As a computer teacher I occasionally have to do some research regarding computers and keyboards to support my work in the classroom.
Now for those people who have only ever used one keyboard layout let me explain that around the world there are a number of different alphabets and many different languages. Creating different keyboards for each country, language and alphabet could have been a big problem for computer keyboard factories so the early computer hardware designers came up with a solution. Now in the early days of computers there were many cartoons published that have found their way into school textbooks about the conflicts and battles that took place between computer hardware designers and computer software programmers. To create one physical keyboard for everyone the computer hardware designers started with the keyboard of the typewriter and designed the IBM Enhanced 101 key keyboard. Now before you go counting how many keys there are on your keyboard let me advise you that many computer manufacturers have modified the original designs. So getting back to the original question of which keyboard is used in Canada we have to consider some facts. For the past few decades the Canadian federal government has been encouraging a policy of multiculturalism with the intent that if new immigrants maintain some of their culture and foreign language skills they can act as our sales representatives in international trade with their homeland. French language instruction in the form of a single course each year, or something more intensive, is provided to the students in many English language schools. Occasionally Canadians will borrow a word or phrase from the other official language to include in something they are typing.
Reflecting on the above two paragraphs the Canadian English language keyboard must have the capability to type the French language accent marks.
Canadaa€™s aboriginal population is now vastly outnumbered by all of the immigrants who have arrived over the past few centuries. There are many different aboriginal languages in Canada and some communities or regions have developed their own dialect of an aboriginal language.
As a teacher working in many English language schools and aboriginal schools across Canada I have seen very few keyboards with syllabics markings on the keys for typing an aboriginal language. Similar to the syllabics keyboards that display on a computer screen I have seen software settings on computers that can allow you to type using the keyboards of many other alphabets, languages and countries.
Whenever I go shopping on the Internet and look at Apple Macintosh computers for sale in Canada I am given a choice of buying a Canadian English or a Canadian French keyboard. I have been aware for a few years now that at least theoretically according to the Internet there are official sounding keyboard layouts with names such as CSA and Multilingual Canadian keyboard design. What I have received is government education department instructions that in classrooms where the students are being taught in English the teachers and students should be using the full extended Canadian English keyboard with number pad. The hundreds of used computers that were donated to northern Canadian schools and libraries by government offices and businesses that I have helped set up almost always came with a Canadian English language keyboard. This keyboard is based on the original 101 key layout of the IBM Enhanced keyboard but now has 104 keys.
This keyboard is based on the original 101 key layout of the IBM Enhanced keyboard but has 109 keys. Apple Canada also sells a much smaller keyboard with fewer keys for their Macintosh computers that is not recommended for use in Canadian schools.
My drawing of the Canadian English keyboard for the Windows and Linux operating systems with no markings on the keys. My drawing of the Canadian English keyboard for the Linux and Windows operating systems with all of the keys labelled.
In the very first keyboard diagram up above you can see the Windows waving flag logo on two of the keys and the menu logo on one key.
My drawing of the Canadian English keyboard for the Macintosh Operating System with no markings on the keys.


My drawing of the Canadian English keyboard for the Macintosh Operating System with all of the keys labelled. To check whether your keyboard is a QWERTY keyboard, just take a look a the first six keys on the top left. The following diagram is the same as the one above, except that this one is labeled for your benefit.
For a detailed explanation of what each key does, read this article on computer keyboard keys.
Swirly Bracket What the heck is the real name for the symbol "{" teachers use it on the board all the time but no one seems to know the real name please help!
What can I use instead of the Enter Key What can I use alternative when enter button dont work on keyboard? Block 12, Xinhe Village, Xingye Industrial Park, Fuhai Road, Fuyong Town, Bao'an District, Shenzhen, Guangdong Province. Slideshare uses cookies to improve functionality and performance, and to provide you with relevant advertising.
Clipping is a handy way to collect and organize the most important slides from a presentation. During my research I have come across some controversy in the international community regarding which keyboard layout is used in Canada.
To further complicate the situation many countries have at least one or two special keys, such as the currency symbol for their money, that needs to be included on their keyboard. By intending to design just one physical keyboard for everyone the computer hardware designers were passing the original problem over to the computer software programmers to solve.
The keyboard worked well for United States English but the people of the British Isles decided they needed 102 keys for the British English keyboard. For laptop computers they have tried to reduce the number of keys by removing some duplication so a laptop computer may only have about 89 keys.
Therefore we need to have some keyboards and computers available in our country that immigrants and sales staff can use to type a variety of international languages. Most of the population speaks English but there are French or bilingual communities of various sizes scattered throughout the country. I presume a similar form of English language instruction is provided for students in French language schools. The use of accent marks is the main difference between the two languages as far as a keyboard is concerned. Most of Canada's population now lives in towns and cities that are near our southern border with the United States of America.
Therefore many Canadian businesses will want to use the same keyboards and computers as their American business trading partners to make communication easier. Geographically though, most of the map of Canada, including all of the northern regions, is still predominantly bare of human settlement.
To complicate the situation it was the early church missionaries representing a few different religions from Europe who first transcribed the oral aboriginal languages into a written form and then taught the aboriginals to read and write. Instead what I have seen is software programs on school computers that displayed a large syllabics keyboard across the bottom part of the computer screen with a simple word processor above it.
Therefore I could use my Canadian English keyboard but have it behave and type in a word processing program as if I were using a German, Spanish, French or Italian keyboard. As a teacher trained and responsible for teaching Typing, Keyboarding and Computer courses I have never received any communication from education or government officials about such keyboards or any diagrams of what they should look like. The keyboards for the Macintosh, Windows and Linux computers should be identical or almost identical and interchangeable.


All of the new computer keyboards that were purchased by the schools where I taught were Canadian English language keyboards unless someone specifically required a different keyboard. The two Windows Logo keys and the Menu key on the bottom row of the keyboard are the extra three keys that were added to the original 101 key design. Can you spot all of the differences between this keyboard and the keyboard for the Windows Operating System?
One reason for rejecting the smaller keyboard is concerns over how compatible it will be when used with software and hardware designed for the other operating systems.
This time I used the Linux black diamond called a Meta or Super key instead of trying to draw the Windows logo. If you have an Apple computer then the keyboard will be similar, but won't include keys such as a Window key or Print Screen key. It is very beneficial to your own computer understanding, to know the keyboard and how it works. All of these different needs of countries, languages and alphabets means that you should see many different layouts of keys on computer keyboards if you were to travel around the world.
Then by just changing the symbols marked on top of the keys they could use the keyboard in any country for any alphabet and language around the world.
When a person using the computer presses the fifty-seventh key on the keyboard there would need to be programming code in the computer software to know what symbol had been marked on top of the key for that persona€™s country, alphabet and language. For desktop computers with a full keyboard often extra keys have been added to control things such as the brightness and contrast of the screen, the volume of the speakers, and controls for playing music and movies on a CD or DVD.
As many Canadians regularly cross the border to shop it only makes sense that they will buy and bring home computers and keyboards from the United States to use in their homes. There are only a few tiny little dots representing isolated, aboriginal communities scattered across the vast majority of the Canadian map surface.
Unfortunately the missionaries did not all use the same alphabet for the aboriginal languages so today we have the situation where one Cree speaking community may be using a Latin based alphabet similar to English or French while another Cree community with the same spoken language may be using syllabics as their written alphabet.
Students in a Native Language class such as Cree, Dene or Inuktitut are then able to use their computer mouse clicking on the syllabic keyboard on the computer screen. I would have to watch the little diagram of a keyboard on the screen to know which keys to press when typing in another language.
That way the teachers and students will only need to learn keyboarding skills using one keyboard design rather than having to use different keyboards for different types of computers in different classrooms during the school day.
There is also the consideration that students and teachers would find it more difficulty trying to learn and practice their keyboarding skills if they had to switch between the smaller Apple keyboards and full size keyboards as they moved around a school using different computers. A detailed map of the keyboard layout for many different countries, alphabets and languages now had to be included in the software programming code. Fortunately all of the other countries, alphabets and languages around the world were able to adapt and use one of the three designs, either the 101 key, the 102 key or the 106 key keyboard by just changing the markings on top of the keys. The two Cree speaking communities would each require very different markings on the keys of their keyboards to type in their own language. Alternatively the students and Native Language teachers can type on a regular Canadian English keyboard by watching the syllabics keyboard markings on their computer screen so they know which keys to press. So what turns out to be a simple solution for the computer hardware engineers creates a lot of extra work for the computer software programmers. However if you would like more information on the keys and keyboard shortcuts visit this article.



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