Triple Your Typing Speed - The Ultimate Guide to Keyboard Mastery | Ali Abdaal | Skillshare

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Triple Your Typing Speed - The Ultimate Guide to Keyboard Mastery

teacher avatar Ali Abdaal, Doctor + YouTuber

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Welcome to the Class


    • 2.



    • 3.

      Class Project


    • 4.

      How to Instantly Boost Your Typing Speed


    • 5.

      The Secret of Finger Placement


    • 6.

      How to Build Your Muscle Memory


    • 7.

      How to Fix Your Typing Weaknesses


    • 8.

      The Shortcuts to Faster Typing


    • 9.

      How to Supercharge Your Typing With Apps


    • 10.

      Exclusive Bonus Materials


    • 11.

      How to Choose the Perfect Keyboard


    • 12.

      How to Sit Properly for Comfort and Speed


    • 13.

      Thanks for Watching


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About This Class

Typing really fast is one of those skills that can genuinely improve our productivity and our creativity, and it also looks really cool as well.

My FREE Skillshare Bonus Resources
As I mentioned in the course, I’ve now made a bunch of free resources for all of my Skillshare classes, exclusively for my Skillshare students. They’re packed with additional course-related content for every class, and will help you refresh what you’ve learnt, as well as explore some of the other classes you haven’t taken yet. Check it out here.


In this class we'll go over all the basic things like how to find the perfect keyboard and how to properly place your fingers, but we'll spend most of the class talking about the tips and tricks that can actually move the needle for your typing speed. 

Who am I?

My name's Ali, I'm a doctor and YouTuber and teacher here on Skillshare. I'm the fastest typist that I know, with a typing speed of around 150 words per minute consistently. In this class I'll be teaching you everything I know about how to type really fast.

My website / blog -
My weekly podcast -
Weekly email newsletter -
Instagram -
Twitter -
Facebook -

The typing test I've been using for years:

My custom typing test:

Fix your typing weaknesses:

Alfred alternative for Windows:
My IQUnix Keyboard:

Meet Your Teacher

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Ali Abdaal

Doctor + YouTuber

Top Teacher

Hi there,

I'm Ali, a YouTuber, podcaster, entrepreneur, and online teacher. I graduated from medical school at the University of Cambridge in 2018 and worked as a doctor for two years. Now, I live in London, spending my time making videos, doing podcasts and writing my first non-fiction book.

I started my YouTube journey in 2017, making videos about study techniques and my medical school experience. The channel grew dramatically over the next few years, and I started making videos about broader topics like productivity, wealth, and how to lead a happier, more fulfilled life. This journey on YouTube, along with my love of teaching, led me to where I am now with a wide range of courses on Skillshare.

If you'd like to find out more, please do follow my Skillshare profi... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Welcome to the Class: Typing really fast is one of those skills that can really improve our own productivity and creativity, and it also looks really cool as well. One hundred and fifty seven words per minute, there we go, world record. Hey, everyone. My name is Ali, I'm a doctor and YouTuber and a teacher here on Skillshare. I'm also the fastest typist I know, and my speed is round about 150 words per minute fairly consistently. In this class, I'm going to teach you everything I know about how to type really fast. We'll go over the basic fundamentals like how to find the perfect keyboard, where to place your fingers, how to sit properly. But we're going to spend most of the class talking in depth about the specific tips that you can use to move the needle for your own typing. I'm a big believer that getting really fast at typing is one of those things that can genuinely change your life, but it does take quite a lot of practice. But I'm hoping that if you take this class, you'll find the tips in here useful to hopefully help accelerate your learning process for becoming an absolute beast at typing. Thank you for watching and hopefully I'll see you on the other side. 2. Introduction: Before we dive into how we're going to massively supercharge boost up our typing speed, I want to spend a little bit of time talking about why we should bother in the first place. If you're watching this, chances are you're already sold on why having a fast typing speed is the best thing ever, but here are a few more reasons that you might not have thought of. The first one and the most important one obviously, is that it just looks really cool and impresses people. I work as a doctor in the UK's National Health Service, and by far the biggest compliment I get from other colleagues and senior doctors is not, "Hey, Ali, you're such a good doctor." No one ever says that. It's, "Wow, you type really fast." It just really looks cool, especially in an industry where if you're around lots of real adults who don't type very fast and they're typing with two fingers, it just looks cool. Secondly and possibly more importantly, when you can type fast, you are just immediately more efficient and more productive when you're on a computer. This depends on what line of work you're in. For me as a doctor, I'm doing a tonne of typing, most of my day spent typing up patient notes in the electronic patient records. As a YouTuber, a lot of the bulk of planning and scripting videos involves typing, and as a writer now I'm writing a book, obviously that requires large amounts of typing. For all these different industries, even if my typing speed is 10 percent faster or 20 percent faster that leads to a measurable, noticeable increase in my own productivity. Thirdly, typing fast is helpful, because it actually helps us become more creative. This might sound weird, but often if we're sitting on a computer, which lots of us do all the time, and we're trying to be creative about something, so ideas for a book or for YouTube channel or podcast or newsletter or creative stuff, probably art doesn't apply to this, but just generally creative stuff that involves typing. In an ideal world, we want that to be basically like as we think about something, we want it to be translated into the computer. If you type fast, then thinking about something can very easily be translated into the computer and in a way, writing then becomes a proxy for thinking. Whereas if you're typing really slowly, it's like you're thinking and then you're typing and then you're writing, and there's just that typing link between the thinking and the creation part. It's going to sound weird, but genuinely, as my typing speed has improved over time, I've noticed my ability to brainstorm and be creative about whatever I'm doing has just increased proportionally with the typing speed. Now if you want to be a professional typist, whatever that means, apparently you need a typing speed of 65-75 words per minute. If you're in my audience, if you've see my YouTube channel, chances are you probably have a typing speed close to or higher than the speed for professional typist, which is just nice. But overall, typing fast is a pretty worthwhile endeavor to pursue. I'm going to be honest, it's not like needle moving in terms of your productivity. Most of us when it comes to our productivity, the things we struggle with are getting started, your procrastination, and not getting distracted by throwing a phone away. I think one of the biggest increases to productivity is just learning to enjoy the journey and learning to have more fun. Increasing our typing speed using keyboard shortcuts, using the right apps, it's all in that final 10 percent of the things that actually make a difference to our own productivity into our own lives. But, hey, if you're okay with sitting down and doing the work, if you're not one of those people that really struggles with procrastination or even if you are, the time that you're spending working, you are automatically more efficient when you're typing fast. Let's dive into the content of this class and let's learn how to type ridiculously fast. 3. Class Project: Welcome to the class. In this video, we're going to go over the class projects. Really the only way to improve our typing speed is to practice. Just for this class, I have created an exclusive custom typing test on the website 10FastFingers. That'll be linked in the projects and resources section, and we'll put the URL here as well. When you go to that URL, it will take you to a typing test. What I want you to do for the class project is; do this typing test, and then post a screenshot of your results as your class project. Then over time, as your typing speed changes, or increases, or hopefully increases rather than decreases, you'll be able to update the class project with your new speed. But it would be really interesting to see how many people actually stick to the practice schedule and actually improve the typing speed. But please, right now, go to the URL in the video description or in this one over here, do the typing test, and I'd love to see how you do. I am going to do it right now. We'll see how I do. You'll notice that these are words that vibe with me and are my favorite words. Let's give this a go. Let's see how I do. Normally this website 10FastFingers has the top 200 words in the English language. This is not the top 200 words in the English language. Let's see how we do. One words per minute on this one. My usual when it's the top 200 words is 150 words per minute but would love for you guys to post a screenshot of what you get over here. Hopefully, we can increase our typing speed over time. That's the class project, that'll be in the projects and resources section. I'll see you in the next video. 4. How to Instantly Boost Your Typing Speed: In this lesson, I'm going to give you the single biggest thing that's going to massively improve your typing speed from day 1. That is being able to use the appropriate keyboard shortcuts to correct our mistakes. Now, when we're typing often we are going to be making mistakes and stuff as we're typing. What we want is to build the muscle memory for how we can correct to those mistakes. I'm going to type something. What did I actually type might make there were extremely. I'm trying to type in the word, ordinary. Now let's say I put in this typo on there whatever that means. Now, the wrong way and the new way of correcting this mistake is back. Basically, anytime you're finding yourself pressing "Backspace" more than twice, you're probably doing it wrong and there's probably a more efficient way of doing it. Let's say, I have got this word completely wrong. The way that I would actually correct this on a Mac is I would use option backspace, and that will delete the entire word. If you're on a Windows, it's control and backspace that deletes your last word. If I make a mistake, I can just option backspace and obviously commands the ink on doing it to get this back. Option backspace, really quick way of significant increasing your typing speed because now you're not like massively tapping every time you need to correct a mistake. Now, what are other ways that we can do this? Now option backspace is how you delete an individual word. But let's say you want to delete a whole line. This actually comes in handy very fairly often on a Mac to delete the whole line it's commands and backspace, gets rid of the entire line. Let's say if I'm typing something and I make like insignificant mistake that needs a whole line to be deleted instead of back and instead of option back, I will instead just use command and back, delete the whole line and that's all fine. If you are on Windows, then shift and backspace helps you delete the entire line. Now learning these keyboard shortcuts and committing them to memory, and committing them to muscle memory more importantly. I've had so many comments, I made a video talking about this and I've had so many comments of people being like, "Oh my God, that one tip just massively boosted my typing speed." People just don't realize you can do this. Option backspace delete a single word, command backspace or shift backspace in Windows to delete an entire line. What about if we want to correct mistakes in any other way. Let's say, I've made a mistake somewhere in the middle of the line. Let's say I put the word ashy over there even though it's entirely not necessary. Now, let's say I get to the end of the line and I realize I've made a mistake somewhere before the line. Now the noob way to do this is to pick up the mouse, click on the "Line" and then delete stuff. We're not going to use the mouse. The other noob way of doing it is to go arrow, and hold the arrow down to get to the right point. Again, fairly noob way of doing this, that's not how we want to do things. Instead, we can continue to use these exact same keyboard shortcuts, option and command. Option and arrow key takes us to the start or end of a new word. If I want to jump around the lines very quickly, I want to get to this ashy mistake that I've made, option left and I'm at ashy and I can go left and right to select it. Now, if I want to get rid of that word in particular, obviously I can use option backspace, or I could use option shift left to highlight the word. That means I could immediately replace it with something if I wanted to. By the way, most people know this, but you can use shift and the arrow keys to highlight stuff using the keyboard. Therefore, if you're using shift and option, you're highlighting whole words one at a time. If you're doing shift and command, you're highlighting an entire line. Overall, we get a mistake midline, we do not touch the mouse because we're not allowed to use the mouse more on that later. We're not allowed to repeatedly match the left arrow key, instead we're got an option 1, 2, 3, 4, and we've got the word. If you haven't done this thing before, it's going to seem really really weird. But trust me, within about a day of doing this, it'll become so much a part of your natural vibe that you just will think, "Oh my God, how could I have ever done anything any differently." Typically before shortcut wisest, you can do the same thing with command. If you do command left and right or shift left and right, I think on Windows, but maybe it doesn't work in Windows, I think whatever is happening on Windows, you can use command left and right to go to the start or end of line. On Windows, you can definitely use home and end on your keyboard, which are often in a weird position, but you can use home and end to go to the start or end of a line, which also comes in handy. Putting it all together, let's say I've just typed in "Somewhere over the rainbow was up gh there's a land that I heard of once n alullabu ad," and I want to correct this. Let's think about how we can incorporate all these keyboard shortcuts to fix these mistakes. Somewhere over the rainbow was, I'm just going to go, up backspace way. Now I'm using option to skip to the next way up highlight it and replace it. Now, "There's a land that I heard of once n alullabu," becomes a lullaby, then I can just delete the whole word. Hopefully you saw what was going on there. Basically I'm just using a combination of alt, left and right command left and right to go to the start or end of a line. Shift to highlight things that need to highlight, backspace to delete things I need to delete, and that is the thing that you want to be practicing to instantly boost your typing speeds. Thanks for watching, and I'll see you in the next video. 5. The Secret of Finger Placement: Welcome back. Let's talk about finger placement now and like the anatomy of the keyboard and the anatomy of the keys, just a quick little foundational tip to get out of the way. On basically all keyboards, the F and the J key, assuming you're using the QWERTY keyboard layout, the F and the J key will have a little thing on them that will make you be able to feel where the F and the J key are. On this Apple Magic Keyboard, you'll see it's just a little thing at the bottom of F and just a little thing at the bottom of J. Without looking, I can return to my resting home position, which is index finger on F and J, middle finger on K and D, ring finger on L and S, and then pinky on A and pinky on semicolon. This is the default typist's position. If you ever take a typing course or anything like that, they will tell you you always want to return to the home position. Usually, when I type at least I have my palms resting on the desk. But some people would like to elevate the palms by using some thing. You don't really need it. Palms resting, returning to home. Now, this is the position where all the magic is being worked from. Let's now talk about what fingers you use for typing. Now, if you're a complete pro, like the world's best typists will be using all 10 of their fingers in various different points. I don't use 10 of my fingers. I actually broadly use just these six and the thumbs obviously. Thumbs for the space bar and then these six, like my pinky is not particularly powerful. If you're a pro, what you actually should do is when you're typing and you're pressing A, you're pressing it with your pinky. But I don't do that broadly. When I press A, I press it with my ring finger. I've just trained that so much that I just feel so much more natural for me to press A using my ring finger rather than using my pinky. But the general rule of thumb is use as many fingers as possible because there's another principle and typing, which is the minimum movement principle. You want to move your fingers as little as possible to be able to hit the keys. The people that go all the way from above or typing like this, it's going to be less efficient. If you watch an actual speed typist, the way they type in just looks like this. It doesn't seem like their fingers are moving very much. Whereas something like this where the fingers are moving like absolutely loads. That's actually not going to make your typing particularly fast. This is what mine looks like. This is me typing, so there's a little bit of movement. I'm not 100 percent pro at this. I'm trying to get my typing speed up to 200 words per minute. I know for that I need to move less than I do and potentially start bringing the pinkys into it. But broadly, yeah, I do use the pinky for shift. The shift keys, but I don't really use the pinky is anything else. Another important strategy that a lot of pro typists use is called the rollover technique. What the rollover technique means is basically, you don't have to wait for a key to get unimpressed before pressing the next one. If I'm typing in, I don't know, hello and the new way of doing is typing H and then E and then L and L and then O. As you get faster at typing, you type H and then basically while you still got H down, you're pressing E. You're rolling from the H into the E so for example, one thing that I type quite a lot often is like S-A-F for Safari because I use Alfred which I'll talk more about a minute. If I'm typing S-A-F, I'm not typing it S and then A and then F. I'm just rolling my fingers across S and A and then going to F. It's like if you ever see like a pianist play, they don't one at a time. They roll their fingers across the keyboard. It's the same with typing. That is a thing that you can do to get really quick at typing stuff. Because then you're not waiting for the key to get depressed before pressing the next one. Overall, coming back to this idea of finger placement, we want to try and not really look at the keyboard when we're typing, obviously touch typing. We've got this home position to return to when we need to. Just as a general tip, if you're trying to improve your typing speed, focus on accuracy in the first instance, because if you're accurate then the speed will naturally follow. Whereas if you're fast but inaccurate, it's a lot harder to correct that particular mistake. That was all about finger position and the mechanics and the anatomy of typing. Thanks for watching and let's now move on to the next lesson. 6. How to Build Your Muscle Memory: All right. Welcome back. Let's talk about how to build the muscle memory. The answer here is we just need to practice. In this video, in this lesson, I want to walk you through my favorite way of practicing, which is the website 10FastFingers. I'm going to go on Safari, I'm going to find, and you know what? Let's login with my actual details. This is what 10FastFingers looks like. Unfortunately, it always has a load of ads on it, but it's my favorite way of doing a typing test because what they do, is they look at the top 200 words in the English language, and I think they've got this in different languages as well, and it just feels like a very natural way of testing one's typing speed. So let's do a typing test right now. One-hundred-and-forty-six. I made lots of mistakes there towards the end. But basically, I have been doing this since about the age of 13, where every few weeks I would just decide, you know what, I'm going to test out my typing speed. It's optically deliberate practice, but it's just a way of like bench-marking your typing speed and hopefully increasing over time. Then the more you do this over time, the more you realize little things that you can do to tweak your typing speed, like pressing the keys little bit less hard or a little bit more hard or like using shift or you're using Command A to delete a text if you get something wrong, all these little tricks that you'll pick up as you do typing test on this website. In terms of how much time you need to put into practicing your typing speed, we actually have a case study on this, because one of my team members, Angus, who is sitting over there and behind the camera for this course, his typing speed was 60 words per minute a few months ago when he first discovered this website. Then every day for about a month, he just practiced for 10 minutes on 10FastFingers, and now his typing speed is 90 words per minute. Basically, 50 percent increase in typing speed in about 30 days of just 10 minutes a day. That's pretty reasonable. If you could get a 50 percent increase to your typing, if I can get a 50 percent increased at my typing speed to 225 words per minute in 30 days, I would absolutely do it. I think this website is really a nice way of being able to practice your typing speed. So have a stop, do some practice, post some screenshots in the class project section if you like, and we'll see you in the next video. 7. How to Fix Your Typing Weaknesses: Welcome back. We are not talking about how we're going to correct our mistakes when typing. Now, this is an important one. Because given that we've all been typing for years, we all have idiosyncrasies in the way that we type. For each one of us, like whoever you are watching this, you've probably got different weirdnesses of your typing than I do. What we want to do, is we want to find a way of correcting our mistakes so that we're improving the worst aspects of our typing. Because generally in life, improving your weaknesses is not the way to excellent performance. It's actually by focusing on your strengths and playing to your strengths that we tend to excel in most things. For example, Rafael Nadal, famous tennis player, he often runs around his backhand. His backhand is good, but it's not amazing, but Rafael runs around it to play a forehand and his forehand is his strength and therefore, he capitalizes on that strength. Equally, Lionel Messi takes like 80 percent of the shots with his left foot and only like 20 percent of them with his right and if you look at how many times he touches the ball, he's very, very, very heavily leaning on his left foot. He's not saying that, "Oh, I want my foot proportion to be 50-50, " he's like capitalizing on his strength. That's just a random side, which I've read in a book recently. But when it comes to typing, the thing that's slowing our typing down is our slowest words, not our fastest ones. We don't get better at typing by improving the things we're good at, we get better at typing by improving our weaknesses. The best website I found for this, is Because basically what they do, is they drill specific aspect of typing and it recognizes what you're struggling with, and then it moves onto the next thing. You can see over here, I've got my account, I've been practicing this over the last few weeks. For each of the 26 keys, 26 letters of the alphabet, they've got this whole practice regimen. So you can see already I've done E-N-I-T-R-L and now this is L. L is highlighted and so it's trying to help me drill that just the L key and we'll see how I do. Let's try this now. You can see here, so my average typing speed, 32.9 per minute. That's not true. Best typing speed 32.9, confidence level 0.96, learning rate 271.4 words per hour. Not bad. I've moved on from L. Now, I've moved on to S and it says not calibrated, need more samples. Now, it's going to be testing my speed on the letter S. Let's see how this goes. It said that was green there already. Let's try A. I think my A is going to be really bad. It's not too bad actually. You can see basically it'll go green if you're good at the letter. So I'm good at S and A. Then it goes red or orange or yellow depending on if you're bad at it, and then it will just drill that specific letter. This is a fantastic way of improving our weaknesses when it comes to typing. You can make a profile, you can share your results, you can compare yourself with other people. Let's just try multiplayer and see what happens. Multiplayer is quite fun to do as well, where you're literally competing against people like head-to-head. Let's go. Hey, I won the race. Yeah, this is fun. It's a wave-like competing against other people head-to-head, and you can just be like, [inaudible] and see how your typing speed compares to other people in real time, which is cool. But yeah, keep your great way to help improve your weaknesses and typing. I need to drill like the A and the S more so I can actually start using my pinky, because I need my pinky to get more force, but yeah. Thanks for watching and I'll see you in the next video. 8. The Shortcuts to Faster Typing: All ready. Welcome back. In this lesson we're talking about how you can use keyboard shortcuts to speed up your typing. Keyboard shortcuts are really helpful. Generally, the vibe is if we want to improve our typing speed and our productivity overall, we don't want to be using the mouse if we can avoid it. We want to switch to a keyboard first mentality, i.e in general, whatever I can do with the keyboard, I'm going to do with the keyboard because for the most part, doing things with the keyboard is much more efficient than doing things with the mouse. This is something that pro gamers have known for absolutely decades. In fact, it's a slur within the gaming community to be a clicker, someone who clicks on their buttons because everyone knows that that's just a newbie thing to do. If you look at games like World of Warcraft and StarCraft and things, the pros are using keyboard shortcuts, they're using the entire keyboard and they're very rarely using their mouse other than to point at stuff. Whereas if you're using your mouse to point and click on stuff, generally, there are faster ways of doing it by using the keyboard. Now, practically what this means is that whenever you find yourself doing something with the mouse, or for me, whenever I find myself doing something with the mouse, I will always think, "Okay, is there a way that I could have done this with the keyboard instead?" For example, earlier today, I'm using QuickTime Player to do a screen recording of my MacBook. Now in QuickTime Player, when you open it up, you can hit File and then you can hit New Screen Recording, it's grayed out right now because I'm currently recording the screen. That's been how like for the first two or three lessons of this class, I was hitting File and New Screen Recording. But then anytime I find myself clicking something repeatedly, like turning on a screen recording, I always think, "Okay, there's going to be a better way of doing this. What is the keyboard shortcut?" Conveniently on a lot of things, they will tell you what the keyboard shortcut is if you just hover over the menu item. I know that the command Control and N is the keyboard shortcut for a new screen recording and that's the keyboard shortcut that I use to create this very screen recording. A little bit messy. I know. The way that this also works is I've got my little thing over here, but this is Notion. Now, let's say I was, I don't know, working within a Notion page. If you want to create a page in Notion, the newbie way of doing it is to click this thing and then it is turned into page. Now you have a page, you click on it and you type in title of page, and now you can type in whatever you want. The Pro way of doing it is to figure out what are the keyboard shortcuts for the thing that I want to do. For example, when it comes to creating a new page, I know I can use these slash commands. I can literally just do slash, PA, Enter. I've manually created a new page, but it's been so much more efficient than if I was clicking. That's creating a new page. Let's say I want a heading. Again, the newbie way of doing this in Notion, in Google Docs, in Word is to click on the thing, turn into a heading mode. That's the newbie way of doing it. Equally, if you were in Word, or Pages, or Google Docs, you would select the word, you'd go at the top in the toolbar, click heading. That's a little bit of a waste of time, especially if you're creating headings fairly regularly. But what you can recognize is that there is always a keyboard shortcut for this and on Notion and in a lot of things that's Command Option 1, and I just know that in most Word processing apps Command Option 1 will create a Heading 1, Command Option 2, Heading 2, Command Option 3, Heading 3, and then it varies depending on where you are. I know that that's the keyboard shortcuts. There's two benefits to this. The first one is that it improves my own productivity and efficiency when I'm using a computer. I call this digital fluency, or playing your device like an instrument. When you see a virtuoso pianist or a violinist play the device, it looks absolutely amazing. Equally, if you see someone pro at keyboard shortcuts using Photoshop, or Excel, or playing World of Warcraft, you think that this guy's really good or girl is really good at this thing because they're using the keyboard shortcuts. It's all about the keyboard shortcuts. That's one benefit. But the other benefit is that the more you have this keyboard first mentality of using keyboard shortcuts for everything, the more it actually increases your typing speed. Because when I'm on the computer, I spend 90 percent of my time on the keyboard. When a normal person is on the computer, they spend 90 percent of the time on the mouse. It's very hard to get faster at using a mouse. It's a lot easier and more efficient to get faster using a keyboard. The more you use your keyboard for keyboard shortcuts, the more your typing speed naturally increases over time. If you're the keyboard shortcut for bullet points, again, this is a bullet points. A newbie would select this text, turn into bullet list, and then you'd be able to do whatever you want from there. But if you're a pro, you recognize that in most Word processing apps, asterisk space creates a bullet point. This is a bullet. There's another one. Mistake. A bullet list using option and the backspace to delete the whole world. What's another one? Dashes often create bullet points as well. Yeah, so basically keyboard shortcuts are the way forward. Another really good one that is unappreciated as Commands W or Control and W if you're on Windows because it just closes your current screen. It doesn't quit the app. That's Command and Q. But Command W, let's have opened up Notion, and I want to close it and go onto something else. I would never ever navigate to my X button and click that because that's just really newbie and it's really slow. Instead, I'll just Command W and that's instantly gone. That is absolutely magic. Now the other thing that you might have noticed is that when I'm opening apps, I'm never going into my doc, wherever my doc is. I don't even know where it is. Going into my doc and clicking on the app. Let's say I want to open Safari. Newbie way of doing it is going into doc, finding Safari, clicking Safari. It's really slow, really inefficient because we're using the mouse. The pro way doing it is using an app like Alfred or using an app like the max built-in Spotlight. I prefer Alfred personally, it's free, you can download it. It's a little bit better than the Spotlight in my opinion. But the equivalent on Windows is an app called this, don't know what it's called but we'll put a link over here, or you can use the Windows logo key. Basically the idea is that you want to be able to open up apps and files in search by just using your keyboard without having to touch your mouse. This is why I hide my doc on the Mac because I really just don't need it because I'm never going to use the doc. Instead, let's say I want to open Safari, Command Spacebar is my Alfred hotkey, and so this little search box pops up where I can see whatever I want, and then I just type in SAF and hit Enter, and automatically, Safari is opened. Not automatically, manually, but like it's so much more efficient, like light. I think to myself I want to open Safari, and then immediately, Safari is open because Command Space, SAF, Safari done. Really the principle here, and I talk about this a lot in my YouTube channel is that we want to be minimizing the time between thought and action. I have a thought of, "Let me open Safari", or I have a thought of, "Oh let me go on Facebook, or Instagram, or whatever", or "Let me go into The Verge and see what the latest tech news is." Let's use the Verge example. Let's say I'm thinking, "I wonder if Apple has released their thing recently. What's The Verge saying?" One way of doing it would be just to open Safari, and I've already got The Verge opened and then I can hit Accept. What I did there was I had the thought, I want to open The Verge and immediately my fingers were Command Spacebar SAF, Enter, the cursor is automatically at the location site, and so I'm typing in T-H-E-V, that's auto completing, I hit Enter with my pinky, and The Verge is opened. In real time, I have a thought, I want to open The Verge and see what the news is, so done. Less than a second to open up The Verge. Whereas again, normal person," I want to open The Verge and see what's going on Apple News." Mouse to the bottom Safari, and then. It just saves time, it saves so much time. In fact, an even more pro way of doing it using Alfred would just be to type in the website address because, probably similar. Yeah. The nice thing about Alfred is that it lets you search for absolutely anything. That was Let's say I decided I want to Google what is often, I use Google as a currency converter. If I'm buying something, I want to convert $1,000 into pounds, UK pounds. How much would a normal person do this? A normal person would go in Safari, click on the thing, go on, and then type in 1,000 USD and GBP, and then you would have the conversion. Still pretty fast because I'm pretty good at typing, not going to lie, but it just slow. Whereas if you use Alfred, you can just search. If you type in something that's not a website URL, it just automatically searches Google for you or whatever default search engine of choice you want to use. Let's say I want to open a folder. Now, I know that in my iCloud Drives in my documents, I have a folder called To Print, which is files that I put for printing. This is how a newbie would navigate that space. We're going to think, go on finder, go on iCloud Drive, go on Documents and then go on, where is it? Print, I'm looking for T to print, and I've navigated to my folder. You'll see the timer that this took quite a while. Now I've got my file and I can print it and I can do whatever I want with it. When you've got Alfred, what you can do is you hit Command Spacebar, you hit Spacebar again, and that gives you this Open File dialog, search for files on your Mac and open. Now I can literally just type in to print and because I know that that's the name of the folder, and it will just immediately open it. Again, in real time, I'm thinking to myself I need to print something, so I'm opening up Alfred, and I've just saved so much more time than I would've done by clicking. Again, this feels like nitpicky. This feels like not very much time saved, but genuinely, when you do this hundreds of times a day throughout a whole working day of like opening stuff and doing stuff on a computer, it just saves a huge amount of time by using an app like Alfred, or Spotlight or, the Windows logo key key of using the mouse. It has the side effect that also boosts your typing speed. Right now, I'm thinking, "Okay, I've made that point, what's the next point I want to make in here and some I'm thinking, "Okay, let's open up Notion." I have that thought. My fingers are already Command Spacebar typing in Notion, or I could even type Note, and it would work. N-O-T- E just by itself often doesn't work because I often use Apple Notes, and so here's how I would open up Notes. But now immediately because I've got Alfred, I'm thinking I want to open Notion. Notion gets opened just almost by instinct. Now I can look down and be like, "Okay, was there anything else I wanted to talk about in this lesson?" Yes, there is. That's the final point that I want to end with. Come on W is a exit Notion because I'm not a clicker, because I'm not a newbie. Final point I want to end with is that when you find yourself using the mouse for things, you can just Google keyboard shortcut for the thing. I often do this. If I find myself clicking on stuff, I would just Google keyboard shortcut for a new file in Final Cut Pro, and it will tell me what the keyboard shortcut is using the Google snippet thing, and then I'll know for next time, and then I try my best just to learn the keyboard shortcuts. Because once I've committed it to memory and muscle memory, it doesn't take very long for me to then start using the keyboard shortcut rather than using the mouse. Switch to a keyboard first mentality, it will change your life. Thank you for watching and I'll see you in the next lesson. Bye bye. 9. How to Supercharge Your Typing With Apps: All right, welcome back. Now, when it comes to typing, often the best way to increase your typing is to not have to type at all. It might sound weird based on what I said in the previous one about knowing using mouse. But what I'm talking about in this lesson is the power of using snippets and using apps that help you type things faster. What does this mean? Basically, there are lots of apps that let you do this. Conveniently, there's one built into macOS and iOS, and iPadOS, which is the keyboard tool and text replacement. If you're new, you go on System preferences, you go on Keyboard, where's Keyboard? You go on Keyboard and then go on Text. But if you're a pro, you will just type in keyboard over here on Alfred and then you would hit "Text". What does this do? Basically, replace whatever with whatever. It lets you create your own little snippets. For example, when I type in "!ar" And hit "Space", you will see that "How to study for exams - Evidence-based revision tips" and a YouTube link gets pasted. I realized that a big chunk of comments that I would get on my YouTube videos would be people asking, "How do I study for exams?" I would always think, "I want to link them to the video that I've made literally about this thing." After doing this two or three times, I realized, "Hang on, this is a waste of time. Let me just convert this into a snippet." Now, if I want to refer someone to this video!ar stands for active recall, and I can just paste this in and I've given them a really useful link, and people think, "Wow, Ali's taking the time to reply to my comment." Little do they know if they haven't watched this video, that actually just took me three keystrokes. Whether I'm on my Mac or if I'm on my iPhone or if on my iPad, all of this replacement thing is synchronized. What about for other stuff? People often ask me, "Ali, what keyboard do you have?" I have an!kb, which replaces it with an emoji. It tells you what it is and it gives them an affiliate link. I've made so much money off of this affiliate link for this keyboard, mostly because it's so easy to tell people when they ask. If someone else asks in the YouTube comments, I just type in!kb, and then that's all good. Even if you're not a creator, this is useful. Let's say you want to create a snippet for your email address. I've got, "!em" for mine, but you could do "*em" for yours. If you could replace that with Now *em, if I type it in, we'll replace it with your email address. This is really helpful if you're making a counter website, if you're filling in your details, if you're buying something on the Internet, we often have to type in our email address many times a day. At least I do. And so *em lets you automatically snippet that email address. If you're not on a Mac device, if you're not an Apple device then Windows has its own apps that let you do this. We'll put one in the resources area if you want to check it out. Alternatively, if you're feeling particularly frisky, then you can use Alfred as well. Alfred has their own built-in snippets feature, which is a little bit more advanced than the iOS built-in one, but the iOS built-in one has most of the features that you'd want to use. Other things, this is quite helpful my Muslims say [inaudible] , which basically means thank you, or blessings of God be upon you. It's a lot of effort to type that out, and so I've created a snippet that I type in jzk, and then it replaces it with this. Equally, if I want to say Salaam Alaikum to someone, this is funny, no one does this in real life on texts, but if I type in asa, it replaces it with [inaudible] and people would get that and think, "Whoa, that's a bit intense." It's pretty intense, but it's just funny because they don't realize that it just took me three keystrokes to send out this whole huge [inaudible] greeting message. Ia Insha'Allah, God willing, omw becomes, "On my way." I think that's one of the ones that's built into iOS. What's else do we have? If someone says salaam to me, the text-speak way of doing it is typing in waks. But if you have a text snippet, was becomes, [inaudible]. It's just funny. Whatever your own circumstances are, you will find a way for snippets to be useful. Let's say I need to get my VAT number,!vat automatically inserts my European VAT number. This is useful if I'm buying stuff online. It's just always helpful to have my VAT number to hand. Using snippets in this way lets you increase your typing speed, but in an artificial way because the best way to increase your typing speed is to let the computer do the typing for you. Snippets useful, anytime I find myself typing in something more than twice, I think, okay, let me create a snippet for this, and I don't ever have to type it out again in my life. Really, really helpful. Hopefully, that was useful. The other interesting app that you can use, which I don't really use very often because I used to use it quite a lot in med school when I was studying for exams and things, is called TextSniper. This is a cool app that lets you basically screenshot an area of your screen, but it will automatically convert the text in that screenshot to actual texts that you can just copy and paste somewhere. Because otherwise you're copying and pasting a screenshot image with text on it. But with text sniper, it becomes actual text. That's useful. A lot of medical students that use it, I don't really have any need to use it very much these days, but it's cool. Overall, try to find apps that help you eliminate the amount of actual typing you have to do, and that improves your typing speed immeasurably. Thank you so much for watching and I'll see you in the next video. 10. Exclusive Bonus Materials: Hello again, how's it going? I probably look a little bit older than when you're watching this class because I'm filming this after the fact. Because just to let you know, we have just added an enormous amount of totally free bonus material over to my website, which facilitates all of the different skill share classes that we have here on the platform. So if you head over to Ali, forward slash Skillshare, resources that lingual appear here and also down in the projects and resources section or wherever you happen to be seeing this Skillshare often changes the structure of the website, so it'll be linked somewhere on this page and also right here, so you can go to that URL and that will give you access to a bunch more bonus information relating to all of the different Skillshare classes. For some of those that might be Notion templates for some of them might be PDFs and worksheets and bonus material. It's all on the website, it's all completely free and you can check it out with that link. Anyway. I hope you enjoyed the class. I'd love it if you can leave a review if you haven't already and hopefully see you in the next one. Bye bye. 11. How to Choose the Perfect Keyboard: Welcome back. Let's talk about how to choose the perfect keyboard for typing fast. To be honest, really the main thing here is you want to pick a keyboard that you like. You like the sound and the feel of. I've got four here. I test keyboards fairly extensively, [NOISE] but I've landed on a few personal favorites having done extensive testing. Basically the first thing we want to figure out is do we want a membrane keyboard or do we want a mechanical keyboard. Mechanical keyboards [NOISE] generally sound louder and they are mechanical because of some weird like switch mechanism. Whereas membrane keyboards are the old school normal keyboard design. Then there's Apple keyboards, which [NOISE] have their own [NOISE] butterfly mechanism in the individual keys and feels slightly different to normal keyboards. Basically you've got normal keyboards like the Apple Magic Keyboard and you've got mechanical keyboards like Razor Protype or the IQUNIX F96, or the Keychron K2. Should you use a mechanical keyboard, some people swear by them because [NOISE] they just sound more tactile when you're typing on them. It feels when you're typing on them that you are [NOISE] actually doing legit typing whereas the issue with keyboard like the Apple Magic Keyboard, even though it's very good, is that typing on it, [NOISE] it feels less like you're typing. This is really weird, like if you try an mechanical keyboard, you'll get an idea for whether you like or don't like them. I'm 50 50. I spend quite a lot of time typing with mechanical keyboards, But then I also spend a lot of time typing with the Apple Magic Keyboard, which is probably my favorite keyboard of all time. It just works, and it's the keyboard I've got my fastest typing speed on, which is a 157 words per minute. My typing speed on mechanical keyboards is a little bit slower, so around about 150, 145. I think that's mostly because in mechanical keyboards, the keys travel more. With a keyboard like the Apple mechanical keyboard it's like you can literally touch a key and it will be pressed down, and it's very small and there's not much movement following the minimal movement principal. Whereas with a mechanical keyboard you hit a key, [NOISE] then there's quite a reasonable distance for it to go. Yeah, you get the idea. I'm bit slower with mechanical keyboards then with the Apple Magic Keyboard, but your mileage may vary. I actually pretty know. I suspect most people are faster with an Apple Magic Keyboard than they are with a whatever type mechanical keyboard. But if you prefer the look and the feel of mechanical keyboards, then it would make sense for you to use those. All right, secondly, let's talk about the difference between normal keyboards, i.e. rectangular ones and ergonomic keyboards. There are all fancy ergonomic keyboards that let your hands rest on a curved design. I've never really tried one. It's on my list to try, but I know some people that much prefer to use ergonomic keyboards, they tend not to say that those keyboards help them type faster. They tend to say those keyboards help because they've got carpal tunnel syndrome or helps them avoid repetitive strain injury. Having been using the computer for the last 20 years, I don't think I have repetitive strain injury or carpal tunnel syndrome from using a keyboard, but I do want to try out the ergonomic stuff. Either way, I think that they would be good for helping you learn how to type, especially if it's a keyboard that has the two halves separated because then you can't cheat, and you have to hit the appropriate keys on one half of the keyboard with that hand. Whereas otherwise you can do a lot of crisscrossing of hands, which is just a little bit inefficient. But try out an ergonomic Keyboard and see if it works for you. If you get wrist pain or carpal tunnel syndrome or things like that. Thirdly, let's talk about keyboard layouts. There's a few of them. QWERTY is by far the most popular Q-W-E-R-T-Y the keys in the front. But then there is also the Dvorak keyboard layout, and the Colemak keyboard layout. To be honest, the only one I've ever used is QWERTY. Basically every corporate keyboard in the world is a QWERTY layout. People say that you can go a bit faster using Dvorak, but I have never tried it. I've never needed to try it. I think the flexibility of just being able to pick up any computer and work with it with a QWERTY layout, far outweighs the fact that maybe you might be one or two words per minute faster if you use Dvorak. It would just be an absolute nightmare if you're using a friend's keyboard, or if you're in a co-working space, or if you're in an office, or if you're on your phone to switch everything to the Dvorak layout. Finally, when it comes to choosing a keyboard, related to mechanical versus membrane. But the quality of the sound. [NOISE] I find that when[NOISE] I hit keys, I often get into a bit of a rhythm. Usually I also have a song playing in my head or on through the speakers. [NOISE] I get into a bit of a rhythm while I'm typing and so it feels as if I'm playing my keyboard is as if it's a musical instrument. That's why, [NOISE] because I like the feeling of some these mechanical keyboards because they have more of that feedback, that sound, some feedback. But broadly, one thing I suggest to people is that generally if you hit the keys a little bit harder you probably going to type slightly faster. At least that's what I find. I find that what I'm trying to be quiet, i.e. if it's night time and I don't want to make noise, I'm typing a lot slower. Whereas if I'm typing with abandon and hitting the keys quite hard, [NOISE] I tend to type faster that way. Just some general thoughts on choosing the perfect keyboard. If you want my personal recommendation, it would be the Apple Magic Keyboard, even if you're on Windows, to be honest, it's just really good. The best keyboard I've ever used. But another really nice keyboard is the IQUNIX F96. It's very overpriced. A cheaper version would be the Keychron K2 will put links in the video description to all of those, and an affiliate link to this one which has five percent discount code. If you like, but yeah, Apple Magic Keyboard, all the way. Thanks for watching and see you in the next video. 12. How to Sit Properly for Comfort and Speed: All right, welcome back. Let's talk about how to sit properly for comfort and speed. Really this if our fingers are in the right position if our bodies are in the right position and we're appropriately relaxed and in the right posture, then that's going to translate to our typing speed. But more importantly, it's going to help our life generally when we don't have back pain and neck pain and shoulder pain. Now, this is something that I now take quite seriously. I've got this fancy chair from Herman Miller and then the guy who came to deliver it as like a Herman Miller posture specialist who set it up for me appropriately and told me what the appropriate posture was. I've got friends who are physiotherapists and work in the department who I also talk to about this stuff quite a lot. Basically, the key thing is, you want to stay in a sensible way. Broadly sitting straight with some level of back support, for example, sitting on a stool that doesn't have a back is generally a bad idea because you just end up going into this posture. The ideal posture is more, my personal trainer, he's a posture specialist as well. He calls it like imagine Leonardo da Vinci's Vitruvian Man, which is this. This is the position you want to have when you're sitting down at a desk, or generally in life, sort arms open in this fashion whereas when you go like this, your shoulder start to cave in and you start to adopt this posture which is absolutely not what we want. Instead, we want more of an open, this kind of posture, chest out, shoulders out, arms out. This is a very relaxed default anatomical position for humans. When we're sitting at a computer, we want our feet to be nice still on the ground, hopefully, you can see that, feet nicely on the ground. We'll do it without the arms of the chair right now. But you want a 90-degree angle here, more or less, and you want a 90-degree angle here, more or less, so that when you're sitting at your computer broadly you could draw a straight line here and here and it would be a 90-degree angle. At least this is how most posture specialists talk about this stuff. The way that I would sit at the computer, I sit quite for in, so that my resting position of my hands on the desk is basically at 90 degrees. The resting position of my hips and my knees is also at 90 degrees. We're trying to draw as many 90-degree angles as possible, so that's a good thing to do. If you have a chair that has arms, what the Herman Miller guy said, and I thought this was great because I never used to do this. If you want these arms to be just slightly above the desk. If this desk was higher, the arms would be below the desk and it would be a bit weird, but this is a very, very natural comfortable position that I can just be in forever and as long as I'm blogging, moving once an hour or whatever. I find that I don't get any back pain or shoulder pain. Whereas before I got this chair and before I started to think about my posture, I used to get a lot of these pains. Anyway, so this is my default typing position where I've got my 90-degree angle, feet and knees, and hips to the torso, and then down here. Now it's just very easy for me to type away and stuff. Also in terms of monitor position, people usually say that you want your monitor to be straight ahead but slightly down. In an ideal world, this monitor would probably be a bit higher than it actually is. I probably rest it on something like a book or something, it just hasn't been bulked, because it just looks bad. People say you should have a 15-degree angle between the top of your eyes and the center of the monitor or whatever. The problem with the laptop is that a laptop encourages us to be in this position. Because we're looking down and therefore our neck is strained and we don't want that. We want to be as much in that Vitruvian Man anatomical position as possible and that's the thing that you get when you have a monitor that's very easy to see by just moving your eyes. We don't want it so high that we're training our neck. We don't want it so low that we're craning our neck. We want our neck in a neutral position and our eyes to be generally pointed very slightly downwards. In reality, I should have this bulk very slightly more raised. But the main thing is that when you've got this posture and typing becomes comfortable and fun, then it just translates to typing speed, but it also translates to health and in generally longevity and lack of back pain in this stuff. You don't need a fancy-ass chair, you just need a good chair that has like back support so that you're not having to sit on the edge and sit completely straight. It's an energy-demanding posture to sit on the edge of a stool and sit bolt upright. That's usually what we think of when we think of good posture. But actually what a lot of these physiotherapists and posture people say is that your back wants to be comfortably supported by the chair. This is not good posture, but a relaxed position is. Really the cardinal rule of good posture at a computer is that you want to be changing your position every half an hour to one hour and moving around. This is a sit-stand desk, so I can turn it into a standing mode, and I often do that when I don't have a light and a camera pointing downwards or if I'm working somewhere else every hour. I will try my best to remind myself to get up, move around, go to the toilet, grab a coffee, grab a drink of water. There're some people that say that there is no perfect posture, the perfect posture is not the posture you were in previously. Really the thing that does move the needle for our posture and our health and stuff is moving regularly as opposed to having the perfect posture that you're sitting in all the time. Those are just some thoughts on how does it probably for comfort and speed. If you want a standing desk, I'll put an affiliate link to Fully. Standing desk from Fully that I've had for two years now, it's great. I swear by it, I'm going to buy multiple copies of this whenever I get an actual office. But that was how to type faster and more comfortably with posture and stuff. Thanks for watching and I'll see you in the next video. 13. Thanks for Watching: That brings us to the end of the class. Thank you very much for joining. I hope this class has given you some tips on how you can make your typing faster. People always ask me about this, so I buy it. It's one of my most popular YouTube videos on my channel, if not the most popular. Hopefully, this class will have been a bit more of an expansion. If you want to see more tips on how to type fast, I've got links to two YouTube videos that I've done about it, and if you're interested in tips to improve your productivity more generally, I have three classes here on Skillshare specifically themed around productivity. One is about productivity for creators, one is about productivity principles that I use to make my life more productive, and one is about the productivity equation incorporating the pilot, the plane, and the engineer mental model that I used to think about productivity as well. Hopefully, you'll find all this stuff helpful. If you want to keep up with your typing, remember to do some practice every now and then. It's fun. It's a bit of a game, and it's always a bit of a flex competition to have with your friends, and with friends on the Internet to see who can type the fastest. Thank you so much for watching. Hope you enjoyed this class, and do please leave a review if you found it useful. I'll see you hopefully in the next one. Bye bye.