like how we had typing practice software for english, are there apps, tools, or sites to practice typing in chinese? I kind of get the idea of 速成, but I want actually practice to solidify the muscle memory.
What kind of typing are you trying to learn?
There are many ways of input in Chinese.
Pinyin, Zhuyin, Handwriting, and more (like radical-based typing).
Personally I use pinyin everyday, chatting with my friends. I type faster than any of my local friends, mostly because pinyin is using an english keyboard layout. Taiwanese use zhuyin which is a different keyboard layout, most people don't know the place of the characters by heart so they waste time looking at characters.
If you want to learn handwriting, i guess "practice makes perfect". I use a lot of handwriting to look up words in Pleco. I'm not fast though.
Just last week, I demonstrated to a secretary how fast the pinyin input was on a PC. She was using one of the older methods that takes a long time to learn and master, and barely Chinese literate me just flew through the words. Some of them were accurate too!
Windows pinyin is predictive and probability based, so it often gets it right even before you've finished typing in the characters and often requires fewer keystrokes and searching, e.g. 我是加拿大人 becomes 15 keystrokes
or even better, you can just input the first character of every character (windows pinyin input only)
wsjndr (6 characters)
Mind you, I've only done this with HSK lv 3 and 4 sentences, so real world writing may not work as well.
Sorry for the hijack semidevil. I just wanted to rant about how much I enjoy the pinyin input
I totally agree with @pdwalker and I've been praising pinyin for a while.
This said, there are other predictive chinese input, I know that at least the Zhuyin input also has predictive input. By default, Zhuyin needs you to type the different syllables + the tone of the character, but most keyboards have added a predictive input for a while, so that it is now the same as Pinyin in its capabilities.
The huge difference is that most people didn't bother to learn by heart the position of the Zhuyin keys, so if you are a foreigner with good QWERTY keyboard typing skills and using pinyin, you will most likely beat anyone using Zhuyin.
The other input methods that I know don't have predictive input. I have friends actually drawing each character with the finger. It's slower to type, but at the same time, they claim that it is a great practice to actually draw the characters. They don't focus on speed.
I have friends actually drawing each character with the finger. It's slower to type, but at the same time, they claim that it is a great practice to actually draw the characters. They don't focus on speed.
iOS devices also have a predictive Chinese Handwriting input “keyboard”. It looks and works similarly to the Pleco Handwriting. I map both the handwriting and Pinyin keyboards (and along with English US and Emoji) can switch between the 4 keyboards seamlessly.