Writing and Typing Speed Comparison

By Timothy R Butler | Posted at 10:02 PM

This is a rather ingenious comparison of major methods of outputting text: pen-and-paper, normal QWERTY keyboard, and several different mobile input methods.

HT: John Gruber.

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Re: Writing and Typing Speed Comparison
At one point in my life, I was great collector of pens which felt really comfortable, since I tend to grip tightly. Oddly, I preferred plain old No.3 pencils for the results, though. Then I got a typewriter. Eventually got regular use of a DOS computer. These days, I seldom write anything by hand, and my penmanship is worse than ever, though I'm sure arthritis is part of it. But I can type for hours on my keyboard, whether the desktop or the laptop doesn't matter. I'm not at all a good candidate for pocket devices.
Posted by Ed Hurst - Jan 22, 2010 | 2:30 PM

Re: Writing and Typing Speed Comparison
I'd have to agree, Ed. I find writing with a pen more satisfying, but rarely do it because I can type longer and faster than I can write with a pen. My penmanship has also gone down hill, alarmingly fast since I quit taking lecture notes by hand a couple of years ago. I'm not a great mobile device typist, although I find I can do reasonably well with an iPhone or Droid.
Posted by Timothy R. Butler - Jan 22, 2010 | 10:49 PM

Re: Writing and Typing Speed Comparison
I can type like crazy on my cell phone. It's a sideways-flip, so the keyboard is nice and wide, rather than cramped up like a dingleberry. I can type nearly as fast on it as I can on a full keyboard. The downside is that I can't see nearly as much on the screen, so I lose context. When I dedicate full thought processing, I'm nearly as fast on my iPod's software keyboard. The problem, though, is that I have to be looking at the "keys" and paying attention to where I'm touching. The lack of tactile reference means I can't multi-task, as I can with a physical-style keyboard. It's fine for entering short bits of information, but I'm not going to type anything long. I do most of my writing using a full-size keyboard, though when I have to write something that I'm still chewing on, I'll pull out pencil (rarely pen) and paper /because/ it's slower. I give myself more freedom to really think about each word before I write it down.
Posted by Caedmon - Jan 22, 2010 | 11:55 PM

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