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Type faster by learning touch

Touch allows you to quickly increase your typing speed once you have learned the basics.

  1. How to learn to type touch effectively on Linux
  2. Look at the screen, not the keyboard!

The touch method is probably the technique that allows you to type fastest on the standard keyboards available today. The dry theory is very simple: the fingers on your left hand should rest at the keys asdf, the fingers on your right hand should rest at jkl;. All other keys should be pressed by moving those fingers up, down, left and right.

1. How to learn to type touch effectively on Linux

There are several programs made specially for teaching you how to type fast on Linux, but one stands out as the best thing created so far: Ktouch, a part of the KDE Educational package (kdeedu) that comes with the KDE Desktop environment. You probably have the program installed already if your distribution includes KDE. It is likely that it is available using your distributions package manager if you do not have it installed. Start it by running the command ktouch.

The first thing to do when you start ktouch is to configure it for your keyboard and language by accessing Settings -> Keyboard Layout and Training -> Default lectures on the menu. The default color scheme for the keyboard shows you what fingers to use for what buttons (You can change it using Settings -> Keyboard Color Schemes).

Start off with the simplest exercise if you are not familiar with touch. It does not matter if you are able to type relatively fast using your own method! If what you are used to is not touch then you are doing it wrong, you are typing using a method that has a low upper limit for how fast you will be able to type compared to touch. Be patient and start over from scratch. Touch will eventually allow you to type much faster IF you accept that you will type slower during the initial learning period.

2. Look at the screen, not the keyboard!

Do not look at the keyboard when you are learning touch using ktouch, focus on the screen. The program shows you the keyboard and it also shows you when you are hitting the wrong keys. Cheating will only accomplish a much longer learning period.

Move on to the more advanced exercises on the next levels once you have mastered the previous ones. Patience is very important when learning touch!

Good luck, and happy typing!

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