We have to type for just about everything now, from school reports and homework to research and job applications to the regular nine-to-five job; we have to type at least once in a while. When we do, we can either speed through the words like we’re a cyborg meant for this one specific task, or we “chicken peck” at the keyboard, hoping to type at least on sentence before the minute ends. For those that are interested in becoming a cyborg (but not really), here are a few tips on how to improve your typing speed:

Keep your eyes on the screen.

This is actually called “touch typing,” because your eyes are never (or rarely) on your fingers. This is really the easiest way to build your typing speed, because your fingers and brain memorize the placement of the keys and the most effective pattern for a quick typing speed. It’s not even about not looking, just memorization.

Use a keyboard that’s right for you.

Mechanical keyboards (that’s keyboards with the big buttons that you actually press down on, rather than the sleek, flat keyboards that you see on laptops. While these tend to have faster response times, they won’t be much of a benefit unless you are moderately proficient in touch typing.

Listen to the right music.

If you’re still trying to learn, your focus level is amplified, and if you’re listening to music with lyrics mixed with a distracting melody, then you may find yourself typing out the words that they say. Skilled typists can balance the two, since they’ve mastered their touch typing and increased their speed, but it’s an easy mistake that happens when you really get into the song.

Don’t worry about your mistakes.

Especially when your brain thinks faster than you type — and it will, most of the time — you will make mistakes. Some people find it more helpful to stop what their doing, backtrack, and re-type the word or words they messed up on. Other people see better results when they barrel forward, forgetting their mistakes until the piece of writing is finished, and they can go back and fix the mistakes one by one. It’s something to consider trying both ways, to find the best fit.

Typing doesn’t have to be a chore; practice makes perfect, so don’t worry if you feel like you can’t get it right away. Sometimes professional typists still look at their keyboard!

Computers are such an important part of our lives; in fact, our very lives tend to depend on these miraculous machines. We use them for work as well as pleasure, shopping, bills, research, and basically everything in between. So it’s no wonder that it’s important to treat your computer like a best friend – because, let’s face it, it essentially is. Here are a few tips on how to treat your computer right!

Clean it regularly.

This means both internally and externally; dust of your keyboard (they have pressurized air that can be used to blow out the hard to reach places, so you don’t need to do much), and clean your screen with the appropriate cleaning products (a dry microfiber cloth works best, but there are some screen cleaning solutions that work great for a really dirty screen). Cleaning internally is a little less work on your part; just make sure you run your computer cleaning software often to rid the hard drive of any unneeded files and potential viruses and malware.

Buy it things!

Your computer might not be able to say “thank you,” but buying it little things can either increase its functionality or just the appearance. You could buy a new anti-virus program or maybe a big backup for your extra big files. Maybe you want a cool keyboard cover, or a cover and carrying case (if you have a laptop). When we say “treat it like your BFF,” we mean it!

Be gentle with it.

If you really want to run a specific program or game, but there is just barely enough room on your hard drive, then rather than forcing your CPU to run harder and faster than it needs to, just give it some more space. Even though it’s a machine, it still needs room to breathe. If you have a laptop, don’t toss it around without a protective carrier, and try to treat it like a bag full of eggs to avoid accidentally dropping it and watching your entire life shatter in front of you.

It’s not hard to treat your machine like a person – minus talking to it like you would a friend, even though there are some people that actually do that. Just remember to be gentle, buy it everything it could possible need, and keep it clean. We would do that for a friend, right? Why not our own machines?

 

There are a million and one ways to study, and there seem to be more ways being invented every other day. It’s great, and we’re in no way complaining, but sometimes it can be just a little too much. Sometimes, it’s just easier to go back to the roots and kick it with the basics. What are we even talking about? Here are some throwback studying methods that still work!

Sticky notes…

…aren’t just for hectic office employees, they’re probably one of the greatest inventions ever to have been birthed into this world. Obviously, they work just like taking regular notes in a notebook, but sticky notes are compact, and can be placed next to the source material for a quick reference pull.

Colored sticky tabs.

Just like sticky notes, these are for quick lookups. While you can’t write more than a word or two on them, they can be color-coded to whatever subject or topic you’re working on and can jog your memory when you see it.

Flash cards…

…help with memorization and image-based memory. This is best for whenever you know something is going to be on a test, and works best with basic concepts, rather than lots of details, because you’re memorizing it.

Hard copies are your friends.

There’s just something about getting the textbook and doing your studying, rather than reading the same thing on a screen. While we’re not entirely sure why, you require more repetition when reading from a computer or tablet, than you would with a book.

Highlighters are a god’s gift to mankind.

Because it’s simple and yet extremely effective. On a flat piece of paper, your eyes are drawn to the pop of color and you know it’s important to remember. Something as simple and easy as color has proven to be extremely effective for studying and retaining information.

Associations are also a huge help when it comes to complex answers.

While this won’t work for everyone, we know it does, indeed, work. Acronyms are a great way to remember multiple answers, or a list of things. Or, if your mind can work the crazy halls of association, then something a little crazier may work. You can use colors, animals, plants, whatever makes it easier for you!

There are tons of ways to study, but these are some of the simpler, less technology-driven ways that have been used since school required people to study! What other great studying tricks do you have? Let us know in the comments!

One of the most hated questions for a student is: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Well, truth be told, they don’t know! Some people don’t find their callings until they are twenty-five, thirty-five — some people don’t even enter their ideal career until they’re in their fifties! There’s nothing wrong with that, either; live your best life, even if it takes longer than what should be “average.” We’re here to tell you that your skills, no matter what they are, can take you places.

Arts and Design, especially with digital and graphic design, could utilize your programming skills to help you create the best art you can. Not only will the results of learning it (that is, understanding coding languages and knowledge of development software), but also the personality skills you pick up as well, such as patience and an attention to detail.

Information Technology (IT), while not technically a programming job, heavily relies on the skills you gather from programming. Individuals within this industry need to have a knowledge of coding languages such as C++ and Adobe, but they also need to understand web development, which is a big part of the programming world.

Business Analysts use computer programming skills to help solve business-related problems through understanding and modification. It’s a good combination of IT work and business-centered focus.

Technical Writers are oftentimes employed by science and engineering companies to write clear and concise instructions on different programs and products both in written word and in visual or audio presentations. Technical writers will find their work comes easier if they already know how to use designing software, which a programming student would learn long before they turn in the application!

Having coding skills can benefit you in many careers beyond simply programming alone — explore what the world has to offer!