Doing things via muscle memory instead of thinking about it. - Wargaming Forum and Wargamer Forums
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-20-14, 03:47 AM Thread Starter
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Default Doing things via muscle memory instead of thinking about it.

I was typing up a few paragraphs for my parents who happen to be semi computer illiterate. They were dictating what they wanted typed and I was doing it.

About half way through they commented that I never looked at the keyboard when typing and wondered how I knew where the keys were.

I actually had to stop and think about how I learned to do it. When I was in school I took a semester of learning how to type. (I didn't feel like taking a harder course.) But during it I know that I had to constantly look at the keyboard for typing.

I also worked at a call center for a time and the interview required me to do a typing test. My score was around 20-25 WPM. Typing tests I did recently put me at around 40 WPM.

We had a computer at home for years and I know for a fact that I never memorized the keyboard.

So what happened? Did I finally learn after 16 years how to type or did I know all the time but whenever I was forced into a situation where I had to type did I lose the skill? I'm honestly not sure.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-20-14, 03:54 AM
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Like learning any skill, practice makes you better. You do something enough times and you eventually learn the most optimum way to do it (assuming you know generally what that way is). And you can still learn bad habits along the way, but generally speaking you learn through enough experience. I mean you don't have to stop and concentrate on how to walk do you?
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-21-14, 05:04 PM Thread Starter
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Like learning any skill, practice makes you better. You do something enough times and you eventually learn the most optimum way to do it (assuming you know generally what that way is). And you can still learn bad habits along the way, but generally speaking you learn through enough experience. I mean you don't have to stop and concentrate on how to walk do you?
Guess you're right, though I find it depressing that it took 16 years to learn a skill.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-21-14, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Reaper45 View Post
though I find it depressing that it took 16 years to learn a skill
Were you truly committed to learning that skill for that whole time? I play guitar a lot, but not all of it I would consider practice. I tried learning a song the other day that I couldn't play a couple years ago and now I am somehow able to play all the riffs despite not feeling any different about my ability to play the genre. Years of using a thing with your hands builds a finite understanding of the surface you're dealing with, and eventually it seems like it just pops into place despite you not really noticing any difference in how you're doing it. It's kinda like learning to drive standard is for your feet

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-22-14, 02:58 AM Thread Starter
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Were you truly committed to learning that skill for that whole time? I play guitar a lot, but not all of it I would consider practice. I tried learning a song the other day that I couldn't play a couple years ago and now I am somehow able to play all the riffs despite not feeling any different about my ability to play the genre. Years of using a thing with your hands builds a finite understanding of the surface you're dealing with, and eventually it seems like it just pops into place despite you not really noticing any difference in how you're doing it. It's kinda like learning to drive standard is for your feet
For the year of grade 11 that I took it I did my best, I also took two other computer courses those years so I think I should have learned faster than what I did.

Funny story about standards, I learned to drive in a standard and I drove a standard for several years, I have an automatic now but I still act like I'm driving a standard.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-22-14, 05:22 AM
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Muscle memory is a real thing. Many people have trouble recalling their entrence code to their building but standing infront of the terminal the hand knows.

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-22-14, 06:11 AM
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muscle memory is quite amazing, like everything about the human body, we can learn how to actually do these things in our sleep. like I could, potentially play my bass in my sleep, and if I actually fell asleep with it strapped on, I wouldnt put it past my subconcious to play something.

Point being, and getting back on topic, what happened was due to the increasing influence of Keyboard setup, even when your typing with the pointer on the new consoles, the keyboards layout stays, more or less, the same. and once you took that typing course, you didnt just stop typing and go back to hand writing all of a sudden did you? you probably kept typing to us on here, on facebook, on myspace, on imugur, on flickr, whatever social media tickles you in the naughty places.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-22-14, 06:04 PM
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My muscle has memory nudge nudge wink wink say no more



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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-22-14, 10:33 PM
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Definitely true - musical instruments, especially piano, often rely on it. In fact, sometimes I'm unable to play a piece if I try and think about the notes, but if I just let my fingers remember they can do it themselves! It's really weird, having the music in front of me often makes things worse instead of better.

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-17-14, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Reaper45 View Post
Guess you're right, though I find it depressing that it took 16 years to learn a skill.
Some people tend to always look on the keyboard and never really try to type without looking. You have to try, in order to learn. If you never look up you might not learn it because you are simply used to see where your fingers go. When this optical feedback is missing, most people will not be able to type.

I had a course once, where I was supposed to learn typing with all 10 fingers and without looking on the keyboard. Before that I used a few fingers, but not all and looked on the keyboard, not the screen (very seldom - I could see what I typed so why look up?). They way you do it is to start with few letters. We only typed fff jjj ffd jjk fdf jkj... in the first lesson. Of course without looking. First you might make a few mistakes but over time you will just get where the letters are and you don't have to think about it anymore.

That way you can learn it in a few weeks, if you keep practicing. The more you use it, the faster you will learn. And to concentrate on just a few letters and add a few more over the course of time helps to intensify the practice. Pretty dull, though.
I still do not write "the correct way" with all fingers, but I use most of them. Usually you are supposed to have a "fixed" position (most keyboards have marks on the f and j, telling you, that this is where your trigger finger should rest). My hands move a lot and I use the first three fingers more than the last two. *shrugs* Works for me.

I am around 65 words per minute that way. Maybe I could improve it, if I would restart the lessons and try to use the "correct way" of 10 finger typing but... it's so dull. >_>
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