy, feely, and philosophical. Also ordering keys based on similarity of shapes like a K and X; Q and O; I and L not to mention a little R and B thrown in. And I think the number row needs to shift one to the right to center it more. Those first two keys could be and ( ). And the $ should be above the 5 and probably in line with an S. Keyboard layouts have always been a pet peeve of mine, almost as much as the non Phonetic language we are stuck with.

      • August 2, 2009 at 12:20 pm

        Ah yes, thank you. Fixed.

      • phynnboi
        August 2, 2009 at 4:19 pm

        How is JCLFX “uncomfortable?” If you study the layout for a bit, you’ll see that it’s basically an improved version of Dvorak. Since Dvorak got nothing but “decent” and “solid” votes, I don’t see how JCLFX could score any worse.

      • August 2, 2009 at 4:29 pm

        I was voting based off of the old layout, and I don’t know how to remove votes. IMO, your layout provides an improvement over Dvorak.

  2. phynnboi
    August 2, 2009 at 10:13 pm

    Ah, alright.

  3. October 27, 2009 at 10:43 am

    To me QWERTY is good enough, but please, no CAPS LOCK button!

  4. January 15, 2010 at 6:49 am

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    Moderator’s Note: This is spam, but it’s the most entertaining spam I’ve seen in a while. I let it through, but I changed the web address of the link so that no one will be able to find the spammer’s website.

  5. Atle
    June 30, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    I need to change my vote on Phinnbois layout. It caught me of guard. I didnt realize until after my vote, he intentionally favored the bottom row, instead of the top row. Interesting. I wonder if its better for ‘lazy’ heel-resting typists (like me). (Keep your arms up in the air for hours? Are they kidding me?)

    It bothers me to see frequent letters on the ‘wrong row’, in this case LCF, but overall it could be solid.

    • phynnboi
      April 10, 2012 at 7:50 am

      Pardon the exceptionally late reply: I didn’t even know this page still existed!

      It’s true that I favor the bottom row, but only for the the index and pinky fingers. I favor the top row for the middle and ring fingers. This feels more comfortable for me, and makes the layout feel more “open.” (In contrast, layouts that always favor the top row over the bottom row, like Colemak, tend to feel a bit “cramped” to me).

  6. Atle
    June 30, 2010 at 5:50 pm

    This forum needs an edit button, so I can fix typos like heal. (Curse you IPA phonetic spelling!)

    • June 30, 2010 at 5:57 pm

      I can edit your post; I’m not sure why you can’t edit your own. Anyway, I fixed it.

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