You need to enter the mind of a child to find it.

The unassuming computer keyboard is full of history, from its qwerty arrangement, originally developed to prevent typewriters from jamming, to its “Break” key which has become useless to most people – notable exceptions including that guy in the movie Pi.

Even the “Return” from old typewriters that sent the carriage to the beginning of the next line has almost completely been renamed “Enter” as its use shifted to include executing processes and the word “return” seemed somewhat counter-intuitive.

But nowadays, this newer use of the enter key has largely taken a back seat to a click of the mouse or tap of the touchscreen, so perhaps another new name is in order? And perhaps writer/illustrator Celeron Yamada’s (@Celeron_ymd) sister has the right idea.

As Yamada explains, her sister was trying to explain to a child where the enter key, which on their computer isn’t labeled, was located. At a loss, she said the “Kyushu button” instead and the child instantly knew what she was talking about.

That might not make sense right away, especially without a working knowledge of Japanese geography.

The country is made up of several islands, the three largest of which are the northern island of Hokkaido, the main island of Honshu, and the southern island of Kyushu, pictured below.

Kind of looks like a big enter key, doesn’t it – or at least like an enter key that someone sneezed all over.

Others online agreed on the similarity and that a name along the lines of “Kyushu button” could catch on, but maybe not exactly with “Kyushu.”

“It looks like Yamagata Prefecture too.”
“At first I was wondering if the arrow resembled Kyushu or its kanji… then it hit me.”
“It looks like the arrow is pointing at Kumamoto too.”
“Hey, that’s Chiba Prefecture!”
“It seems like knowing the name of the enter key would be easier than knowing the shape of Kyushu.”
“Looks more like Africa, doesn’t it?”

“Africa key” is definitely a good one. The bottom part of that continent is a little too pointy to resemble the enter key exactly, but by name recognition alone, it beats “Kyushu button” hands down.

The other problems are that there’s often another differently shaped enter key next to the number pad on a lot of keyboards. Also, space efficient laptops usually redesign their main enter key, as one comment pointed out.

▼ “…”

But as they say, a problem is just a solution waiting to be found.

“Shikoku button”

Shikoku is another major island of Japan found to the east of the Kansai region and south of Hiroshima. It has a more rectangular layout but is equally sneezed-on looking.

So, while “Kyushu button” has turned out to be a problematic name in the end, the apparent low awareness of the enter key among young children raises the possibility that the days of calling it that may be numbered. Perhaps we can just revert to “Carriage Return” for a nice nostalgic feel.

Source: Twitter/@Celeron_ymd, My Game News Flash
Top image: Pakutaso
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