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Colemak via Tarmak

  • Started by bph
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  • Registered: 29-Apr-2014
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bph said:

if your stuck below 60wpm then thats not too much of an issue as thats plenty fast enough to get stuff done, if you were stuck at 40 then you would have a bit of a problem

^^^ This.

While I was ~100wpm Qwerty, I'm just fine and happy at 70wpm Colemak.

It's fast enough for me that I can express my ideas without getting frustrated at apparent lack of speed or stumbling over myself etc.

Am I upset that my speed is 30% slower than my old Qwerty speeds ? Not at all. If I was a journalist, then maybe it'd matter.

I imagine my speed will increase as time goes on, but since I'm comfy now, I won't actually do any drills / etc heh.  Such a slacker :D

Others mention typing tests / common trigrams, etc.  Another way to improve your speed is to get into pointless flame bait wars / arguments over the internet.  Typing fast / yelling faster / louder than the other guy is a great way to get practice in ... even if a bit troll-ish heh.

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I was at 100 WPM on QUERTY, so it's frustrating to be stuck in the mid 50's. It's well fast enough to maintain my work productivity, but slow enough to be a little frustrating, especially since my accuracy has declined somewhat...

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Here's my reddit comment for around that wpm.

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lalop said:

Here's my reddit comment for around that wpm.

Thanks. There's definately some places my muscle memory needs training. On lessons derived from a list of 500 common words, I'm up around 65 WPM, but I think that may have something to do with repetition. On lists of 'bad' trigrams, I'm down around 40 WPM. My main typos now are either letters out of order, or finishing a common trigram where it doesn't actually exist, or having trouble typing a less common letter when it's not in a common trigram (e.g. 'g' but not in 'ing'); rather than QWERTYisms.

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back up to 65 mean last ten on typeracer, but this time I've hit the 80% mark!

progress is really slow, last time i was up at this speed was back in july

i can see it will be years before i get into megaracer territory - an extra 15 wpm will be a herculean task

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i feel that way at plateaus, but it isn't true. it's more like 10 min per day, every day, will get you there. it's the every day part that's hard

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to be honest i am stoked to have hit the 80% mark

and pragmatic about further gains

i don't struggle to spend 10 mins a day practicing, its one of my top procrastination techniques

update - 80.8%...

Last edited by bph (20-Nov-2014 11:58:10)
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Hello everyone.

I just moved to Tarmak 4. I am absolutely loving this journey to Colemak. I've been at this for 8 days now and it has been much easier than I ever imagined. The thing I love about Tarmak is that during the transition you get an appreciation for just how out of place the QWERTY keys are. I've been doing only limited drills, mostly just typing like I always do. I type a lot for my job and I have experienced only a minimal decline in efficiency.

I do have a recommendation for improving it though, that I think you tech guys might be able to make it happen much easier than I can. Here's the main problem I've had with the transition - mastering the minor keys. The common keys (Colemak home row keys) are easy to pick up because they provide a clear payoff and they appear in most words. The secondary keys are slower to pick up because they appear less frequently and do not have a readily apparent payoff. So, you learn the Tarmak steps in an uneven fashion, mastering the common keys much faster. I think to improve this we need some recommended typing paragraphs. For Tarmak 1, the recommended typing paragraphs will emphasize the letters N, E, K, and J (especially K). For Tarmak 2, emphasize F and G (and to a lesser extent T), etc. This would be similar to the famous "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" (which includes all letters). I assume there is some sort of computer program that could generate such a thing.

Do others think this would be a good idea? Has it been discussed before?

-Jon

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  • From: Oslo, Norway
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Sounds like a good idea to me. On one hand, a goal of Tarmak is to make it possible to learn Colemak while typing normally, but on the other hand a set of drills focusing on the changes would be welcome to some learners at least.

I haven't got any such drills, but I'd be happy to promote them on the Tarmak page should anyone make a set.

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
*** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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Drills in Tarmak versions may be good, but since you don't stay with them for very long, that's not very effective.

Once you're full converted to Colemak, then drill...drill...drill...rinse...repeat.

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That's true enough too. Many would feel it a bit futile to drill a layout that's temporary. On the other hand, "drilling" the QWERTY keys you already knew may not matter? The drills, if made, would of course have to have a strong focus on the newly learnt keys anyway.

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
*** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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Yeah, I don't think they even need to be highly recommended. Just an additional resource for those interested.

BTW, I just made the transition to full Colemak yesterday about 10 days after the start. I was hitting 35 wpm at 95% yesterday but I seem to have regressed over night.

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just hit an 85 max on typeracer - first time i have broken the 80 barrier

and thats on a cheap and nasty rubber dome

when i get my home office loft conversion fired up and unleash the mechanical filco therein records are going to tumble

Last edited by bph (06-Jan-2015 14:21:20)
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Wow, nice! I've slowed down lately due to trying the "Curl" ergo mods (D-H), but they're a lot of fun so I'm not regretting it so far. And I quickly regained speed too, since no keys change fingers.

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
*** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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bph said:

just hit an 85 max on typeracer - first time i have broken the 80 barrier

Congrats! I'm stuck on a plateau now, but hope springs eternal.

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hey dreymar - i'll admit to waiting for your verdict on the new stevey mods

don't want to start sailing that train until i know its seaworthy

but the change does hold a certain appeal as i've long found the d and h a bit tedious

but i prob won't do it if its just a tiny improvement, or improvement of a few bigrams at the expense of some others

theres got to be a reasonable bang for the buck to tip me over the edge

hey brayer - its taken me a long while to get past 80 - plus theres only one text on typeracer that i can do it on, a really short and easy one, every time it comes up i think this could be it and today it was..

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I'll post a pre-verdict of sorts in the Mod-DH thread then.

But the short of the long is, sail the hell out of that train. Giddyap. ;-)

Only thing is, if you really care for your Typeracer scores then obviously they'll take a temporary hit...

Last edited by DreymaR (07-Jan-2015 09:22:32)

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
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bph said:

but i prob won't do it if its just a tiny improvement, or improvement of a few bigrams at the expense of some others

Remember, no keys change between fingers, so all bigrams remain the same as standard Colemak in terms of fingers used. The objective is only to make it more comfortable (for D and H especially).

I like the idea of a train that sails! I want one!

Last edited by stevep99 (07-Jan-2015 12:37:01)

Using Colemak Mod-DH with some additional ergonomic keyboard mods.

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Like hell they don't change! The frequent HE bigram is a whole lot better. And the KN one is a little more weird but it's quite rare and it works well enough as I said in the other thread. So it's mostly bigram gain and not an insignificant one.

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
*** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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DreymaR said:

Like hell they don't change! The frequent HE bigram is a whole lot better. And the KN one is a little more weird but it's quite rare and it works well enough as I said in the other thread. So it's mostly bigram gain and not an insignificant one.

Ah, maybe I misunderstood what bph was saying - I meant they are still all typed with the same fingers as before (at least in default assignment, I get that you can do some alternative fingering with e.g KN). Naturally the better H position gives rise a much more comfortable HE -  after all, that was one of the key motivations!

Using Colemak Mod-DH with some additional ergonomic keyboard mods.

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I just wanted to point out that even with no fingering changes there's a real and substantial net improvement of bigram quality. Just to make that point very clear.

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
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i'm desperately trying to curl it out at the moment

its hard for sure but i think it will be worth it when i'm done.

now on a 45 typeracer average, with accuracy around the 90% mark

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If it feels hard, you could always do one hand at a time. :-)

*** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
*** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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I'm already getting the feeling this is one smooth layout

after only a few hours i think i'm sold

bravo steve for the inspiration and dreymar for the perspiration (is that a fair assessment?)

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@dreymar it doesn't feel that hard to be honest - i don't think it will take too long to assimilate it into the borg, it certainly doesn't feel any harder than one of the early tarmak steps as a comparison.

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