One of the big advantages of typing in the Dvorak layout is the comfort that comes with it. It is estimated that you spend nearly 70% of your time typing on the home row, with only 30% of your time stretching for letters off of the home row. If that’s the case, then I should be able to type a great deal of words on the home row itself. Let’s see if that’s the case. Counting the number of words that I have on my Debian system, I get the following:
aaron@kratos:~$ wc -l /usr/share/dict/words 98569
Out of those 98,569 words, how many can be typed with the home row on QWERTY? I need to search through that file using regular expressions. For that, I have the powerful grep and egrep utilities. I am using the egrep tool, passing -c to keep a count for me, and -i to ignore case sensitivity. Let’s take a look:
aaron@kratos:~$ egrep -ci ^[asdfghjkl\;\']+$ /usr/share/dict/words 233
Out of 98-thousand words, I can only type 233 using just the home row on QWERTY?!? That blows! Let’s see how that would compare to the Dvorak layout:
aaron@kratos:~$ egrep -ci ^[aoeuidhtns-]+$ /usr/share/dict/words 1968
That’s a lot better! Nearly 10x the amount of words are available typing on just the home row using Dvorak than with QWERTY! I can already see how much more enjoyable my typing class in school would have been.