Ask Abby

First Time Visitors

Tiptoeing Around Bad Typing

I am not ashamed to admit that I don’t know how to type. I have all ten of my digits, but I’ve typed three books to date with only six of them in use. I call it the Columbus Method – find the key and land on it.

The keyboard on a computer is very similar to the keyboard on a typewriter. The alphabet and number keys are set up in exactly the same pattern as on your old Smith-Corona and function in the same way.

That may not be a consolation for those of you that never learned to type, but here are some tips to help you with your typing:

1) Don’t rush! Who’s timing you? No one. So, take your time. Watch your fingers find the keys and look up at the screen to check your accuracy. Even if you use the wrong fingers to type, the more you type the faster and more accurate your typing will become.

2) If you are using a laptop and the keyboard feels cramped, plug in an external, larger keyboard into the laptop.

3) If you suffer from arthritis (or have extremely long fingernails) and find the keyboard difficult to manage, use the eraser end of a pencil to hit the keys on the keyboard instead of your fingertips.

4) Use a small dollop of bright colored nail polish on the Period key to distinguish it from the Comma key next to it.

5) The Backspace key and the Delete key are there for you to use if you make a mistake.

6) Gently depress a release computer keys. If you hold down a computer key it will sttttttttutter.

7) Above the Shift key is the Caps Lock key. Beware of accidentally hitting the Caps Lock key, which will make what you type appear in upper case. Simply depress and release Caps Lock to deactivate it.

It is pure poppycock to let poor typing prevent you from enjoying what a computer has to offer. I will hear none uf it! (Oops, I mean “of it”.)