Maybe this is a relic of my classical piano days, but I love typing fast. I regularly take typing tests for fun, and average around 125 words per minute in a 1 minute burst. After a while, I wanted to see if there were ways that I could type faster. I thought about formatting my keyboard as a Dvorak keyboard, but after digging around, I decided that the gains wouldn’t be worth the amount of time that it takes to learn a new keyboard. If I wanted to really type faster, I needed to make a massive leap. Enter: stenography.
Stenography is built on the idea that instead of typing one key for each letter sequentally, you type stroke chords (aka pressing multiple keys at once) to type words. So, with one press of multiple keys, you can type full words. Stenography is most notably used in court reporting. With proper practice, stenographers can type upwards of 200 words per minute, while the average talking speed is 150 words per minute.
However, stenography is incredibly expensive. Stenographer machines cost thousands of dollars, and most software is proprietary. With everything that is locked down, there are communities trying to make it more open, and in this case, the Open Steno Project is that community. They focus on giving people access to cheap (and sometimes free) hardware, use an open source software and wiki to give people the ability to learn and use shorthand, and have community groups for asking questions.
I’ll keep this page updated with my progress as I start through the journey of typing even faster.