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  #21  
Old 14 October 2008, 10:49 AM
kia
 
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The typewriter's Q-W-E-R-T-Y layout is a limited skill for keyboards only; we strongly recommend beginners don't spend time learning Qwerty, which is a decaying and unnecessary complication.
Yeah...right...ok.

It's only unnecessarily complicated because it takes about two weeks to learn to do well and requires the breaking of bad habits. Once learnt, touchtyping on a qwerty keyboard is easy, fast, and accurate.

They can prise my qwerty keyboard out of my cold dead hands. Or if software is developed to work (well) straight off of my brain waves. As far as I've seen things like speech recognition and handwriting recognition tools fall far short of the speed and flexibility of using a keyboard... and are grossly inadequate for playing games on the PC too. Games like WoW require a keyboard, and being able to touch type makes keybindings and typing etc so much easier.

As for an alphabetical keyboard... why fix what isn't broken? It's just not hard to learn to touch type.


Anyway on topic, my boyfriend works in IT and his most common user issues arise from forgotten passwords, or people who have forgotten they changed their password, and people who have deleted things they suddenly urgently need three days later. I think the vast majority of people in an office environment are well past the stage of needing to learn to turn on a PC.
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  #22  
Old 14 October 2008, 12:35 PM
Insensible Crier Insensible Crier is offline
 
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Quote:
The typewriter's Q-W-E-R-T-Y layout is a limited skill for keyboards only; we strongly recommend beginners don't spend time learning Qwerty, which is a decaying and unnecessary complication.
Not on this side of the world. Saying QWERTY is obselete is like saying driving on the right side of the road is obsolete. Is the standard and no one is going to change it anytime soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kia View Post
It's just not hard to learn to touch type.
Then tell me the secret. I've used computers since I was in kindegarten and I'm one of the slowest, inaccurate typers that I know of. At my best I can just squeeze out 30 WPM.
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  #23  
Old 14 October 2008, 12:46 PM
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Lainie Lainie is offline
 
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There's a reason QWERTY keyboards were used for typewriters, and AFAIK the frequency of occurrence of various letters in the English language has not changed.

I did once run into a 20-something adult, in college and planning to go to grad school, who was shocked to discover that keyboards were not ABC. It didn't surprise me that he'd never typed his own papers, but it did surprise me that he'd never even seen a typewriter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vanilla Gorilla View Post
While taking a programming class(work paid class not college course) I talked with this group of guys from another company. Tech story humor came up, i.e. "Borken CD drawer mistaken as drink tray", and they mentioned how they had a group of secretaries whom most were 50s to 60s. Well the company replaced their typewriters with PCs. Well after setting the systems up these guys had come back to check on the secretaries to wonder what happened to the mice. After asking one of the secretaries where they were at turned out they had them on the floor using them like foot pedals on a sewing machine.
Since they were experienced secretaries, a better analogy would be a dictaphone machine. They had floor pedals.

Quote:
One of my coworkers took a tech call once trying to help this person set up a printer. He asked her, "Can your computer see the printer?". Well he worded that wrong for she left the desk and physically moved the shared network printer up onto a shelf so that her computer could "See it" from her cube.
That's the fault of the techie not explaining things appropriately to the non-techie.
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  #24  
Old 15 October 2008, 02:08 AM
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Elwood Elwood is offline
 
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I am in tech support for users of every possible proficiency. We recently had a call from someone complaining that they were trying to use the VPN from home for the first time, but could not establish a connection.
VPN Software installed?
Check.
Configured properly?
Seems to be.
Do you have connectivity apart from VPN? No? Do you have connectivity to the internet from any other computer in your house?
Uhm, I do not have computers at home.
Do you have internet service at home?
What? I thought I just turned it on.
Turned what on?
The wireless button? That's what I do at the office. I turn on the button and connect. I thought this VPN allowed me to do that from anywhere.
Sorry, I do not think the VPN connection will be a viable solution for you right now.
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  #25  
Old 15 October 2008, 03:27 AM
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RivkahChaya RivkahChaya is offline
 
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Quote:
Well after setting the systems up these guys had come back to check on the secretaries to wonder what happened to the mice. After asking one of the secretaries where they were at turned out they had them on the floor using them like foot pedals on a sewing machine.
Back in the one-button mouse days, I can see this being workable.
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  #26  
Old 15 October 2008, 04:04 AM
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Psihala Psihala is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RivkahChaya View Post
Back in the one-button mouse days, I can see this being workable.
Macs still ship with just one-button mice.

~Psihala
(*Mostly uses trackballs and tablets anyway...)
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  #27  
Old 15 October 2008, 04:21 AM
Nick Theodorakis Nick Theodorakis is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RivkahChaya View Post
Back in the one-button mouse days, I can see this being workable.
The Footime Foot Mouse.

The Nohands Mouse.

Nick
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  #28  
Old 15 October 2008, 05:38 AM
Salamander Salamander is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Insensible Crier View Post
Then tell me the secret. I've used computers since I was in kindegarten and I'm one of the slowest, inaccurate typers that I know of. At my best I can just squeeze out 30 WPM.
Well, I can't promise this is the secret but rote learning and incentives to touch-type worked for me.

I don't use the proper hand positions as I rely on rote learning to know where each key is on the keyboard. If you stick me on one of those ergonomic keyboards I'm next to hopeless. IRC was the tool that turned me from a key-pecker to a self-taught touch typist though. The real-time nature of it was what provided the incentive to stop looking at the keyboard when I was typing (so I could keep an eye on what was being written). It was pretty cool when one night I realised I was typing and not looking at the keyboard. I used IRC pretty heavily back in those days -- easily 4+ hours a night and more on the weekend -- and it took a few months before I stopped looking at the keyboard. I'd guestimate it took about 400 hours of IRC chatting.
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  #29  
Old 19 October 2008, 02:22 AM
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The Website is Down
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  #30  
Old 20 October 2008, 08:09 PM
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WildaBeast WildaBeast is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elwood View Post
Do you have internet service at home?
What? I thought I just turned it on.
Turned what on?
The wireless button? That's what I do at the office. I turn on the button and connect.
Hey, if WiMAX takes off that would actually work.
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  #31  
Old 20 October 2008, 08:45 PM
FormicaArchonis FormicaArchonis is offline
 
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Two absolutely true stories, because they happened to me:

Doing tech support for HP Deskjet printers, over the phone. The customer couldn't print. No error lights were on, so the next step was to print the printer's demo page to see if it was a problem with the printer or her PC. I told her to hold down the resume button. And a few seconds later, the printer kicks to life and spits out a sample page. She was horrified. "Oh my god, you've taken over my computer, haven't you?!" (I was too shocked to respond with "Ph33r my l33t h4x0r1ng, n00b.")

About a year ago, I was working in a PC shop. A guy was having problems with his PC's CPU (socket 478, for the geeks in the audience) overheating. It was fairly thick on dust, and really needed regular cleaning. I explained how to clean it. Power off, take side off, blow the visible dust out with canned air, don't touch anything. The next day he called to ask if he could buy a new CPU. He decided that because the CPU heatsink was so heavily caked with dust, he'd remove it and the CPU and clean UNDER them too. Not only was he surprised to find no dust under the CPU, but he broke pins putting it back. I wanted to send violence over the telephone at him.
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  #32  
Old 20 October 2008, 09:35 PM
Heavy B Heavy B is offline
 
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I don't usually make fun of my ex-wife...well, at least not in public...but I still laugh when I think about the following exchange we had a few years before we split:

Me: I think it's so funny how you hear those stories of people calling IT departments and asking where the "any" key is on their keyboard!
Ex: I know! I mean, everyone knows that the "any" key is the "enter" button!
Me: What?
Ex: Yeah...the "any" key is actually the "enter" button. Everyone knows that!

Uh...yeah...and she is the manager of her company's Software Quality Assurance department!!
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  #33  
Old 21 October 2008, 02:19 AM
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Kev Kev is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psihala View Post
Macs still ship with just one-button mice.
Not really. Yes, technically they have one physical button if you don't count the side buttons, but that one button can be configured to act as up to three buttons.

ETA: But, yes, since they can just be one button they could be workable in the foot pedal scenario.
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  #34  
Old 22 October 2008, 02:00 AM
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Elwood Elwood is offline
 
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Well, as I type this, I am working remotely on a five-year old system that has never been defragmented or had any type of disk maintenance. It's not the user's fault; the standard user accounts do not allow user's to defragment on their own and nothing is pushed out at the enterprise level to make it so. That poor machine has been at it for hours. I could have reimaged and configured the thing in far less time.
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  #35  
Old 22 October 2008, 06:11 AM
Troberg Troberg is offline
 
 
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Quote:
Not on this side of the world. Saying QWERTY is obselete is like saying driving on the right side of the road is obsolete. Is the standard and no one is going to change it anytime soon.
It's one of many standards. Every nation has their own variant on the standard. Completely different standards exist, such as the much praised Dvorak.

I intended to switch to Dvorak this summer, as my hands are starting to hurt and it's a better choice from an ergonomical viewpoint. I had to postpone it, though, as matters took a turn that required me to do a lot of typing, which is not the best time for a keyboard layout switch. Now, I'm aiming for Christmas or next summer.

Quote:
There's a reason QWERTY keyboards were used for typewriters, and AFAIK the frequency of occurrence of various letters in the English language has not changed.
I would say that the frequency of occurrance probably has changed, although not much. The point, however, is that there is more than one conclusion one might draw from that data set. For instance, Dvorak tries to maximize the effect of alternating between the hands when typing, something qwerty hasn't even considered.

As usual, if you want one answer, never ask two experts. There are many solutions to a specific problem, and several of them are correct in their own way.

Quote:
Well, as I type this, I am working remotely on a five-year old system that has never been defragmented or had any type of disk maintenance.
Defrag is not that important anymore, the effects are usually neglible. Modern file systems, much larger disk cache and faster disks has made it a non-issue. For most users, the larger disks also helps, as fragmentation usually happens on a large scale when a disk is almost full. I never defrag my systems (running NTFS, ReiserFS and EXT3), and when I've tried to defrag just for the test, I could not notice any difference. I could measure a tiny difference, but it was so small that it could be a random variation or a variation in previous cache contents.

The best way I've found to improve disk performance is to use a better file system. ReiserFS is a rocket, but, unless they give Hans Reiser a computer in prison, its future is a bit uncertain, but BtrFs seems to be its intellectual successor, so I'll probably switch to that eventually.
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  #36  
Old 22 October 2008, 09:50 PM
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Kev Kev is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lainie View Post
There's a reason QWERTY keyboards were used for typewriters, and AFAIK the frequency of occurrence of various letters in the English language has not changed.
The reason the QWERTY keyboard was developed was to keep common letter pairs a safe distance apart on mechanical typewriters so that the typebars wouldn't clash and jam when the letters were typed in quick succession. So, while the frequency of occurrence of various letters perhaps hasn't changed, the prevalence of 19th century mechanical typewriters has.
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  #37  
Old 22 October 2008, 09:50 PM
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Chloe Chloe is offline
 
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Common letters like "e," "r," and "t"?
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  #38  
Old 22 October 2008, 10:01 PM
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Kev Kev is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chloe View Post
Common letters like "e," "r," and "t"?
Common letter pairs like "TH" and "ST." It's not perfect, some common pairs are still together like "IO" but it was apparently better than an alphabetical arrangement as far as avoiding jamming on the specific typewriter it was created for.
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  #39  
Old 23 October 2008, 02:16 AM
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lord_feldon lord_feldon is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troberg View Post
It's one of many standards. Every nation has their own variant on the standard. Completely different standards exist, such as the much praised Dvorak.
In what country is Dvorak the standard keyboard layout? I think you're using a different definition of "standard" than Insensible Crier.
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  #40  
Old 23 October 2008, 09:50 AM
Jaime Vargas Jaime Vargas is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troberg View Post
Defrag is not that important anymore, the effects are usually neglible. Modern file systems, much larger disk cache and faster disks has made it a non-issue.
Tell that to the folks at Diskeeper, who keep bombarding my work mailbox with mailings and white papers about how fragmentation is the source of all evil. I swear you could pressure them to claim that defragging the accountant's PC could make my paycheck appear early.
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