qwertyvsdvorak (ThoughtStorms)

Discussion on whether QWERTY was really an inferior standard to Dvorak keyboard : http://www.independent.org/tii/news/990403Liebowitz.html

Evidence seems to go like this :

And the strongly implied conclusions :


On 1), BradDeLong comments that if we don't know which keyboard was better, that is itself a MarketFailure, because the market failed to discover it. here

OTOH it might just be that neither is substantially better, so market selection in this case is just random drift.

But in that case, there is still something going on, because the market for keyboards isn't split roughly 50 / 50 between QWERTY and Dvorak. So the evidence still shows that, at least in the absense of other selective pressure, there are PositiveFeedback, winner-takes-all effects in the market.

See also :