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Daily Mac App: Typingstats

Typing- whether it's writing a blog post or responding to an email, almost everyone with a computer has to type. So why not make it fun? One way to liven up your typing experience is to use the small utility Typingstats.

Typingstats is an OS X app that sits in your menu bar and keeps track of your keystrokes. It counts them for you and calculates your words per minute while you type. If you don't like words per minute, you can choose words per second, keystrokes per second, or keystrokes per minute.

It's system-wide, so it tracks your typing in your web browser, email client and text editor. The app keeps a history of your keystrokes and produces a nice graph that shows your typing count each day. As expected, my graph is steady during the week and drops off during the weekend.

Besides keystroke count and words per minute, the app also tracks which key you press most often. For me, it's the spacebar and sometimes the letter "a". You can keep your keystroke count to yourself or upload it to an online leaderboard where you can compete to become the typing king (or queen). Uploading does require you to sign up for an online Typingstats account.

The app isn't 100% accurate. It only counts keystrokes and not words. The app assumes each word is five characters, so your word per minute count is an approximation. Typingstats also counts every keystroke, including command, option and control, so a simple copy and paste can be calculated as a word. For me, a close approximation is good enough. I enjoy watching the keystroke count go up each day and the wpm count fluctuate as I type.

Typingstats is a fun utility for people who make their living typing or are just interested in knowing how much they type. If you're concerned about privacy (the app does track your keystrokes), you can open the app only when you're typing information that's not sensitive. The app is available in the Mac App Store for 99-cents.

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