In the really old days, our ancestors painted and chiseled out their life stories in caves and on stone walls. Then paper was invented, and scribes painstakingly painted voluminous scrolls. The invention of movable type changed everything - movable type, as the name suggests, is a quick way to print things using individual blocks with inverted letters carved on them that can be moved and covered with ink. Arranging (or moving) lines of "type" and pressing a sheet of paper against it provided a quick way to make copies of a document. Then someone figured out you could attach individual letters of type to mechanical levers, and thereby push levers in succession to print (or type) arbitrary text onto paper.
The first recognized commercial "type-writer" was developed by Christopher Sholes and Carlos Glidden, who made an agreement with the Remington company to mass produce it. And thus our modern "keyboard" was born, developed by Sholes, along with the ubiquitous QWERTY letter layout. Why this keyboard layout? The first mechanical devices (apparently based on sewing machines, which was the Remington company's main product) would jam if the typist typed too fast. The QWERTY layout was developed to make the process of typing SLOWER, thereby protecting the machine from jams. In recent years, alternative keyboard formats have been developed such as the Dvorak and AZERTY, but this typing history lesson will stay with the QWERTY keyboard layout as it is still the most popular.
No doubt the first secretaries were baffled at this new invention. Used to putting pencil to steno pad, it is likely that many well-painted fingernails were broken before someone decided to start teaching (or tutoring) "typists" how to type efficiently. As was the norm in the old days, repetitive drills were used by the typing tutors. Keep in mind that students back then had little choice but to "repeat after me ..." as tutors' canes were as well used as the duncecap.
With the invention of the computer, an efficient method of entering data was needed. The first computers (which filled entire rooms) used punch cards. The operator would punch holes in index cards over a grid of printed commands and letters, then feed stacks of punch cards into the computer. Obviously a hard way to make a living. Some genius then wired switches to a typewriter keys, and viola, the modern computer keyboard was born.
At first, typing lessons were still given on mechanical (and later, electrical) typewriters. The same boring repetitive drills were continued. Like banks of trained seals, typing students lined up on rows of typewriters and clicked and clacked out sequences such as these:
hhhhh ... ad infinitum.
Then came commercial typing training software, which simply placed the same repetitive drivel onto colorful computer diskettes. Another generation of typists were forced to hunch over their keyboards, clattering out repeated key presses. Many home computer users rebelled at this ignoblility and refused to learn to type, and took to prodding at the keyboard with their forefingers, inadvertently inventing the hunt and peck typing method.
When the Internet was invented, the software manufacturers decided to save a few cents on their colorful disks and tried to sell their repetitive tutor boredom online. Some even slapped together frolicking animated cute creatures and called it a typing game, making for both a revolting and a boring repetitive experience. But then came the "new age" typing tutor, Learn2Type.com introduced a revolutionary method of typing training; quick, easy and FREE.
Read on about this typing tutor ...