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What does every computer do everyday? There is one basic thing which we all do, can you guess what it is? We type on our keyboards. Regardless of whether you are a home user who wishes to send emails, post on social networks, or an office worker who needs to type letters, memos, prepare excel sheets, PDFs, documents or presentations, we all have to use the keyboard to type.
But just how efficient are you with the keyboard? Can you type without looking at the keyboard? I remember when I was interviewed for a job about a decade ago, as part of a test I was asked to type some text, in a limited time test. So I had to type what ever came on the screen in the question part, in to the answer part, before he timer ran out. This is a classic example of being efficient at reading, and then typing, and doing both as fast as possible.
I sure drew some glances, when I typed at a very fast speed, and perhaps that I pressed the keys a bit harder, so it was noisy too. But I felt proud that I could type so well, and needless to say I passed the test with ease.
If you have been using keyboards from an early age, you are probably good at typing, without making much of an effort. You just learn to use it more, on your own, if you type a lot everyday. I rarely glance at my keyboard while I type, and its only when I make the occasional typo, that I look at the key I just pressed when the error occured.
What if you want to learn to type better? There are some classes, but then you have to actually go to it, sit with other people you don’t know, and follow a tutor’s instructions, to the word. Personally, this is not something I would do, as once you are a certain age, going to a class feels awkward and silly.
But, what if you could learn to type faster, right from the comfort of your home or your desk? Nobody’s going to be bothering you, it seems ideal right? How is this possible? The answer of course, is to use a typing tutor software. And the one we recommend is Typing Instructor Platinum – Windows.
Anyone can use this software, kids, adults, college students, etc., and improve their typing skill. When you run the Typing Instructor Platinum for the first time, the program asks you, including via a voice message and an on-screen prompt, to enter your name, goal words per minute, and your typing skill level. You can select beginnar, look and type typist, touch typist, and expert touch typist. If you are uncertain, you can select “Skill Test”, to see what kind of typist you are.
This test will bring a paragraph, which you have to look at and type. We decided to give it a try, and it rated me as an Expert Touch Typist, and set my Goal WPM to 40.
When you select a skill level, you will be asked to select the user, and you can create up to five profiles. This brings up a UI called the Travel Port. You will see a round portion on the screen, which displays the selected theme. There are 3 travel interface themes with 12 locations in each, totalling to 36 locations. The three themes available in Typing Instructor’s Travel Port: World travel, Time travel and Photo safari.
There is a fully voice guided video tour, which explains the program’s functions. This option is available from the left corner of the Travel Port screen.
Pick a destination in the Travel Port, by selecting one of the twelve icons of a theme (on either side of the circular area), and select the Go button on the right sidebar to start the typing plan. Once you pass the destination with 95% accuracy, you will travel to the next destination in the typing plan. Successfully completing one of the destinations awards you with a travel stamp in the passport of the software. You can re take the tests in a theme, by clearing the stamps from the passport.
Now, coming to the tests themselves, once you hit GO, you will be tutored by Typing Instructor’s lesson, which teaches you how to correctly position your hand over the keys, which fingers to type a letter with, key stroke combinations, and helps you build your typing skill. If you find a lesson to be difficult, go to the settings menu from the Travel Port or the lesson UI, and change your Goal Words Per Minute, Skill level, etc.
The Settings screen also lets you customize the keyboard and typing options, music which is played in destinations, the font size, colors, etc.
The lessons also include games, tests, which feature the keys you learned in it, to see how well you perform. The Plans option on the travel port lets you select a different typing plan, anytime you want. The results option shows your typing performance results such as your WPM score, accuracy scores, etc.
The Practice button takes you to the practice terminal of Typing Instructor. This is also an educational place where you can learn about the history of typing, practice lessons, take practice tests, customize typing activities, take a dictation where you have to listen to the words and type what you hear. There are two fun pratice modes called Magazines and Arcade. The Magazines option lets you type stories, articles including your own custom ones, while the Arcade is a place where you can play typing games to improve your Goal WPM, time based challenges, etc. It has over 30 game challenges.
Typing Instructor is a really fun and entertaining way to improve your typing speed and accuracy. This in turn, helps you become more efficient and productive.
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