I don’t believe the “disadvantages” of plugging a keyboard into the back of the computer and seeing the cord on the desktop (the real desktop, not the computer screen) are so bad that it’s worth paying $20 more to get a wireless keyboard.
The wireless keyboard is an even worse deal when you consider that it has the disadvantages of
- needing batteries that will have to be replaced and disposed of and could die in the middle of the night when getting replacement batteries is inconvenient,
- being sometimes slow to respond, having a slight delay between pushing a key on the keyboard and seeing a letter appear on the screen, especially for very fast typists (this is something I’ve read in online reviews),
- using radio signals that might be susceptible to interception by a wireless keylogger. (see “Hackers Can Spy on Wireless Keyboards From Hundreds of Feet Away“)
I use my computer while I sit at a desk. How far away do I need to be? It’s a keyboard, not a phone!
Many months after writing this, I obtained a new in-the-box wireless keyboard for free. I installed the software, connected the receiver to my computer’s USB port, turned on the keyboard … and the software declared it “paired”. Then, nothing. I typed, but never got anything to appear on the screen. I re-did everything. Tried a different USB slot. Restarted the computer. Tried another set of batteries. Then I did all of the above again on another computer. I was never able to type a single character on the wireless keyboard. There’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back. Never again.