Look ma, no looking! - at the keyboard

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by roisin and mac, Oct 18, 2008.

  1. roisin and mac macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    #1
    Okay everyone, so I've decided it's worth it learning to type without looking at the keyboard.

    I'm reasonably fast as it is, certainly fast enough for my own non-professional use, but I figure looking at the screen while typing would make me twice as fast :) I first started typing stuff on my mom's computer in 1998, and from pretty much the beginning I've at least used all my fingers and kept some rules like hitting the space bar with my thumb and the Enter with my pinkie, but that's pretty much it. The amount of typing I did daily radically expanded in college, where I started writing far more emails every day, and of course, typing up papers since they didn't accept anything handwritten any more. So now I've reached the point where I look sort of half at the keyboard, and half at the screen (my eyes flick from one to the other at a rate of between five and seven words every time, seamlessly). Sometimes, if I'm relaxed, I can keep my eyes on the screen for much longer, and as I realized I did this spontaneously, it kind of planted the idea that maybe I could learn to do that after all (before that realization, I used to believe what a teacher told me in 8th grade or thereabouts, that if you don't start out by typing without looking, you'd never learn to type 'properly' which would be a disaster).

    Trouble is, most methods tell you just how to learn it from scratch, rather than give you some ways to use what you already know to transition into the faster way of typing. Kinda like telling you you need to relearn how to ride a bike from scratch when you're just asking how to take both hands off the handlebars :p I don't need to get super fast, just a little faster than I am now. So I figured I'd ask y'all here 'cause there had to be people here who'd done this before me. So fire away!
     
  2. millerj123 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    #2
    Touch-type

    I think your question is the problem. All the methods for improving speed revolve around putting your hands and fingers in the correct position, and then going from memorizing where the keys are to gaining muscle memory for common word letter combinations.

    The first 5 pages of Google links using "improve typing speed" all return information on how to touch type. If you've picked up bad habits doing the 'hunt-and-peck' routine, you'll need to unlearn them as you start learning the good habits.

    Since you specifically requested how not to go through the process, you could just use web site tutorials to go through common words and combinations. Some practice each day should help 'just a little'.
     
  3. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Berklee College of Music
    #3
    I am actually a chicken pecker, I don't look at the keyboard, I type with only my index fingers, and I'm extremely agile. My average typing speed is around 160 WPM with 98% accuracy. Not too bad for the technique I use.
     
  4. hexonxonx macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #4
    LOL I type the same way. I have owned real computers since 1993 and a semi real one back in 1983 when I owned a Texas Instruments Home Computer. In all this time, I never learned to type correctly but I can type pretty fast this way since I've been doing it for so long. Not sure if I would ever get hired at a company that required me to use computers not knowing how to type properly.
     
  5. millerj123 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    #5
    Mere mortals

    Are you sure about your numbers? I just took the typing test at: http://www.learn2type.com/index.cfm?action=TypingTest and averaged 61 WPM with 3 total mistakes. That's with 10 fingers independently able to touch the keyboard.

    I googled and the average is somewhere between 30 and 40 WPM with 100 or above being considered top 10%. I bow to your super-human abilities. ;)
     
  6. Beric macrumors 68020

    Beric

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2008
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #6
    I'm the same way, though I use my middle fingers. ;)

    But 160 WP? Not humanly possible. I might believe 40-50 WPM, but I'd put $1000 on it that you can't type 160 WPM. :p

    I honestly wouldn't mind being able to type in the correct position, and be a bit more accurate, but it looks like it's going to be a lot of work. And I've tried numerous typing programs without success.
     
  7. ~Wibble~ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #7
    I played this very old typing game when i was younger that taught you to typ correctly and ive kinda grown up typing fast and without looking.

    ~Wiggle~
     
  8. aristobrat macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    #8
    Maybe they were very, very small words?! ;)
     
  9. ribbonthecat macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
  10. skiesforme macrumors 6502

    skiesforme

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2008
    #10
    160 WPM !!
    Yeah sure, I too can.
    Look - A the an he she be and ...
    DAMN.Can't.Reach.160.WPM.
    looks like I have to stick to - A a a a be a be be a
    Yeah, I'm bored.. Monday !! :eek:
     
  11. Dybbuk macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #11
    Your speed was 89 WPM with 1 mistake (adjusted speed 88 WPM)

    :cool:
     
  12. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Berklee College of Music
    #12
    It is indeed humanly possible. I know someone who can type nearly 200 WPM. Let me take this typing test, though. The other possibility is that those stupid typing tests lied to me in computer class. I remember my computer teacher swore she could beat everyone in the school, and that I couldn't type faster than her, and that I smoked her 69 WPM 88% with 112 99% :)
     
  13. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Berklee College of Music
    #13
    Well...perhaps I stand corrected. Damn :eek: Sorry for the misinformation, guys.

    [​IMG]

    Edit: Although the way I took that test was my usual typing way, plus I'm sitting on my back in a chair, with my elbows lower than the laptop or even the desk, and my arms perpendicular to the rest of my body.

    Edit 2: Like this:

    [​IMG]
     

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  14. millerj123 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    #14
    Stenotype

    Court reporters have to do at least 200 WPM, but that's with a stenotype machine, not a traditional keyboard. (http://www.marines.mil/units/marforcom/Pages/2007/Marines type at the speed of speech.aspx) I'm quoting from Marine documentation from 2007, but I also worked with a lady who was working her way up to be a court reporter. At the time, she was consistently at 190 WPM, but only on the stenotype machine.

    A word is considered 5 characters so words per minute puts even my meager 60 WPM at 300 characters a minute or 5 characters per second.
     
  15. millerj123 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    #15
    Apparently, I got excited and distracted by statistical analysis. The questions are: where are you now, and where do you want to be?

    Wikipedia puts 40 at "fast". If you are near there, mission accomplished.
     
  16. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #16
    Do they not offer typing classes in high school anymore? How can people in this age of computer dependency come out of high school without touch typing skills?
     
  17. minijon macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #17
    I guess they just think that because all "kids" are computer savvy, they must automatically know how to type. Really, if u cnsdr ths rl tping thn i guess u r rite that kidz kno how 2 tipe. when evrythgn is shortendn n not spelled rite it makes for faster typers. The sad thing is that I know some of my friends who can type faster on their 0-9 phone pads than on their keyboards.
     

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