I grew up in arcades, and have always been more comfortable with that type of control layout for games. Even with all of the consoles I had at home, I always bought the bigger arcade sticks.
I have also never been a keyboard controller gamer like most people who grew up with a PC. I never owned a computer while in school; the only time I ever used a computer prior to high school graduation, I was at a pool party, and we were playing Epyx California Games. To this day, I cannot do WASD; my fingers will not cooperate.
By 2002, I had been using MAME for two to three years. I could kind of play using MAME's default controls, but I was never in my comfort zone. At the time, I had settled on a cheap gamepad connected to the DA-15 game port on my PC. After finding Saint's Build Your Own Arcade Controls and browsing through all the differet project pages there, I decided I wanted to be able to play games with Real Arcade Controls, and though I had zero woodworking skills, started on a plan.