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- Registered: 13-Sep-2016
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I've been practicing with Colemak off and on in total about a month or so pretty much cold turkey -- I must admit it is frustrating to feel like a person with speech impairment -- I know what I want to write, but unable to express it freely as the thought flows.
Before starting to learn Colemak, I'm most proficient at typing using Dvorak. At the risk of dating myself, Dvorak has been my layout of choice for decades. Anyways, I'm taking the plunge into Colemak just out of personal interest. Claims of efficiency and (more importantly) comfort are likely mostly subjective, and I feel the need to learn it to see if all of the claims are true.
Based on my current learning experience, I would argue that Colemak's biggest disadvantage is its similarity to QWERTY. That is ironic, because it is cited often as an advantage. However, as a primarily Dvorak typist with the ability to also type using QWERTY (with less proficiency), the similarity of Colemak is causing severe conflicts in muscle memory. My hands "recognize" the QWERTY typing pattern and would naturally revert back to QWERTY layout. Then my mind would try to correct itself but then if I'm not concentrating hard enough, it goes back to Dvorak — so it come out as a stream of indecipherable characters, of my mind switch back and forth between QWERTY and Dvorak with the occasional Colemak sprinkled in there in between.
Since Dvorak is by every measure a much different layout that it may be easier for the brain to adjust to a completely new pattern than to try to decipher the difference between two somewhat similar typing pattern....
As I wrote before, I've been using Colemak off and on, but each time I come back to continue learning Colemak, I'm surprised at how easily my mind picks back up from where I left off -- perhaps that is a side effect of Colemak's similarity to QWERTY.