Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Considering learning a new keyboard layout

I've read about Dvorak before and I've also considered it before but found it too daunting a task.  But this is what an online friend told me this morning:

bkhl64: My ¢2 on keyboard layouts is that the time it takes to learn a new layout (like Dvorak) is miniscule compared to the amount of time you will use it.
bkhl64: So cutting down the learning period a bit should not be a reason to choose one layout over another.

So yeah, the Dvorak layout is one consideration I have in mind.  I also saw that the Colemak layout might be a good option but I am not so certain if Windows will also support it.  I am switching OSes every so often (my laptop is still in dual-boot) and I am sure that Dvorak is supported on Windows XP and Ubuntu.  I might be slow in typing for the coming weeks but I would hopefully build up speed.

This learning of a new keyboard layout is in response to the pain in my hands and wrists.


James said...

Colemak is supported on Windows though you need to download additional software to use it. However, because it is based on qwerty, it is much easier to learn than Dvorak, and unlike Dvorak, it's possible to use a "qwerty by day, Colemak by night" approach in the early days so you don't lose out on productivity while you're learning the new layout.

It also has a pretty lively support forum at where you can find a lot of really smart people who can help you with any technical problems that you may have with it. There are also programs that can let you use it even if you don't have administrator access to your computer.

Jacinto said...

Back in high school I started having RSI pain in my wrists so I switched to Dvorak. For my first month with the new layout, I taped little pieces of paper with the letters on my QWERTY keyboard. I've been using Dvorak for the past 5 or so years and haven't had any pain since.

rommel said...

great to hear your dvoraking now


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a crafty cat who loves food, linux, anime and crafting.

business analyst by day, blogger by night. also a frustrated artist.