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October 06, 2021


My 1942 U. S. Navy touch-typing chart shows finger choice for the "6" key (only!) as "optional" for left or right index finger. You chose one. The keyboard maker chose the other.

I used the ergonomic keyboard for several years, but it is such a behemoth that using it on a keyboard tray was a pain. It didn't have a built in mouse, but I'm not sure wired keyboards had that capability (that's how long ago it was). When I went to wireless mouse/keyboard I decided on a more transitionally shaped unit.

I don't remember how I struck numbers on a typewriter, but I'm sure I never had to use numbers much and I am pretty darn sure I had to look to strike the numbers/symbols. Since using computers, and going to entering numbers frequently, I have always used the number pad to the right. Even when using a work computer that doesn't have that number pad, I either use a separate full size keyboard or plugged in a separate number pad. For my personal laptops, there have always been two criteria for buying; at least a 17" screen and a number pad.

At least I come by my non-feeling fingers honestly. I can't feel the bumps on the positioning keys, so sometimes end up typing gibberish because my finger positioning is off.

For clarity, Bogie, the mouse that was included is separate from the keyboard. I don't "do" the touchpads because the stray capacitances of my lazy hands (drooping too close to the pad) give me garbled, unintended gibberish. When I was using laptops, I taped a piece of card stock over the pad to prevent such gibberish.

I blame my life-long habit of doing manual labor (mostly) without gloves and on vigorous hand-washing; but, I don't think that's the whole (if any of the) story since, as early as 1959, when finger-printed for my first secret clearance, they had a devil of a time getting good enough fingerprints off of my hands. The last time FEMA tried to fingerprint me (2011?), they pretty much gave up. OTOH: Fingerprinting is probably a red herring in a discussion of fingertip sensitivity - lol.

Good observation that many, if not most of us, use numeric keys more on a computer keyboard than ever we did on a typewriter.

My MA carry permit and working for the Commerce Department in 2010 required fingerprints - mine were difficult also. I watched people breeze thru the process. Then my turn came and it was all, "nope, nope, nope, nope, nope, I think that is good enough".

We will need to check with your dad and Dudette to see what their experiences have been. As I recall, you and Dudette made pretty good footprints on your hospital certificates of birth ; )

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