I have been on this forum for some time, and more often than not the "Stammtisch" recommend slowing down to ridiculously low speeds. I've read 11 wpm, 9 wpm and even 3 wpm.
Slow speeds are an alternative to following the 90% of disillusioned ex hopefuls who give up instead due to lack of any progress after lesson 11.
No one suggests it as a starting strategy.
I accidentally (unconsciously) bumped into this:
Summarizing and paraphrasing, the author suggests:
1) skipping the key and going straight to keyboard+keyer;
Up to you.
Learning morse is generally taken as meaning learning to read morse.
Some people can't use a keyer . . . some people don't want to . . . you choose
2) a code reader...
Up to you, if you can find one that works, or a source of good enough code.
Not much good for learning head decode up front though.
Did you read this bit in your reference ?
The reason you first want to learn to copy in your head only is because when you get to speeds around 50 to 55 wpm, you have to teach your brain literally to change it's method of interpreting code.(And it takes a while to do this!) Below about 50 wpm, you are still hearing a dot and a dash to form a word. When you are copying at 60 wpm and higher, you do not consciously hear a dot and a dash, you literally hear a word. At that time too, you begin to have to be in, what I call, the 'flow of the conversation', just like you are when your talking on your telephone. If you send me code groups at 70 wpm, I could not copy most of them, but if you and I are in a converation at 70 wpm or higher, THEN I can copy pretty solid.
To increase your copy speed, I recommend a code reader...and don't be shocked by that! The reason I recommend a code reader is because the process of learning to copy from about 50 to 60 wpm is where you literally have to teach your brain to copy code in a different way. The problem at these speeds is if you miss a word, your brain automatically freezes and tries to 'guess' at what that one missed word is. While the brain is trying to decide what that one word is, many more words go flying by, and you actually get very confused and lose track of what is being sent to you. When you start using a code reader, a first you're going to just read the screen, but subconsciously the brain is associating the dots and dashes with what your reading on the screen. The more you do this, you will find that the less you read the screen, but only glance at it when you miss that one word! This gets you over that 'brain freeze' that is caused by missig just one word! Once you get to copying around 60 wpm, when you DO miss that one word, your brain realizes it, but then just continues to copy, ignoring or filling in that one missed word.
Don't worry about a code reader being a crutch, simply because when you get to where you can copy around 60 wpm, you will find that you can then copy code better than a code reader! A code reader is not very good at handling high speed code in the presence of normal band noise of your receiver. About 60 to 70 wpm and they are not capable to keep up anymore because of noise crashes, but your brain can easily filter out the noise. A code reader is an 'aid' to helping one learn to copy code faster, it is NOT a crutc
Not really - someone's fave way of speeding up ( After getting to 55/55 ) Up to them . . .
I like controversial opinions.
Well that's not one.
I don't actually have a code reader, but I have a simple command line Linux programme called "morse" that can generate sample QSOs, generate the audio and display it on the screen at the same time.
I am going to try that, in addition to my standard routine (LCWO code groups, words, callsigns, + the offline QRQ by our Fabian Kurz) and report back in a couple of months if anybody is interested.
We are interested in anyone who can be bothered to post . . .