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One Hand Typing and Keyboarding Manuals and Resources on CD: Type Fast with One Hand Multimedia CD – May 20, 2003
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About the Author
Lilly Walters, Speakers Bureau Executive and Best Selling Author of 10 book, each of which she typed herself - WITH ONE HAND.
Top customer reviews
I agree with both "Randombookperson" and "ACustomer". What I received was very disappointing. The cd and mini guide were both amateurish (home printed). For the price I was expecting a semi professional grade disc.
The cd comes with:
- The manual in different formats
- Printable version
- A list of related URLs from the Internet
- 100 page eBook: One Handed Office Professional
- Motivational keynote speech video of Jim Abbott
I felt that #3-5 are just filler and didn't add any real value. Most of the extras are common sense or could be found via Google. The manual itself: I noted typos, much of the example text had added spaces. The constant reminder for breaks got very repetitive. Perhaps if there was an option to buy only the pdf at $5, it would be worth the price. I would not recommend it at anywhere near $20+. I sincerely applaud Lilly for her efforts. It fell short of my expectations and very over-priced for what it is.
Some alternative software is: "5 finger typist" (payware), I tried the demo and it looked good. Another I recently found is "Rapid typing 5" (free), it also does alternate layouts such as one hand Dvorak. I highly recommend checking it out.
If you read the website you will see that the author is very Pro QWERTY and is not keen on other solutions such as the one hand Dvorak layout. I personally disagree with the "disadvantages" listed about dvorak. Granted an employer wouldn't want key caps popped off. Most workplaces would be understanding of a disability and likely wouldn't mind setting the layout to suit your needs. As for using other computers, in most modern OS it only takes a few seconds to add in. One could leave the control panel minimized and quickly delete it once finished. If anyone or a boss has issue, that's not a place I'd want to work at.
After a few days of going through the manual. I felt how much more stress there was in my hand constantly jumping around the keyboard. On a whim one weekend I decided to give Dvorak a try using a standard qwerty keyboard. I was surprised how easy it was to memorize (took me two days). I used the built in keyboard viewer (both Mac & windows). Yes the letters are different, that helps as the goal is to type by feel not looking. The difference in comfort especially was night and day.
I decided to switch permanently to Dvorak. There are the odd times I need to use QWERTY. In those cases; I have a toggle set it takes a second to switch back and forth. I also utilize the sticky key function, as well as remapped the right side Alt and windows key to act as backspace/enter. That way its by my thumb, not requiring any stretch.
I'd suggest to anyone both kids or adults to experiment with options and figure out what works for you. After 29 years on QWERTY, I'm glad I gave dvorak an honest try/effort. Found it more logical and far less stress on the hand, at least for me. If anyone is interested in Dvorak, leave a comment. I have a list of free resources that may help.
One size does not fit all; try different things and don't be afraid to go against the QWERTY crowd. Make the keyboard your own. Thanks for reading, all the best in your touch typing journey.
After all, it's a typing manual. That means accuracy is particularly important, because how are we supposed to tell the difference between poor spelling and grammar or a typo? It seriously reduces this author's credibility. Unicorn Quest is probably the way to go, or, once you realize that you can center your hand on FGHJ, just teach yourself by doing. The same goes for one-handed Dvorak -- ultimately, you're the one who knows what's going to work best for you, and you don't absolutely have to follow someone else's instructions. I knew someone who memorized the whole keyboard in both QWERTY and Dvorak, and simply typed from wherever his fingers touched down. He wasn't dependent on any "home base." If you learn by doing, you don't need to pay someone else to teach you -- especially if the teacher's own work is sloppy, as it is in this manual.
I was very disappointed in the "extras" that inflated the price. The motivational messages were sprinkled throughout the drills, which were distracting for me personally. I want to learn how to type, not read a Chicken Soup book. While the list of electronic resources at the end seems to make it more useful, nearly all of these resources come from Walters' own website and can thus be viewed for free. Her e-book about being a one-handed person in the office is occasionally helpful, but does not offer anything that a one-handed person cannot think of himself or herself with a little common sense. (How does a one-handed person open mail? Set it on the table and slide your finger under the flap. I didn't need anyone to teach me this.) Actually, her supposed tips are very general and would be pretty obvious to anyone, one-handed or otherwise. (Read the manuals. No, really? Automated help. Well, I had no idea that existed. Not.) In addition, even here much of the text is lifted from her own website.
The most disturbing thing, however, was that the grammar was very poor. I know typing itself is not the same thing as writing, but still, I expect that someone working with words and letters -- a "best-selling author," no less -- will be able to tell the difference between "dominate" and "dominant."
If you just want a basic typing manual, download the free one-handed typing game called Unicorn. (Unfortunately, I found out about this game after I wasted my money.) Unicorn will teach you everything you need to know to memorize the keys and, somehow, comes off as less condescending than Walters' "pep talk" even though the game was inspired by a one-handed child. That's saying a lot, I think. As for this manual, with its poor editing and excessive duplication of existing material, I was left thinking, "Why on earth did I pay for this?" Tellingly, the book is self published. Gee, I wonder why.