I’ve tried to inspire lot of people to learn to type faster. I’ve succeeded in inspiring people, but could never get them to type fast. The reason: People are so happy without that skill!
I remember, few years ago, I saw uncle in my neighborhood developing a program in foxpro. He had his eyes fixed on the screen and his fingers were doing all the work for him. He did not have to look at the keyboard to fix his typos (in fact, there were no typos at all!). He did not have to search for the keys. His thumb would hit the spacebar at regular intervals. I thought it was so cool! I asked him if he took coaching from some institute (its funny that we think typing can only be learned by joining a typing institute). He said, he learned it all by himself. That was it! If he could do it, so could I. I did not have an option.
I went back home, turned on my computer, fired up notepad, took the latest issue of PCQuest and started typing the editorial. It was hard! I tried memorising the key layout, but it was just impossible. I thought of giving up. But hey, I wanted to learn to type without looking at the keyboard! I wasn’t giving up yet.
I spent about 45 minutes, trying to figure out how to positiong my fingers on the keyboard, associating set of keys to each finger and so on. It was hard and I wanted to give up at the end of every 5 minutes I spent. I kept on learning.
I’d type spellings, without looking at the keyboard. Each time, I had to recall which key was placed where. I’d keep pressing incorrect keys until I hit the right key. I’d then memorize the location of that key and move to next letter.
I kept on doing the same for 10 days; almost 1 hour every day. By the 10th day, I was already at 40 words per minute, which is enough to pass the standard typing test (someone told me). It took me few weeks or months maybe, to move from 40 to 60 words per minute and few years to move from 60 – 70/80 words per minute. Now I average about 65-70 wpm. Not bad.
The thing is – I’m faster at interacting with my computer. Its cool. Really!
–The Big K–