Typing Day, celebrated on January 8 every year, is a significant day, not because it honors an important figure, a landmark historical event, or even the birth of a religious leader, but because it celebrates the ability to type and communicate with one another. Why is typing important, you may ask? Think about it. How did you get here? You went onto your phone, iPad, or computer and typed something into the browser. Now, you’re here, reading about typing. Groundbreaking, isn’t it? But in all seriousness, the incredible leaps we have made in communication and written skill is something to celebrate, which is why World Typing Day is such a great way to remember the past, honor the present, and marvel at the future.
History of Typing Day
If you ask someone what comes to mind when they hear the word ‘typing,’ you will get various responses. Some might immediately think of texting or sending an email. Others might be inspired to reminisce about the old days when significant businesses and agencies still employed typists before they became known as secretaries and took on more responsibilities than just typing. And those with more imagination might see the image that has been portrayed by many films and television shows of a writer perched on their desk chair typing up a novel on an old-school typewriter.
But first, back to where it all began. The first commercial typewriters were introduced in 1874 and did not become widely used in offices until the mid-1880s. Following this invention, typing as an art form and essential skill in a changing world became highly sought after by many traders, businesses, and publishers. It created millions of jobs across the globe and taught generations how to type, put together concise, informative written documents, and fostered a whole new mode of written communication.
Typing Day, which honors a written form of communication that ensures speed, accuracy, and efficiency, was established in Malaysia and is today celebrated around the globe. The Malaysian Speed Typing Contest, which took place in 2011, was the first event that cemented Typing Day as an essential addition to calendars worldwide.
Today, we don’t even think about it. We pull out our phones or log into our emails at our desktops, and perhaps some of us still dust off our typewriters. All to do one singular thing; type words to communicate a message, feeling, or narrative.
Typing Day timeline
The “Narmer Palette” is discovered in Egypt and contains some of the first forms of writing known to man.
Indus script, symbols associated with the Indus Valley Civilization in Pakistan and North India, is discovered and remains undeciphered to this day.
Noiseless, portable typewriters become best sellers and continue to be manufactured until the 1960s.
Typewriters become the standard fixture in offices.
The first-generation iPhone is invented and released to the market, forever changing how we type, particularly on our mobile phones.
World Typing Day is celebrated for the first time in Malaysia.
Typing Day FAQs
What is the world’s fastest typing record?
Stella Pajunas set the record for fastest typing speed ever at 216 words per minute (w.p.m.) in 1946, using an I.B.M. electric typewriter.
How can I practice typing?
Here are some easy steps to achieving a more well-rounded level of typing. Learn to touch type, a technique in which you use the same finger to type each key without looking at the keyboard. Or you can minimize your hand movements and put in less physical effort, which will also help your posture. Finally, practice typing for accuracy and not speed.
Why is it QWERTY and not ABCD?
The letter keys on the first computer were all in alphabetical order. The problem was that if you pressed two keys simultaneously, the levers would jam. Jams were most likely when two keys on the keyboard were close together. Rearranging the letters may help to reduce jams.
Typing Day Activities
Write a blog or a post
A tried and tested way to celebrate World Typing Day is to warm up those fingers, pick a platform, either a blog on your website, a Facebook post, or a longer captioned Instagram post, and finally pick a topic. Next, you’re going to type it up, expressing yourself in the best way possible through written communication. What makes this so special is that even though you do this every day, on World Typing Day, you’re making a conscious effort to create something, using only two things — your mind and a keyboard.
Learn to type in a new language
Fair enough, learning a new language seems a little drastic just to celebrate a particular day, so we’ll allow some words from a foreign language for this one. Every day you type in your mother tongue or your second language, but how often do you get to express yourself in the written word in a different language? Think of a sentence or a short paragraph, like this one, and look up the translation, teaching yourself how it’s done. How many people can say they just chose to type something in a foreign language?
Take part in a speed typing contest
Throw it back to 2011 at the first-ever World Typing Day celebrations and enter yourself into a speed typing contest. Hey, we believe in you — just put in some practice. Do some warm-up texting, write a couple of emails, and learn the sequence of the letters on your chosen keyboard, you should be able to nail this. If all else fails, type them an email saying you have decided to pull out of the competition — then, at least you’re still typing something!
5 Strange Facts About Computer Keyboards
The spacebar is the most commonly used key
When you hit the spacebar, 600,000 other people are doing the same thing simultaneously.
Keyboards are gross
Scientists believe that keyboards could contain more germs than a toilet seat.
Ctrl Alt Del
The Ctrl Alt Del combo to reboot your P.C. was chosen because holding this key combination with only one hand on the I.B.M. P.C. 5150 keyboard was impossible.
Japanese keyboards have the smallest spacebar
To some, the spacebar is the longest key on their keyboard, but in Japan, it is much shorter than in any other place on Earth because Japanese keyboards require switching between Latin/Roman letters, and more space is required for these additional keys.
Dressing up your keyboard is the fashion
An ongoing trend, especially among youngsters, is decorating laptop keyboards with vinyl stickers with trendy colors or patterns.
Why We Love Typing Day
It allows us to express ourselves
We get to express our thoughts and feelings through vocabulary and sentence structure, but we would not be able to do so without the relevant tools. Yes, writing on paper with a pen can be pretty expressive and emotive. Still, typing eliminates any unnecessary faults and unwanted narrative distractions and keeps your message more concise as you are spending time thinking about what key comes next on your keyboard. This is just one of the reasons we love celebrating World Typing Day.
It gets the job done quicker
A lot can be said for efficiency, especially regarding business, deadlines, and needing to communicate in a hurry. That’s why offices all got typewriters and typists in the early 80s and why writers stopped using pen and paper. And we can’t imagine our lives without the ability to type, which is why we jump at the opportunity to honor that function and asset.
It helps with spelling and grammar
If you write daily, or you’re just someone who chooses to express themselves in the best and most accurate way when texting, then chances are you have installed some sort of spell checker on your phone and your personal computer. We all thought keyboards were revolutionary, which they are, but can you imagine a world in which we need to type up a quick email, and we need to reference a hard copy dictionary to spell check? No thanks! We couldn’t be happier that keyboards now come with grammar and spell-check. You just need to know which one to use.
Typing Day dates