Let’s start with some history: Last July, I decided I would learn how to type in Dvorak. I knew it would be hard, because of my being forced to type in QWERTY on school computers, etc., but I persevered, and a year later (which is now), I type at a consistent 95 WPM. My speed with QWERTY previously had been about 105 WPM for a long, long time. So 95 is really not too shabby for just one year of practice.
If I had read the full wiki page on Dvorak last year, I may have reconsidered my attempt to be nerdy/unique. You see, I registered for the GRE last week. The GRE is a computer-based test. There are two essay questions on the GRE. The GRE does not allow test takers to type in Dvorak.
Unfortunately, it was too difficult for me to keep up my QWERTY while learning Dvorak. This morning, I attempted a typing test with QWERTY, and averaged 25 WPM with 85% accuracy. Immediately afterwards, I performed the same test in Dvorak, with a result of 95 WPM and 95% accuracy. Now, it’s time to somehow eliminate my muscle memory, at least temporarily, until I take the GRE in mid-September. I’ll only be typing in QWERTY from now until then.
I hope my Dvorak speed/skill doesn’t just disappear after a month. Because that would totally suck.
(Good-ish news: I’ve been in QWERTY all day, and just took the test again and got 50 WPM with 90% accuracy. This blog was also typed in QWERTY, and I only blanked out on words/letters a few times.)