Tuesday, January 25, 2011
After yesterday's disastrous cat rescue attempt, I went to the hospital again this morning to get the hands looked at and now they look like this:
The bandages are not so much because my fingers have been completely mangled (because they haven't), but rather because I'm not supposed to use them for a few days, which includes typing. That means that I have to type with seven digits for the next few days.
So while we're on the subject, how does the Dvorak keyboard that I use compare in a situation like this? Seven digits is much slower than usual, but is it still relatively faster/more comfortable than Qwerty? This applet will tell us a bit.
Sample text from Wikipedia:
English dictionaries describe finger as meaning either one of the five digits including the thumb, or one of the four excluding the thumb (in which case they are numbered from 1 to 4 starting with the index finger closest to the thumb). Linguistically, it appears that the original sense was to include the thumb as a finger: the word is derived from *penkwe-ros (also rendered as *penqrós which was, in the inferred Proto-Indo-European language, a suffixed form of *penkwe (or *penqe), "five", which has given rise to many Indo-European-family words (tens of them defined in English dictionaries) that involve or flow from concepts of fiveness.
That gives us the following:
Unusable fingers right now are fourth from the left, plus fourth from the right. The thumb doesn't really count because the spacebar can be hit with the unhurt left thumb although admittedly I'm not used to using it for that purpose. Now that I think about it my left thumb never really does anything when using the computer.
Left index finger: Dvorak 14%, Qwerty 21%
Right index finger: Dvorak 20%, Qwerty 19%
Looks to be about the same. One interesting thing though is that Qwerty is easier to type with one hand because Dvorak is optimized for two hands, with all the vowels on the left. I don't have any sources to prove that but that seems to be the case. The Korean keyboard is quite similar to this too with a lot of left-right hand alteration that is great for two hands but not so fun when a cat has reserved the use of one of your hands and you only have one to spare.
Anyway, that's probably enough typing for now. Apparently I'm supposed to leave the fingers alone as much as possible today.