re: Touch Typing- The Most Important Skill For Developers Nobody Talks About VIEW POST


Touch typing is indeed huge, but I think you're missing a non-obvious reason why it isn't talked about: A non-negligible number of people learn to touch type alongside learning to program. I was like this (I could barely manage 10WPM in school, now I can type so fast that I have to limit myself just so my keyboard can keep up), and many other people I know are like this too, they either learned to touch type as a side-effect of learning to code, or got exponentially better at it as a result of learning to code.

Keyboard layouts, however, are largely pointless for many people. Aside from the portability aspect, many people aren't actually limited by the keyboard layout as much as a lot of people seem to think. The limiting factor is often the hardware not being able to keep up, usually due to either poor rollover properties, or the designers cutting corners under the assumption that certain sequences of keys are not likely to be used. I've actually tried multiple alternative keyboard layouts over the years (Both Colemak and three different Dvoark variants (classic, one-handed left-side, and the programmer variant), and none of them, even after practicing enough to touch-type without having to focus, actually improved my typing speed enough to matter. The only time I ever got close to enough improvement to consider was testing a Velotype PRO (a rather interesting syllabic chording keyboard design), but you need actual hardware for that, and there's no way I'm shelling out more than a thousand dollars on a keyboard that can't even really be used for coding.


I don't think changing from QWERTY to COLEMAK is worth it.
But if you typed with less than 10 fingers without a system on QWERTY for a long time, it's possible that the habits you formed make it actually more difficult relearning on QWERTY and it is easier having a fresh start.
Nowadays you can change between COLEMAK and QWERTY within seconds on modern operating systems.

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