If you can't make it better you can laugh at it. ~Erma Bombeck


Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Typing Testiness

I have seen this before, but most recently over at Just Because. However, unlike some people, ahhh ahhh ahhhhjules excuse me for sneezing on you! I have not altered my results. OK OK OK, So I tried but it messed up and I had to redo the stupid thing and ended up with a lower score the second time. I know how to quit while I'm ahead!

71 words

You type 400 characters per minute
You have 71 correct words and
you have 1 wrong words

If you have a mind to try it yourself, you can go here:

Speed test

There was actually a time when I, for real - all jokes aside, typed about 105 WPM. Well, if you count errors it was closer to 100 or so. That was back in the hayday of my secretarial career almost 20 years ago. So I'm happy with a meager 78 dang HTML coding crap 71 now.

I'd learned to type in high school on a normal manual typewriter that looked a whole lot like this one that I found on Flikr. My original plans had been to be a lawyer or a doctor, but Mom wanted me to have a backup plan, so she made me take secretarial courses like accounting, shorthand, typing, and business machines. To this day I can't account for the balance in my checkbook let alone be trusted with some company's books, and the shorthand completely ruined my spelling because it's all phonetic. However I have recently been able to use the phonetics I learned there in texting. Who'd'a thunk it?? But the typing and business machines thing stuck and I became a technology glutton. Why do it manually if you can find a cool machine to do it a harder better way? But we'll save that discussion for another time.

My first secretarial job was for a small steel fabrication company LONG before there were computers on every (or any) desk. It was also before the widespread use of copy machines, so everything had to either be typed twice (or more) or by using carbon paper. The more copies needed, the more layers of carbon paper, so it was important for the keys to be heavy enough to strike through anywhere from 3-7 layers of paper. The owner got tired of the flimsy mechanisms of the new fangled contraptions like the one shown above, and decided to get back to basics. Therefore, for nearly 2 years I typed on one of these old Royals. See those keys? There is at least a 1/2" between each row. And pushing them required the finger strength of Zena the Warrior Princess. On one of these puppies, if you could hit 45 wpm you were considered an office goddess.

So, the next time you think you don't like your nice, feather-touch keyboard with the padded wrist rest and ergonomically correct key positioning, just flip back here and imagine having to do your daily posting on one of these suckers and just kwicherbichen!


  1. Ugh! My best score was 34 with one mistake 200+ characters. I'll have to try again when my fingers aren't cold and stiff. lol. I really think it would be easier to type faster if there were actual sentences. I kept getting tripped up by the words changing color. I'm easily distracted.

  2. Brandi - Hey girl! I just finished catching up over at your house! LOL! Great minds...

    34's not a bad speed for someone who doesn't type for a living. Beside, it's more the accuracy that counts than the speed. Doing it over is a huge time waster! LOL!

  3. I put my hands in my pockets to warm them up and tried again. I typed 200 characters, 35 words and no mistakes. I have this really bad habit of stopping to check my progress. I also use the backspace key a lot. It's a good thing I don't type for a living.

  4. Hey that was FUN! I think I'll post that on my page too!

    Ok - ready for my results?

    I type 70 words per minute Here are the stats:
    You type 357 characters per minute
    You have 70 correct words and
    you have 1 wrong words

    Say it with me .... seriously are we related?

    Love ya blissy!

  5. 61 for me. Wow....105, that's amazing!

  6. Hey, I didn't do the test yet. But oh, how I remember those old typewriters. Carbon and "onion skin" paper. And can you say, "white out"?? Ha Ha. I actually failed the first six weeks of typing in school and dropped out. I later taught myself how on an old typewriter that every time I returned the "carriage" the end fell off. I was so poor. Well, actually, still am. But oh, well, I can type pretty decent now. Have a great day.

  7. I learned on an electric, but have used the manual. I started working in the very beginning of the computer era so we still used carbon paper a little. It's interesting to have started at the beginning and see how quickly the computers took over and improved!

    The last time I took a test I typed about 65 wpm. I don't think I want to know what it is now.

  8. Brandi - LOL!! Do I detect a wee bit of the Miss Perfectionist thing going on here?? Just keep remembering the story of the rabbit and the hare. ;o)
    Lucille - 1. what were you doing up that late??? and 2. Yeppers. Twins separated at birth. Poor Mom, she was in labor for like what, 12 years? LOL! Love ya oodles.
    Tammy - 61 ain't bad. And I only got that speedy because of the Zena finger strength thing. Go type on an old manual for a while and then come back to your keyboard and you'll be flyin' too! LOL!
    Margie - You're such a youngster! When I started out there was no such thing even as white out! Remember those typing erasers with a gritty nub on one end and a brush on the other? If you weren't careful you'd scrub a hole in your paper and have to start all.over.again! AACK! Thank GOD for backspace and delete!!
    Deb - 65 is good too! I remember my first electric. I leaned across it to answer the phone and my boobs leaned on the keyboard causing most of the keys to jump up all at once and get stuck together. It had a stuck key alarm on it that was generated by each key, so having most of the keys stuck at the same time caused a horrible buzzing sound that startled my boss who spilled his coffee all over what I'd just typed, so I had to redo a 5-page document. I immediately called an electrician to move the plug to the other side of my desk, away from the phone! Ahhh.. fun times. Thank God they are gone!LOL!

  9. I only got an 80. I say "only" because I used to be up over 100. I guess I'll need to get some more practice.

    I'm so glad to not have to type on an old typewriter. We didn't have a computer when I was growing up, so I used to have to use one for my papers in high school. You practically needed a sledgehammer to type each and every letter. It was not pleasant at all, and even more painful when you made a mistake way far in and had to redo the whole thing.

  10. Burgh Mom - 80? And you are complaining? LOL! Are you possibly related to Brandi? You seem to share that perfectionism gene. ;o)

  11. I learned how to type on an old typewriter also. 8th grade.
    I will take the test later, right now, I need to do my "Real" work, which does not consist of typing. (and yet here I am sitting at the keyboard blogging............ Not that I'm trying to avoid working today.......... Really, I wouldn't do anything like that.......)

    A while ago, we were at my mom's house, and the kids saw her electric typewriter.

    Kids: Hey, where's the monitor?
    Me: There's no keyboard, it's a typewriter.
    Kids: A what? Where did grandma put the monitor?
    Me: No monitor, you just type.
    Kids: Why? Hey, if we look around, maybe we can find the mouse!

    Recently, I was talking about sending a fax.

    Kids: What's a fax?

    What's a fax? Are you serious?

    I tried to explain what a fax was, and they say "Oh, so it's kind of like e mail."

    I feel old. So very very old.

  12. Jill - LOLOL! I remember having a similar conversation with my daughter about a record player. She was 14 at the time and had never seen a real record player! Wanna talk about feeling old!! LOL!

  13. Yep, I'm a perfectionist through and through. It's tough raising six kids without expecting them to do everything just right. I had to do things my mom's way growing up. She has eased up and realizes she was like that, now. I'm trying not to be like that with my kids. I probably overdo it some. I always try to get them to look at everything from different angles. (How else could this have been handled? etc.) I dislike starting something I can't finish, and I dislike messing up.
    Either it is hereditary or I have rubbed off on a few of my kids.

  14. I did 80 words per minute. I found it kind of distracting, waiting at the end of line for the next group of words to pop up, the word changing red when I made a mistake, and, being a type-reader, the words not forming any coherent sentences. It was fun to try, though.

  15. Ugh, I remember those days - though I learned to type on IBM Selectrics. But one kind uncle gave me my own electric typewriter, because he was certain I'd become a writer someday.

    Thank God for PCs.

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  17. Brandi - We all have our little patches of perfectionism. Mine just happens to switch points of emphasis - sometimes on a daily basis! LOL! I like that you help your kids view all sides of issues. It will help them be better rounded adults.
    Heather - I agree that the way they do it is rather distracting. Brandi mentioned that, too. Still - 80 ain't nuthin to sneeze at! ;o)
    Angela - God bless your uncle for his foresightedness! OH - and while I'm thinking about it, do I need to change the link on my Go Learn Something sidebar so that it goes to your new webpage? Wouldn't want anybody missing out on your great advice and wealth of knowledge!


    Everybody: There's a game on Yahoo called Typer Shark that is great for being able to think fast on individual words. Might be great for kids to practice their typing too since it's also a fun game they can strive to win without Mom having to ride their tails to get their practicing done. Just a thought. :o)

  18. I did 78 :-) with 4 wrong. Not too bad consider the fact I type all day. I learned to type on a machine like you did and I remember carbon paper too. We used it in Jr. High and High School. We did not have computers when I was in high school. I am amazed that my kids have them in elementary and preschool!

  19. AZ - we didn't even have computers when I was in college. The first true computer that I had on a desk (other than the old CRTs that weren't really computers, just monitors with keyboards attached for data entry) was in 1980 when I went to work for a company that was on the cutting edge of data processing equipment development. They called them microcomputers back then. Eventually IBM bought the company I worked for and they vanished, along with the products they were developing. That probably had to do with the fact that their stuff was in direct competition with IBM's products, and big brother had the money to make little brother go away. I often wonder what other really great developments in technology, energy, etc., have been silenced in a similar fashion.

  20. Well look at you - going all techy with the strike outs and such. And I noticed that your sneeze, you know - up near the top of the post?- looked something like my name. Imagine that? Interesting coincidence, huh?

    You might want to try the nifty strike out thingy up there too... you know... just to see if it works and all. LOL :)

    By the way, I'm bowing deeply to you now - 71 words per minute. Wow! You are a typing queen in my book.

    Loved the cartoon at the end. And thanks for the Typer Shark tip. I'll force... um... encourage my kidlets to give it a try.

    Hugs to you.

    Just Because

  21. Michelle - I actually thought of you when I was doing it... These are words that DON'T go together well! LOL!! Glad you enjoyed it.
    Jules - Yes, I'm all techy now, thanks to.. aaa aaaaa aachYOU (dang! Excuse me! I must need to quit blogging so much and go dust in here!) mmm.. thanks to a wonderful blogger friend who is very smart and funny. And I like her EVEN THOUGH SHE CHEATS ON HER TYPING SCORES! ;o) But I forgive her since she thinks I'm a queen! LOL! Actually, that honor here goes to Heather and Burgh Mom (I wish I knew her real name!! I can't shorten Burgh Mom to BM without cringing, so I guess I'll keep using the long form LOL!) Anyway...

    Good luck with the typer shark thing. I think your kids will actually like it. Let us know if they did.

  22. LOL can you say "hunt-and-peck"? Yep, I got a whopping 30 wpm. But, I got 100%. I'm so proud!

  23. Lisa - 30 is very respectable. Besides, how often have you told your kids, "neatness counts." Now you have one more example to shove in their fa...uhhh, mmm.. show them. ;o) I'll be over soon to check on your lates renovation progress.

  24. I tried one of these a few years ago after I had my first son and was seeing if I could be a medical transcriptionist from home. You had to take on line tests. I was good until I got to capitals and numbers. I never was and still am not good at those. I sound like I am typing 100 words a minute, but it is due to the backspace key.

  25. Angie - LOL on the backspace key. I still have to stop and look for some numbers and symbols. Did you get that transcriptionist job anyway?

  26. I took the test! I got 72 wpm with one mistake. It's kind of tricky though sinced the words don't make any sense together. I learned typing on a Selectric II in high school.

  27. I only got 63 wpm! I really need practice. I started typing when I was in the 11th grade. That was soooo long ago! Electric typewriters came out the year before. I'm getting old!

  28. Sandra - good score. Seems like just about everybody has trouble with that word thing, so you aren't alone! LOL!
    Rosebud - only 63? That's very respectable. And don't talk to me about getting old! I'd been married and divorced and married again before they came out with those fancy electric wonders!

  29. I see your picture. You cannot possibly be all that "old". I don't see any wrinkles!

    I've been married for 19 years, but if I'd had more money available for the divorce I would have been long ago.
    I'll betcha got a good one the 2nd time around though. How long has it been?

    I used to type a LOT faster. I'm getting slow in my OLD age. (and if you don't think I'm old just ask my kids)
    I love reading your blog. The stories are so funny.
    Oh, and thanks for the "Meals prepared to eat" suggestions. I have learned that Safeway has a good line of Family sized meals, and Stoffers are pretty good. Marie Callenders Pot Pies are good also.Amy's has good cheese enchiladas and mac.And it's more organic.

  30. I need to practise - I came up with 25 wpm. Mind, I was never very fast. Years and years ago I took a Scheidegger copy-typing course, and scraped a pass with 21 wpm, so I'm faster now - just!

    (Just posted this on the lower post, so I moved it up here. Going ga-ga!)

  31. AWWW Rosebud, you are very kind, but I'm on my 3rd marriage and this one will hit 27 years in April. And I'll hit 52 in November. My profile pic was taken in 2006 just a few months before my 50th birthday. So, regarding the no wrinkles thing.. GET A MAGNIFYING GLASS, HONEY, cuz they're there! ;o) LOLOLOL! Love ya for not noticing, though!
    Dragonstar - So your talents lie in photographic magic, not keyboardy prestidigitation. I'd take your kind of magic over mine anyday! :o)

  32. 27 years, and I thought I was a patient soul enduring 19! You got me beat, I must say. This is my first and only marriage. I'll never do it again, that's for sure.

    I do feel like my great-grandmother with all the physical health issues, but....

    As for being old, 52 is not old! I'm not that far away, and I refuse to believe that it's all downhill from here. I'd like to believe that I'm not just getting older, I'm getting better. (As Garrison Keller would say, "You're not ageing", your amazing.)

    You do photograph well, I must say!

  33. I suck...it was 48. I type all day.


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