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Inside the head of Charlie Bader

Think "Being John Malkovich" when Malkovich goes inside his own head.
So how did you get here: This guy must have a lot of free time on his hands.

No, I'm just a knowledge junkie who can touch-type.

Penmanship Flunkie

I was the absolute last person to finish all of my penmanship assignments in 1st grade. It was traumatic to be on the letter "m" when the rest of the class was already at recess. I excelled at every other subject in school except for boring things like literature. I was the geeky kid always correcting the other kids' grammar and the teachers the differnce between mass and weight. I also had a speech disorder and saw a speech therapist. They called it "tongue thrust". I called it a waste of time. Education should be 50% mandatory skills and 50% exploration of structured options. Some people learn at exceptional high rates when they are driven by a thirst for knowledge on a particular subject.

I'm So Special

My wife is an Occupational Therapist and works with children with various disabilities. She has some students that exhibit similar characteristics to the ones I have described. They have horrible penmanship, but appear gifted otherwise. They love the keyboard.

Is it a handicap?

Yes, I believe that I am handicapped when my only tool is a pen. I am unable to keep up taking notes, because writing is so slow for me. Give me a keyboard, however, and I will tend to dominate.

Motor-Neuron Connection

How does it feel to be Charlie Bader? Well, it sometimes feels like my hands are not really part of my body, as they can't keep up, even with a keyboard. This is especially true after I've drank about 5 cups of coffee. When I have to fall back to a pen, it becomes somewhat frustrating trying to keep up. The nice thing with a keyboard is that if you do make a mistake, you can go back and correct it. Even though the keyboard can't keep up with the brain, it is fast enough to allow a train of thought to develop. With a pen, it just doesn't happen- at least not the same way.

Keyboarding Vs. Hunt'n Peck'r

I call someone who can't touch type a "Hunt'n Peck'r". When they type their fingers look like a chicken picking up grains of food. I sometimes find myself judging people who can't touch type. I struggle to understand why they wouldn't make the extra effort to buckle down and take a class on something so important. It pays off big-time over the course of a lifetime. Thanks Mrs. Pfisterer! Keyboarding has allowed me to write documents for work very quickly. People come to me when they want a clear, concise, technically accurate answer in writing. It has allowed me to write and test software very quickly. It also has allowed me to put together this website and 5 others like it. I look to the future to when I can put all of my knowledge down on the screen to share with the world.

Why Some People Can't Touch-Type

Many reasons. 1. Typing was always considered "women's work", even in 1981 when I took the class. 2. If a woman had typing and a Master's Degree on her resume, she would be given a secretarial job. If just the Masters Degree, she was manager material. 3.If a guy took typing class, he was considered a sissie. Who's a sissie now? 4. Few predicted the personal computer. Everyone was stuck in the one typewriter per office mentality until about 1987. 5. Many people still refuse to accept the keyboard as being the most important tool (after the hammer of course).

Mouse Intensive Applications are Inefficient

The mouse is highly overrated. It takes a lot of time to switch from the keyboard to the mouse and back. You have to find the home keys and then you lose your rhythym. A mouse is prone to errors because it requires more coordination, there is more time involved processing mouse events (resolving screen coordinates vs. a switch statement). A menu tree can be traversed an order of magnitude faster with a keyboard than a mouse. Try this: hit the "windows key", then "P", then "enter" then "n" to open Notepad. Then type "Alt-f" then "X". Then try doing the same thing with the mouse- you end up traversing with the mouse quite a bit. I would prefer to do just about everything with the keyboard except drawing. And for drawing, not use a mouse, but a light-pen on a small flat panel display where your mouse pad would go. Just the image you are drawing would be shown on the light-pen display.

Non-Standard Menu Accelerators

There ought to be a standard for menu accellerators. For example, this Windows 98SE version of Notepad uses Alt-S-F for Search Find, whereas just about every other app uses Alt-F-S. So when I use this program after another, I always seem to mess up and have to relearn (~300 uSecs- but that adds up). People who don't touch-type never understand the connection between the brain and the muscles of the hand. There is NO thought involved, your hands just move. The first time you are able to sing a song while playing the guitar is similarly unforgettable. A connection is made within your brain that will remain with you the rest of your life.

Enter the Search Engine

Google has changed everything when it comes to gathering information. It is much faster than flipping through pages. Or taken to extremes, driving to the bookstore, finding they don't have what you need, special ordering it and finding that the book you ordered also doesn't have what you need, storing the book full of useless drivel and ultimately giving up. The Internet allows you to find what you are looking for almost immediately. There is some talent involved in sorting out the useful information from random data. That is why it should be called "information mining" instead of "data mining". Credit: Paul Evermon

Albert Einstein
"He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice."

Overhead Space

They say we use what 10% of our brain? It is easy to see why. There is a lot of overhead involved. Talking, using the mouse, waiting for an application to open, the whole book thing, eating, sleeping, showering, driving, watching serial-access discrete-channel media known as TV, changing channels, waiting for your show to come on, advertisements etc. It's no wonder we use a small fraction of our brain. Is the brain-connector as seen in the Matrix a bad thing? Learn Jujitsu in a few seconds. I don't think it is that far off. We need to get rid of a lot of this BS overhead first. Are you with me or against me? 10% myth.

Albert Einstein
"Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking."

Ken Slauson- Muscle Memory

Ken Slauson pointed out to me that the subject of this entire page is called "muscle memory". He also pointed out that on my Kenai Gold page, that I mistakenly entered 1998 instead of 1898 because we are so used to typing 19xx. So true. Thanks Ken! More Einstein Quotes.
Do you really think I'm serious!?
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