Saturday, July 9, 2011

Touch Typing Part 2

Well, week 2 of learning to touch type is over. I'm in the region of 50 wpm. Which is almost where I wanted to be (just 10 wpm short). I've spent most of this week trying to improve accuracy, I can recommend GNU Typist which requires you to be 97% accurate to move on with the exercises. As a summary I would say it's only been two weeks and I'm just about at the speed I was at before I started, except now I don't need to look at the keyboard. I can definitely recommend giving touch typing a try if you haven't already.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Touch Typing Part 1

So, this the the first blog post I can claim to have touch typed. I realised about a week ago that while I was typing I was spending a large amount of time looking at the keyboard. So I decided I would fix it by learning to touch type. I'm getting a lot of support from the guys on the Software Craftmanship linkedin group. Here is a diary of my progress so far.

The starting point
My current method of typing involves looking at the keyboard while I type and using my index fingers (and occasionally the other fingers for familiar patterns) I average about 55-60wpm doing this.

The aim
Get to 60 wpm without needing to look at the keyboard (Although it would be nice if I could go faster than 60wpm).

Spent the day looking at some websites to see what would help. I read Nick Morgan's blog post and felt inspired. By the end of the day I was used to home row.

Signed up to Typingweb and Typeracer. I can get to about 16wpm but occasionally I need to force my fingers back onto home row. When I try to go fast they default back to old habits.

By the afternoon my fingers were defaulting to home row, took a test on typing web and got up to 24wpm. Played typeracer in the evening and got up to 26wpm.

Did 5 races before work. Pushed my average up to 28 but the competitive element pushed me into bad habits. By the evening my fingers were feeling more comfortable sitting on home row than it did on monday. Feels like all I need to do now is keep at it and hopefully the speed will come.

Felt myself falling back into old habits during the day. I reached 40wpm on typeracer but trying to go above that forces my fingers off home row.

Spent the whole day at work coding while touch typing. I wasn't typing very quick. But I hardly looked at the keyboard at all.

So that's it so far. I'm ending the week typing about half the speed I was going at the start of it (34wpm) but I no longer have to look at the keyboard while I'm doing it. So it's a step in the right direction. Now all I need to do is stick at it and hopefully I will start getting faster.

Thanks to Pascal, Corey and the rest of the guys on the Software Craftsmanship group for their support!