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Last Updated: Friday, 18 November 2005, 15:43 GMT
Click Tips
Rob Freeman
By Rob Freeman
Click tip-ster

Rob Freeman, Click Online's very own Mr Fixit, troubleshoots your PC problems.

I am excited to say that we have been sent the most original question I have been asked in many years. It is from Asher Nasier, in Faisalabad:

Which keyboard layout should be adopted if the choices are Qwerty or Dvorak, and why?

I bet it comes as a surprise to many people that there is a choice.

Apart, I think, from A and M all the keys are in completely different places.

Qwerty, which gets its name from the first six keys, was actually designed over 100 years ago to - believe it or not - actually slow typists down.

On old mechanical lever typewriters, when you hit a key, a hammer stamped a letter on the page.

Hit the keys too fast and the levers would jam together.

Qwerty spacing positions the keys in such a way so that a lot of finger movement is required by the typist, to stop them typing fast, so that the levers wouldn't jam.

Dvorak is not actually new. It has been around for about 80 years.

It was developed by Dr August Dvorak and William Dealey, this time to increase typing speed by arranging the keys to make common English words easier to type.

Here are some of the benefits you might want to think about if you do choose Dvorak.

Existing users report it is faster to learn, enables faster typing, more accurate and more comfortable.

Many Dvorak users claim they suffer fewer strains in their hand because of the more ergonomic arrangement of the keys.

Dvorak was originally developed for English words, nowadays there are versions for Finnish, German and French.

Converting to Dvorak is surprisingly easy. Windows and Mac already support Dvorak keyboards. You just need a software settings change and some new labels to stick over your existing keys.

Amanda Hunt from Barcelona contacted us to ask:

I have just subscribed to ADSL broadband. However, I have two computers at home. One is still connected to the original modem for which I pay standard call charges. Can you tell me if there is a way of connecting the two computers to use the one ADSL line? I only use one computer at once.

Presumably the two computers are in different parts of your house, so it is not as simple as just unplugging the ADSL modem from the first computer and into the second.

It sounds like you need a different sort of modem.

The first and cheapest choice is an ADSL Ethernet router.

This lets several computers share one Internet connection, but each has to have an Ethernet card fitted, and wired up to the router.

If you do not want long cables lying around your house, you can go for a wireless ADSL router, which is a small box with an aerial.

With the wireless option, you will also need to buy a wi-fi card for each computer in your home.

Ask at your local electronics shop, or find a local computer magazine, which should list some mail order or online shops where you can look at prices.

If you have any questions or queries, please visit "Contact us" (link on the top right-hand side of this page) to get in touch.

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