2016: The Year of Bad Typing ⌨️

I type a lot. All day, everyday. My primary role at Automattic is of a communicator. 99.9% of which occurs via a keyboard. ⌨️

I haven’t had any problems, except maybe once a week, my wrists hurt a little toward the end of the day. I wouldn’t typically think about it except typing is my life. It is like when a marathon runner feels something at mile 5. Scary.

Our keyboards aren’t made for this. The QWERTY layout that we all know and don’t understand was standardized when typewriters needed people to slow down. People were typing fast enough to make the types (the thing with the letter that smashes the ink into the paper) stick together. The layout makes us a bit more to work around this 19th century limitation. More work, the faster things break down.

I’ve been considering the Dvorak layout for sometime. This is a layout developed to overall reduce the work of your hands and, according to some, faster. I am pretty darn fast on QWERTY and, honestly, am already to the point where my thought process is usually my limiting factor. I am not expecting a speed increase. The potential reduction in strain is a huge benefit though.

I switched cold turkey about a week ago.

Using it exclusively is hard. It is humbling to suck at typing. I don’t know if it will make anything better or not, but figure it is worth the experiment. I return to work after a long break today—will my patience make it without ripping off the keyboard overlay?







2 responses to “2016: The Year of Bad Typing ⌨️

  1. josepH Avatar

    Interested to see how long you stick with this, Brandon. Thanks for the article as I had never researched this alternate layout and it was a fun read. Cheers.

    1. Brandon Kraft Avatar

      Well, not very long. I absolutely underestimated the productivity hit and my associated frustration with that.

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