Tiny Space Bar on Japanese Keyboards

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .
keyboard spacy spacebar 2-s
The Space Bar, spanning 5 keys on Apple laptop keyboard.
〔you can buy SPACEBAR sticker at https://www.etsy.com/uk/listing/191515491/spacebar-batch-number-10-the-original
〔image source https://twitter.com/SimoneGiertz/status/708978187599007744
Apple keyboard Japan
Apple keyboard Japan. Notice the space bar, span about only 3 key spaces. On Apple keyboard US layout, it spans 5 to 6.5, depending on model. 〔►see Apple Keyboards ⌨

Tiny Space Bar on Japanese Keyboards

Because {Chinese, Japanese} don't use space character much, as a interesting consequence, on Japanese keyboards, the Space bar is tiny.

logicool k270 japanese keyboard
LOGICOOL Wireless Keyboard K270. (Logitech is branded as Logicool in Japan) Buy at amazon
japanese keyboard
“Japanese USB wired PC keyboard” Buy at amazon
Japanese keyboard layout
Japanese keyboard layout. image source

the interesting thing about this is that, standard PC keyboard's huge Space bar is really a waste of space. It should be no more than 2 key's width. The rest space can be used for {⌫ Backspace, Return ↩, Alt.}.

Topre Realforce 89s keyboard 10th anniversary 10207
Topre Realforce 89s keyboard 10th anniversary limited keyboard. Topre Realforce Keyboard Japanese Layout 〔image source https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=45011.0

Do We Need Long Spacebar?

practical typewriting spacebar length 14846
Book “practical typewriting”, dated 1990, on spacebar length. 〔source books.google.com〕 〔image source https://twitter.com/mwichary/status/865027750851100672, thanks to Marcin Wichary〕

Typewriter Spacebar History

But why is the spacebar being a bar in the first place?

see Typewriter Spacebar History

Keyboard Designed with Short Space Bar

Here's a example of a keyboard designed with short space bar, yet isn't Japanese layout.

filco majestouch minila keyboard 89676
Filco Majestouch Minila. (Cherry MX Brown switch) Filco Majestouch Minila

For more keyboards with short space bar, see:

See also: Keyboards without Numeric Keypad.

thanks to Jaehyun Yeom for telling me that Korean do use space a lot.

Why Should You Type Space After Comma?

Should You Type Space After Comma?

Keyboard Keys Topic

  1. Keyboard Big Fat Enter Key
  2. Keyboard Home/End Keys Arrangement
  3. Tiny Space Bar on Japanese Keyboards
  4. Keyboard Page Key
  5. Print Screen, SysRq/ScrLk, Pause/Break Keys
  6. Control Key and Capslock Key Positions in Old Keyboards
  7. Keyboard Evolution: Zoom Button, Dedicated Keys
  8. Keyboards with Volume Wheel
  9. Keyboard Modifier Keys, Short Survey
  10. Why Function Keys F1 F2 Are Useful
  11. What's the Use of the Menu Key?
  12. Backspace Key: Key Label's Influence on Key Purpose
  13. Alt Graph Key, Compose Key, Dead Key

Japan keyboards

  1. Japanese Keyboard Layouts
  2. Tiny Space Bar on Japanese Keyboards
  3. Esrille New Keyboard Review
  4. μTRON Keyboard
  5. Japan TRON keyboard
  6. Japan Thumb-Shift Keyboard
  7. NEC 日本電気 M-Type keyboard
  8. Japan Sukerutoron ST-2000 TRON Keyboard
  9. Japanese Hiragana Frequency Table