When I was in the second semester of my BE, there was this CCCP (Computer Concepts and C Programming) lab. Though I was good at coding and problem solving, I used to struggle a lot in the lab as I couldn’t type faster compared to my classmates. I used to search the keys on the keyboard as if I’m searching for needle in the haystack. Fast forward four more sems, I’m still baby stepping in the Embedded Systems lab. One late evening in the hostel, I saw my best buddy Suren typing flawlessly on his laptop without looking at the keyboard. Bingo! I decided to learn how to do that. Suren told me that it’s all a matter of practice and gave me Typing Master software. I installed it in my laptop and started following and practicing the lessons in it. One great thing about this software is that it has 10 to 12 lessons and two minute practice sessions. By the time you are in the tenth lesson, you are a pro at touch typing!
Zoom ahead two more years, I was working with a networking consultant named Nithesh in my first project at office. He was brilliant and had CCIE Security cert. What made me to get awestrucked at him was his lightning typing speed and accurate thinking. I incorporated a large part of his style in the way I work. More importantly, I got serious about being a touch typist. Here’s why.
Advantages of Touch Typing Skills
1. Speed. This is going to be the first and most obvious benefit of learning to touch type. A touch typist can easily reach typing speeds above 75-80 words per minute, while a hunt and peck typist would be hard pressed to reach 30 words per minute. This also increased by the fact that an accomplished touch typist doesn’t have to look at the keyboard. It is difficult to type something while reading it if you have to look down at the keyboard every other stroke to find your next key.
2. Accuracy. One of the most important things to learn no matter how hard you type is to type accurately. Ask anyone who’s ever played a multi player online game, and they’ll tell you how it important it is to be able to type quickly and accurately. No one is going to be able to ride to your rescue if your typing skills are so atrocious that no one can understand what you’re saying.
3. Time. If you increase your typing speed from, say 30 words per minute to 60, you have effectively halved the time it would take you to do the same amount of work. An average two finger typist, typing at for example of 15 words per minute, will type a 250 word section in about 17 minutes. A touch typist, on the other hand, typing at an average 60 words per minute, can type the same section in around 4 minutes.
4. Fatigue. Typing is both mentally and physically exhausting to do for long periods of time. Learning to touch type properly reduces both mental and physical fatigue. Mentally, it keeps you from having to focus on two things at once. All you have to worry about is your output, not finding the individual keys. Physically, it keeps you from constantly having to bend your head over the keyboard to find your next couple of keystrokes.
5. Health. Overall, touch typing is better for your health. You’re not hunched over looking at the keys, and using all of your fingers actually reduces the risk for repetitive stress injuries, or RSI. Many people who work on keyboards or with computers all day are at risk for these repetitive stress injuries.
6. Job Prospects. Typing is not an optional skill anymore. Many employers require computer skills and a certain typing speed to even be considered for some positions. Needless to say, they aren’t looking for 20-30 word per minute hunt and peck typists. Learning to touch type, and to do so accurately, can be one of the most invaluable skills of your career. Want to find out your wpm typing speed, visit http://www.ratatype.com/typing-test/.
7. Focus. When you’re typing with two fingers, your focus is split between finding the keys on the keyboard and the work you are doing on the computer. Learning to touch type allows you to focus on one thing instead of two. This tends to increase productivity and make it easier to pay attention to the details of your project rather than having to focus on your keys.
8. Editing. If you spend your time staring at your keyboard, you are not going to notice spelling or grammar mistakes until well after you have made them. Touch typing give you the option of editing as you go. You’ll be able to see errors as they appear and backspace to fix them. This is also good for grammar mistakes, as what you see in your head may not sound as good on paper.
Touch typing may seem like it’s not worth the time, especially if you’re already confident in your hunt and peck skills. It is, however, one of the most valuable skills you can learn. It may take a little more time than you would like, especially if you have a life time of bad habits to relearn, but in the end, a small investment of time will pay off in more ways than you can imagine. This is just a basic list of the benefits of touch typing. There are many more out there to discover for anyone who wishes to learn.
According to me, the greatest benefit of touch typing is that inexplicable joy I feel as I type flawlessly and effortlessly. Let’s think about it, we spend the best hours of our best years in office, almost always in front of computers. Would it not be wise to make it as enjoyable as possible?
There are plenty of awesome touch typing teaching sites. The ones I like are,
Check out this list for more touch typing sites and softwares.