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October 10, 2007

Here's a challenge

Spend a day or so using the web without your keyboard.

Then let me know what you learned about the web.

October 10, 2007 | Permalink


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Haven't done that, but I have spent several evenings surfing on Nintendos Wii and DS. Both work fine. The on-screen keyboards are sufficient for entering occasional search terms and URLs.

Using a PC without a keyboard would be painful, but an OSK would be sufficeint for most surfing.

Posted by: Geoff | Oct 10, 2007 11:21:24 PM

I can't even deal with not using a mouse, let alone a keyboard

Posted by: Cheryl | Oct 11, 2007 9:28:40 AM

I think a better challenge would be using the web without a mouse or trackpad. Keyboard shortcuts and command keys are far more efficient. Now, if only I could remember most of them...

Posted by: AJ | Oct 12, 2007 6:12:36 AM

Erm... did you really mean 'without a keyboard'? Surely it should be 'with only a keyboard' as in 'let's see how many sites cater for keyboard-only users'?

Posted by: Ian Lloyd | Oct 12, 2007 10:02:40 AM

No, I mean without a keyboard ;-)

Posted by: John Allsopp | Oct 12, 2007 11:38:22 AM

by the way. Just wondering how folks are replying without their keyboards :-)

Posted by: john | Oct 12, 2007 7:31:43 PM

Hmmmm, well I wouldn't be able to reply to any emails, leave comments or search for new terms; but I would be able to passively read everything with saved logins in my browser (that would mean no online banking). I could get around a lot of information that way.

Actually I just realised Windows XP comes with an on screen keyboard; so I could do whatever I wanted. It's just painfully slow!
(use the on screen kb for that last par - took ages)

I guess if I really had a mobility issue I'd opt for dictation rather than clicking an on-screen keyboard.

The other thought is that this isn't all that different from mobile phone browsing. The less text you have to enter on a mobile, the better.

Posted by: Ben Buchanan | Oct 12, 2007 11:54:51 PM


you win the prize!

All of a sudden, entering text becomes really painful and slow, if possible at all. The underlying point of my question is, how big a deal for you is that?

I've been using my iPod Touch for a lot of browsing lately, but the one drawback is that entering text is a pain - not because of the onscreen keyboard, which is actually pretty efficient, but because of the design of input fields, and in part due to the way mSafari interacts with them.

So, I realised a big part of my web use is actually creating content - on my blogs, comments on other people's blogs, and so on. Thats a part of interface design I've not seen much if focus on at all - but one I am increasingly interested in.

Working on a detailed overview of the mSafari experience - see it's just like using a browser on your desktop - only completely different


Posted by: John Allsopp | Oct 13, 2007 7:23:07 AM

You should spend a day using the web without a keyboard.

You would experience the poor usability of websites made with Flash or using javascript-links.

And tabindexes on framesets are a completely pain in the a**.

Posted by: Peter | Oct 16, 2007 6:05:46 AM


yet another good reason to do it.


Posted by: John Allsopp | Oct 16, 2007 7:34:52 AM

Hopefully in the next day I could'nt make a comment here.

Posted by: low cost websites | Jan 25, 2010 9:51:09 PM

Challenge accepted, I wonder if you can post the rules!

Posted by: 4rx | Oct 27, 2011 3:55:19 AM

It`s extremely hard not to use the keyboard, it makes you use the mouse alone, can`t really do anything beside getting into marked news-sites or playing solitaire.

Posted by: Mami Designs | Oct 28, 2011 11:58:52 PM

use a computer without a keyboard is so hard! seriously!

Posted by: best pharmacy | Nov 11, 2011 3:41:53 AM