Dvorak – Better than QWERTY

I started using Dvorak at the start of the school year, September 2004 and tried to use it as much as possible. This meant that I would use it when typing anything that wasn’t too long. I was still too slow to type a paper or long email in an reasonable amount of time. But now I’ve been using it ever since and have gotten quite fast, though not quite as fast as I once was in QWERTY. I can still feel myself slowly improving and once I start practicing with a typing tutor (dvorak-ng) I’m sure that I’ll get faster than I was before. Typing in Dvorak is kind of cool. It’s still a relatively obscure term. It’s fun to watch when people try to type on my Dvorak keymap. Since I deleted Windows from my computer and solely use Linux, I had gotten very competent at using the bash (similar to DOS) prompt. Relearning the tightly engrained bash combinations (ls, cp, mv, cd, uptime, grep, etc, etc) proved to be the most challenging aspect of learning Dvorak.

Here’s a really good Dvorak resource: Introducing the Dvorak Keyboard

Edit (July 1st, 2005): I’m so fully switched over to Dvorak that now I have to almost hunt and peck to type in QWERTY!

3 thoughts on “Dvorak – Better than QWERTY

  1. David Dean

    How did you arrange the hardware side of things? Can you just buy a dvorak keyboard, or did change the mapping and move the keys yourself?

  2. scott

    You can buy hardware dvorak keyboard here: http://www.dvortyboards.com/. And elsewhere: http://froogle.google.com/froogle?q=dvorak&btnG=Search+Froogle

    I just switched the keymapping using kbdconfig (a debian app) when not in a GUI. In KDE you can just click a button and the keymap is changed. (Similar to how I’m typing this on the university lab’s dual G5 on a QWERTY keyboard with a Dvorak keymap). This allow my keys to remain in the QWERTY layout…which provides an excellent buffer against people trying to steal my password by watching what keys my fingers hit.

    I even convinced my Dad to switch to Dvorak and he gets along fine with just the mapping changed. He does have a printout of the Dvorak layout that he keeps handy just in case.

    Are you thinking of switching?

  3. gclimer

    i’m finding it to get a little easier to type… like you, i switch back to the standard qwerty keymap when typing a large volume, i just taped the dvorak layout onto my existing keyboard… i have two computers hooked up to a kvm, so i only have one keyboard… eventually i hope to have the computers separate and i can rearrange my keys accordingly, rather than having the layout taped on… but that also brings into question with the little dots on the home keys… hrmm… maybe i should just buy one!

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