I agree with Peter about the importance of typing skills. I learned to type in High School. I took a semester of typing where we had half manual typewriters and half IBM Selectrics. We switched halfway through the semester so that we could get experience with both. Although I haven’t used an actual typewriter in years (I think since I was in the Military Police and had to use them to type reports on “carbon copy” style multiple copy forms) the skills have served me well in using computers.
I would highly recommend learning to “touch type” if you have any need or desire to ever type anything on a computer…it will increase your productivity immensely. I can’t recommend this free online tutor personally because I’ve never used it, but Peter recommends it and I don’t see why it wouldn’t be effective…it’s not rocket science; the only thing you’re doing is learning where to place your hands and then practice, practice, practice until you don’t have to think about where the keys are any more. You just hit them by reflex. It’s all about muscle memory.
I’m not nearly as quick as Peter (see my WPM test results below) but I still type faster than I can hand-write anything…and often seemingly faster than I can think; and, as an added bonus: when I type rather than hand writing, the recipient can actually read the result, which is sometimes desirable.
In any case, without Further Ado: