The earliest typewriter keys in the 1860's were arranged in the order of the Latin alphabet, but were found lacking for a variety of mechanical reasons in the earliest machines. The origins of the QWERTY keyboard that succeeded it are murky - and appear to have lasted this long only because so many people have learned to touch-type that way for generations.
Technology appears to be on the verge of allowing alternatives to QWERTY that would cut the keyboard loose from its Latin moorings. Apple Computer is said to be developing a new keyboard for its laptops that will be able to operate in any alphabet, and carry an unlimited number of emojis. Courtesy The Wall Street Journal.