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Definition: Enhanced keyboard

A 101-key keyboard (U.S. layout) from IBM that superseded the PC/XT and AT keyboards. Introduced in 1985 as the Model M and standard on IBM's PS/2 computer, the Enhanced keyboard was used for more than a decade and continues to be used in its Windows keyboard variant.

The Enhanced keyboard relocated the Control, Alt and function keys, and many fast typists were extremely unhappy about the changes. In 1995, the Enhanced layout was superseded by the Windows keyboard, which uses the same layout plus three specialized Windows keys (see Windows keyboard). See PC keyboard.

Separate Cursor Keys
The major Enhanced keyboard improvement was the addition of a separate bank of cursor keys alongside the numeric/cursor keypad. (Image courtesy of Das Keyboard, www.daskeyboard.com)

The Control Key Blunder
Widely used in word processing, Control was moved from its convenient location next to the A key to an awkward location. This was a huge nuisance until users learned how to switch it back (see Control key).

Fix Them All
The Enhanced keyboard moved the function keys from columns on the left to a row on top, but the Avant Stellar keyboard was one of the rare keyboards that provided both old and new layouts. See Avant Stellar keyboard.