Slowly Learning Dvorak
If you are unfamiliar, Dvorak is an alternative keyboard layout that supposedly triumphs over QWERTY from an ergonomic standpoint. This weekend I decided to take it for a spin, and was met by a lot of frustration. At this point I can get about 12 words per minute with Dvorak, and plan to continue practicing on a daily basis. I just typed those last three sentences with Dvorak, and it must have taken me at least 5 minutes. I have to say, as a skilled QWERTY typist, it’s going to be difficult to learn a new keyboard layout from scratch. However, I’m sure it will pay off once I do.
I highly suggest Dvorak for any of you out there who are interested in trying something new, or for those of you who consistently experience pain in your hands from typing too much. Even after only a few hours of using Dvorak, it is apparent that typing with it will require much less effort than QWERTY, and that I may ultimately be able to improve my typing speed from what I currently have with QWERTY. At this point I am familiar with the Dvorak layout, and the only thing slowing me down is the time that it takes me to recall where any given key is located. Because of the frustration level, I plan to only use Dvorak for an hour or two a day, which will hopefully be enough for me to become proficient with it.