Weekend Open Forum: How did you learn to type?

By Shawn Knight ยท 72 replies
Mar 30, 2012
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  1. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,374   +69

    I took a 9 month typing class in high school and I still can't type numbers too well (they use the 10 key structure anyway) and symbols were all different. We actually had 1 month on manual typewriters. This was in '75 when computers were not popular yet, but the next year I learned computer programming on an hp2000 timeshared mini in basic and officially we programmed it on pencil drawn cards--not even a keypunch--, but used the terminal occasionally. Typing class came in handy the second year of college when they installed wylbur with dumb terminals and moved everyone off their keypunches and of course in my computer career. Ironically, my brother just bought an hp-2000-412nr laptop. Deja vu.
  2. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,374   +69

    Furthermore, it's ironic that you should bring this up, because there were several people in the 80s at a company that will remain nameless that worked in the computer department (some for 40 years) with me, earning 5 figure salaries that just hunted and pecked. I guess I did all the work. The attitudes they had, too. My brother is in a similar situation in the present.
  3. Per Hansson

    Per Hansson TS Server Guru Posts: 1,959   +218

    On a mechanical typewriter by my grandpa.
    I never had any formal training...
    tonylukac: So true on people at companies doing the "hunt & peck" yet still earning great salaries.
  4. TJGeezer

    TJGeezer TS Enthusiast Posts: 385   +10

    My father published a weekly newspaper in what was then a small Sierra Nevada foothills town east of Sacramento. At about age 10, in 1953, I taught myself to type on a huge, desktop Remington typewriter. My mother saw what I was trying to do and set me up with two written sources - a copy of Huckleberry Finn in a simplified version edited for children, and a hand-drawn copy of a QWERTY keyboard on a piece of paper. She put the book to the left of the typewriter and the diagram to the left of the book. Looking at the keys was cheating but if I really couldn't remember where a letter was I could look farther away, to the hand-drawn keyboard, and find the key on the typewriter by touch, without looking at the real keys. She said I'd have to look at the diagram less and less, and it worked. By age 11 I was typing 80 words a minute, about as fast as the old typewriter could go. When microcomputers arrived - the first one I used was a Cromemco running on some limited version of BASIC - I got hooked on WordStar for writing. What a boon! Now I've passed my Geezer license test and am going for Coot, but I still type pretty well.
  5. Kraemepoo

    Kraemepoo TS Enthusiast Posts: 44   +20

    I can honestly say I don't remember not being able to type. I grew up typing before I could read the words I typed, my brother taught me how to load and play Comodore 64 games long before I could read the words I had to type.
  6. UnknownSky

    UnknownSky TS Enthusiast Posts: 43

    I pretty much learned typing around the age of...let's say 10? Or so. My mom had an Acer with Windows 95 and it went from there. I do not really use the home rows keys at all and type pretty efficiently now without many or any errors. Both pointers do the main work while my other fingers, mainly the thumbs and pinkies, collaborate to take what I have in my mind and put it into the white space. :]
  7. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +651

    1975 typing class in my freshman year of high school. Few of my buddies & I took typing, because it was 3-4 of us versus a room full of girls.
  8. I threw a tea towel over my Commodore 64 keyboard so i couldn't cheat and typed out stuff i was reading in the ZZap 64 magazine of the day, my school were using macintosh in the day and the only thing they taugh us was what i already knew how to use a GUI which the teacher mistakenly said at the time that Mac was the only OS with one when i mentioned i owned a C= 64 he said i must only play games yet the funny thing was i and a few other "gamers as he called us" knew more than he did throughout the year and he would regularly enquire with us when something was wrong and ask us gamers for advice..
  9. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,028   +2,558

    If you don't mind me asking, how did you ever expect to get a job in the computer industry, displaying integrity like that? :confused:
  10. Playing counter-strike in the weee hours of the morning with all of the lights off so i didn't wake up my parents.
  11. Otepman

    Otepman TS Rookie


    I started learning the "HOME Keys" first because my dad wanted me to but it didn't work out. So instead I learned typing without any formal position and typed on my own pace. =))
  12. Mudvayne819

    Mudvayne819 TS Enthusiast Posts: 42

    learn some basic in high school in a type writter optional class, also had a computer at home around 7 years old, then played online at some game called quake 3 arena and i played it hardcore almost all keybind on every key on my keyboard (at least almost all the part left to the arrow keys) thats where i learned my keyboard
  13. Marnomancer

    Marnomancer TS Booster Posts: 723   +51

    Same story here! :approve: Being self-taught is surely a noble thing. :D
  14. veLa

    veLa TS Evangelist Posts: 782   +235

    You are a hero among men.
  15. I learnt to type way back in 1978 on a manual typewriter. I was in the Royal Australian Air Force and received professional training over a period of 10 weeks, mostly through headphones.
  16. Phraun

    Phraun TS Rookie Posts: 35

    I spent so much time hunt and pecking as a kid that I can now type without looking at the keyboard at all, without using the home row. Ironically, it makes typing out certain words a great deal faster since I don't have any issues moving both hands to one side of the keyboard, or reorienting them to a more suitable position for the word.

    Given how big my hands are, it's probably a better way for me to type anyway. I did try to learn the "proper" way to do it a few times, and it always made my fingers cramp up.
  17. High School, Type class 1 and 2. It was one of the many classes require for graduation.
  18. MUDs and MMOs...seriously.
  19. bielius

    bielius TS Addict Posts: 214   +17

    Sad but... runescape.
  20. Tygerstrike

    Tygerstrike TS Enthusiast Posts: 827   +93

    As a big guy I also suffer from large hands syndrome. I learned some typing in jr high school but lost it all. It wasnt until many many years later when I started working on a computer that I picked up some typing. Whats funny is I cant look at a screen and type. My hands are too big. I put my hands on a normal keyboard and start trying to type like normal ppl and I have epic fail. However I can type out quite fast by looking at the keyboard. I can catch mistakes w/o even looking when I do that.
  21. I took typing in High School on a manual typewritter, glad I did now. My daughter is in High School now and they don't teach typing at all. The teachers said, go out a buy a typing tutor program. My daughter is happy just using the hunt and peck method.
  22. Phantasy Star Online =P
  23. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 839   +29

    In grade/middle school we had "quarter classes" where we got different things each quarter, but you didn't really get to pick them. Teachers did it for you....
    Over the course of 3yrs (4,5 & 6th grade) I got typing classes for 3 or 4 quarters.......
    Not sure why, no one else did.
    But I do remember Mavis Beacon, and the teacher taping a piece of paper so it hid the keys from us.
    I think when I left 8th grade I could do about 35wpm.
    Since then between MSN chat/MUD's/ & the MMORPG addiction I finally kicked I'm up to about 50-60wpm. I would probably be faster but 1) I have to stop and think about spelling a lot of words & 2) I don't do a lot of straight typing at my job. I do more graphic design where you type out a few words.

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