Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sunday Stroke Survival~ Type of Typing

An interesting discussion ensued in one of the stroke communities I'm involved in. Whether the Dvorak or QWERTY is easier to type with one handed. My answer is... it depends.

I have gone round and round this discussion since my stroke left me with only one functioning hand. I'm a dyed in the wool QWERTY fan. With two hands, my WPM speed was 120 WPM. With one hand my speed has increased to 40 WPM. I'm still striving for the 60 WPM mark but it will take some time just like reaching the 120 WPM speed was with two hands. It's a goal with no time line. I will get there.

Dvorak keyboard
After saying that I'm not totally against the Dvorak system either. It's just another way to type. I know some people love it while others like me shy away from it. I just have to relearn and learn so many things Dvorak is low on my want to learn list, but not as low as playing the violin.

I tend to take the path of less frustration these days. Lord knows, there is enough frustration accomplishing daily tasks after a stroke without adding one more. Still after almost two years post first stroke, the idea of learning a new way to type is daunting to me. A lot of what I do is try and try again. I'm too stubborn to give up.

I've written several blogs about it HERE, HERE, HERE. Working with a smaller keyboard helps immensely! Of course I do miss some of the keys my bigger keyboard had. My major malfunction was I'm an old dog trying to learn too many tricks. I'm not too stubborn to admit that Dvorak might be easier to type one handed. But my hands know QWERTY although my finger placement is different than before my stroke. DOH! I'm one handed and not a one finger typist. To me, that's a major accomplishment. Now if I could only get my spelling and grammar up to speed I'd be content.

The old adage, "if it ain't broke-don't fix it" comes to mind. But the fact is I'm like Humpty Dumpty in more ways than one. I'm broke and can't do anything the same way I did before pre-stroke. A stroke will do that. So I latch on to what is familiar and comfortable... QWERTY instead of being an innovator with Dvorak.

I'm not saying that I'm no longer an innovator because I am in so many ways, but my typing I'm not. I have grace enough to admit it. I'm not perfect nor do I try to be viewed as such. I'm stubborn and set in my ways not to mention doing QWERTY for over forty years it comes second nature to me. I can be a cantankerous old fart at times. I just can't justify the need to learn a new system of typing.

If you are not a cantankerous old fart, stubborn and set in your ways, or are a born innovator try Dvorak. I hear a bunch of praises of the system from the one handed community. After reading about it, it looks interesting like so many things do to me. It's a passing interest. One on my list to try in the future. Just not today.

Nothing is impossible with determination.


  1. Sign me up as a Qwerty fan! If I had to learn to type my name starting when the right little finger instead of the left little finger, I'd go nuts!


  2. I think it would be more difficult to learn a new set of keys like that.
    You'd like typing on an iPad if you enjoy smaller keyboards. You'd easily reach all of the keys with one hand.
    120 words per minute? That just blows my mind. Then again, I'm a two finger typist...

  3. Wikipedia says the QWERTY keyboard favors people who type one-handed IF you use your left hand. Your left hand can type thousands of words without crossing the midline but your right hand can type only hundreds of words without crossing the midline.

  4. My new keyboard measures 8" across so it's easier to reach all the keys.

    Rebecca, darn my bad luck most of the words I'm trying to spell are all over the place. lol

  5. Zan Marie trying capitalizing words or even a (ctrl, alt, del) with on'll truly go bonkers.

  6. Hi Jo - I think having to think about where the keys are on the Dvorak added to the stroke challenge would totally leave me fumbling .. so you're much better as you are - and you're doing really well ..

    I think I'd leave things quietly be .. and do what you can more easily using the Qwerty .. cheers Hilary


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