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GNU Typist (also called gtypist) is
a universal typing tutor. You can learn correct typing and improve
your skills by practising its exercises on a regular basis. Its main
- It is free software released under
the GNU General Public
License. In addition, it is an official program of
the GNU project.
- It comes with several typing tutorials: in Czech, English (Qwerty,
Dvorak and Colemak keyboards), Russian and Spanish, as well as simpler
exercises in German, French and Norwegian.
- It interprets a simple and intuitive scripting language that
describes typing tutorials. You can easily modify existing tutorials
or create new ones according to your needs.
- It supports internationalization and already has an interface in
Czech, English, Finnish, French, German and Spanish.
- Users can navigate through lessons through an easy to use arrow
key based menu interface. 'vi' up, down, left and right keys can be
- Thanks to its execution in text mode with the curses library, it
can be compiled and used on several operating systems, in particular
on GNU/Linux and GNU/HURD, on several variants of Unix, as well as on
Windows with the PDCurses library and MinGW.
The aim of this Free Software project is to provide valuable help to
individuals and schools all over the world in learning or teaching how
Free Software can be a valuable
resource in education. Not only can it be technically or pedagogically
superior to proprietary alternatives, but it can also promote the
values of the GNU project in the schools:
See the GNU and Education page
for more details about Free Software for Education.
As project maintainers, our main goal is to
protect users' freedom and encourage their cooperation, by:
- Encouraging users and teachers to share their needs and bring
- Keeping the tool open and easily extensible. Our goal is to empower anyone,
in particular amongst typing teachers, to satisfy one's needs by improving
lessons or writing new ones, as well as by making the tool work in one's own
- Making the tool universal, attractive and easy to use, so that as many
people as possible benefit from contributed work and knowledge. This should
also strengthen the user community and attract new contributors.
To see a full list of the current plans we have to improve GNU Typist,
you can read the latest TODO
here. In a nutshell, our major long-term plans include:
- Porting the interface to GTK make it easier to use and navigate
- Displaying the keyboard layout and indicating which finger is
supposed to be used while typing.
The latest stable release of GNU Typist is version 2.9.5, released in August 2014.
GNU Typist can be found on
(via HTTP) and
(via FTP). It can also be found on one
of our FTP mirrors; please use a mirror
For Windows users, pre-compiled binaries are available. These
currently may have a problem with multi-byte input which will be
addressed in the next release. The binaries are available in .7z
format and can be found in the w32_binaries folder.
GNU Typist documentation can be found at
You may also find more information about GNU Typist by running
info gtypist, man gtypist, or looking in the
documentation directory for gtypist on your system (which might
be /usr/share/doc/gtypist/ or something similar).
The discussion list for GNU Typist is
and is used to discuss all aspects of GNU Typist, including support
questions, bug reports, suggestions, patches, and new lessons.
Announcements about GNU Typist and most other GNU software are made on
To subscribe to these or any GNU mailing lists, please send an empty
mail with a Subject: header line of just "subscribe" to the relevant
-request list. For example, to subscribe yourself to GNU announcement
list, you would send mail
with no body and a Subject: header line of just "subscribe". Or you
list web interface.
Request an Enhancement
If you would like any new feature to be included in future versions of
GNU Typist, please send a request to
Please remember that development of GNU Typist is a volunteer effort,
and you can also contribute to its development. For information about
contributing to the GNU Project, please read How to
If you think you have found a bug in GNU Typist, then please send as
complete a report as possible to
You can contribute to GNU Typist by sending bug reports, suggestions,
patches and new lessons
You can also directly access the development versions of documentation
and source files in
repository. In particular, here are direct links to the latest
versions of our
(answers to Brave GNU World questions) files
to the firstname.lastname@example.org mailing list.
You can contribute a new tutorial in 2 ways:
Simply type the tutorial, containing instructions and exercises, in a
plain text file (or in another open and standard format, such as
HTML). You may reuse some instructions available in existing
tutorials, in the
lessons/ directory in the GNU Typist sources.
Another contributor will take care of converting your tutorial to the
GNU Typist format.
- You can also directly write your tutorial in the GNU Typist
format. It is a simple scripting language which is described in the
Once your lesson file is complete, you can test it by simply typing
(if you named it
You can then send it to us as described above.
Instructions for writing interface messages in new languages will be
There are other free typing tutors, most of them released under the GNU General
Public License. They're worth trying too!
is a simple ncurses-based typing tutor for those trying to get
fluent with the Dvorak keyboard layout.
DvorakNG is a Dvorak typing tutor. It's heavily based on
Dvorak7min, but adds many improvements like a progress information
gcompris is a set of
educational games designed for small children, including typing
Griffin is an effort to
write a free typing tutor for as many Unices as possible (BSD License).
gtyping is a GTK+/GNOME
typing program. It provides character typing on a GUI keyboard, a
typing tutor that uses a text file, and a simple typing game.
is a small java program useful for teaching small children about
type faster and more accurately. Many files are included for the
user to practice on - but, you may also use any text that can be
copied and pasted into the main screen.
called Typist) is a cousin of GNU Typist written in Java. It has a
graphical user interface and display error statistics, showing the
user what (s)he needs to improve. It has been developed by Simon
Baldwin, one of the original authors of the famous Typist program,
the ancestor of GNU Typist.
KTouch is another
program for learning to touch type. KTouch provides you with text
to train on, and adjust to different levels, depending on how good
you are. It can display which key to press next, and the correct
finger to use.
Bakon is a typing tutor game written in C++ with STL and
Curses. Save Pig from the supermarket shelves while learning to
type to a professional standard! It Uses the Fortune database for
some of it's exercises. Contains material that may offend!
is another graphical typing tutor. At the moment, it is available
in two languages (German and English) and for two key-maps
(PC-German and PC-English).
Tux Typing is a
graphical, educational typing tutorial game starring Tux, the
is a curses-based typing practice/tutoring program. It has
rudimentary weighting on letters for which you are more prone to
failure, and it features a mode where it will only prompt for
characters from either the left or right side (conforming to
generic Dvorak layouts, as well as QWERTY).
Typespeed is a
game to test your typing speed, and compare it with your friends'.
is designed for exercising typing speed and typing accuracy, by
providing an environment to type in a copy of an original text
within a specific time period. It also has the ability to store
the results of such an exercise for exam purposes.
GNU Typist is currently being maintained by Tim Marston.