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Characters in the Turtle Keyboard are arranged for efficient use with a  single finger.

The keys arrange automatically around the first contact.

This is an optimised layout that allows quicker typing through swiping motions. Keys are arranged to maximise efficiency in more than one language while maintaining resemblance to a QWERTY layout.

Keys in the inner ring are chosen based on both frequency of use, and frequency at the beginning of words. On the outer ring, sizes vary slightly depending on how common that character is, and how easily it should be accessed.

Most frequent letter (EN)

Most frequent first letter (EN)

Hard-to-reach areas

if a frequently used character is not the first letter, it is very likely to appear second, hence why they should be positioned on opposite spectra.

For an algorithm to work efficiently, vocals and commonly juxtaposed letters need to be far apart. This is why some common characters (like “r”) are positioned on the borders.


Layout Compatibility by Language

Accents play a large role in this piece of data. Languages rich in the use of accents will score lower than others.













Feature-less glass does not provide any feedback regarding the position of your digits, therefore in order to type on a smartphone, you will need to constantly keep an eye on the keyboard. This diminishes our mobility with these devices. In other words, people crash into you while they text and walk because they have no choice but to look at the keys they press.


This layout aims at fixing this issue by projecting the keys around the first point of contact. In other words, the keyboard develops around your finger so that once you are familiar with the layout you won’t have to look at the keyboard anymore. The uniform radius around the centre allows for muscle memory to record the position of keys, as the keyboard maintains proportions across devices.


The secondary purpose of a  circular keyboard is that of allowing typing with only a single finger. Most smartphones are getting larger in size, making

it impossible to type with one hand anymore. The ability to reach across a phone with the thumb approached extinction when 5” screens, or larger, became the norm.


Below are diagrams of the reach of an average-sized right hand holding the device. As you can see, a keyboard that adapts to reach performs much better than one spanning across the screen:

Nexus 6

Nexus 6

Nexus 5/iPhone 6

Nexus 5/iPhone 6

Rounded figures, actual values are 64.13, 33.33, 2.54.

Rounded figures, actual values are 56.25, 31.50, 12.25.

Here’s a few example of the gestures used to type on the Turtle Keyboard.

Try them yourself on your screen or on your desk to experience what it’s like.Your palm should not extend beyond the length of your index or thumb, depending on what finger you use.

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Ultimately, you should be able to type remotely onto external displays:

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Touchscreen keyboards will never be the frontier of efficiency, but being software-based they have greater versatility.Here’s a list of devices that would be compatible with the Turtle layout:






Smartphones are the primary platform for this layout.

Sure you could use it on a tablet too. Nobody holds a tablet in one hand so type with two of them.

For whatever on- screen keyboard you might have enabled, or on gaming controllers.

Ok, touch-mice realistically. A tracked mouse would be very hard to swipe accurately. I feel like this section makes very little sense overall.

Smartwatch screens are very tiny and typing on them is not efficient. If you ever thought that you needed to type on one there is something wrong with you.


This was a weekend project I did when I was sick with a fever in London. Twitter: @albertorizzoli Behance: /arizzoli Website: Thanks for watching.