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Cherry MX turns 38

Cherry's genre-defining MX switches turn 38 years today.

While some decision-makers at Cherry deserve a running kick in the groin for naming their ultra low profile SMD switch "MX" despite its incompatibility, let's focus on the birthday of the original MX now.

Whether you love or loathe them, these switches made history without a shadow of a doubt.

It would be nice from Cherry to provide more details. E.g. I thought the MX switch was first marketed in 1985. Maybe this "birthday" refers to a first patent or something like that.

When the German institute of standards (DIN) as the first regulator realizing the importance of standardization and keyboard ergonomics (e.g. lower profile) set up a committee, a panel of manufacturers and users, to come up with new ideas for keyboard design in 1984(?) (source) Cherry already had been working on a "low profile" witch.

The new target height of 3 cm, defined by the panel, measured at the middle/home row, was impossible to achieve with most older keyswitches, so Cherry's MX switch became one of the first solutions. Practically, it was the low profile switch of the time.

Happy birthday!

Published on Sun 22nd Aug 2021. Featured in KBD #40 (source).


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