Learning Dvorak – Day 9

learning dvorak - photo of old typewriter

Three learning Dvorak lessons are done and loaded up online now:

The non-drills are starting to feel more like real words and phrases and I’m very happy to see that I can get up near 30 wpm. I’d like to maintain that speed as I branch out away from the home row and onto the others.

The hardest keys right now are O and S, I keep forgetting and trying to type them with the wrong hand first. I’ve only started to catch myself before actually hitting the key, but it still breaks my rhythm and slows me way down when it happens.

Other Interesting Dvorak Facts

I was reading up on Dvorak today and discovered that August Dvorak (the guy who invented the Dvorak layout) was a professor at the University of Washington. That’s practically next door! (Well, one state over.) One of his students was writing a thesis on typing errors and he decided that the existing (qwerty) keyboard could use some improvements.

The original studies Dvorak did divided up groups of students who were learning to type in school (so, no unlearning or relearning) and found the Dvorak group was able to learn the keyboard in about 1/3 of the time as the qwerty group. So maybe there is a greater advantage to learning Dvorak when you are just starting out on the keyboard.

How Long Does it Take to Switch to Dvorak from Qwerty?

There were some studies in the 1930’s about learning Dvorak. One by the Navy said you could relearn how to type in 10 days. (That would be tomorrow and I am not THERE yet… not to the speed that I can type qwerty – not anywhere near it.) The other study among a bunch of businesses came up with a time of 100 hours. I find that more believable.

My boyfriend just pointed out that they may have been putting in 10-hour days with the Navy group.

I’m practicing 30-60 minutes most days. 30 on purpose, and some extra with an occasional line in the blog here, or an email, or trying to type my password to get back in my computer.