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The Typing Class Dan Blaine DBLIVIT blaine@eucom.mil Of all the classes I took at Curtis, typing was the one that I've gotten the most use out of. I only took it to get a few credits closer to graduation...couldn't wait to get out of there!

There were no electric typewriters in our classes. They were all big, ugly industrial strength Royals, Smith-Coronas and Underwoods. It seems like most of us preferred the Royals...the Smith-Coronas were hard to set up and the Underwoods needed gorilla strength fingers to strike a key...especially if you were typing a three part carbon.

We didn't have any correction fluid, paper or ribbons. We had a round ink eraser with a little brush attached to it. Of course, one wasn't supposed to make any mistakes...the object was to type at least 40 wpm error free. (Good luck!). If you were lucky enough to see your mistake before you removed your copy from the machine, you could usually erase it well enough (if you didn't rub a hole in the paper) and strike over it to have it "pass". Woe if you had already removed your copy from the machine and then had to re-insert it to typeover your erased mistake...it was impossible to align the paper so that your keystroke would fall exactly in the right spot. The new character would either be too high/ low or be too close/far from its' leading and trailing neighbors.

So, you usually would have to type the whole !@#$%^&* blasted thing over. Which brings to memory the !@#$%^&*! characters. What a pain they were! I think the approved method was to hold down the shift key with your pinky then execute the character with the applicable finger. Of course, all of this without peeking...this was supposed to be "touch typing".

It's too bad most of us who took typing didn't have latent musical talents...With our dexterious fingers we could have been as good as Segovia on the classical guitar!



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