About

neo lefty
Newly-arrived;
novice
left-handed;
right-brained;
creative

Bill Baker

I’ve always been a right-handed, left-brain kind of person — math-y, logical, you know — and frankly, that gets old eventually. I think left-handedness is pretty cool, and I even married someone who is
left-handed
.

So one day in 1995 or thereabouts, after playing some strategy game on a friend’s computer all weekend (he was out of town), my right shoulder started hurting, apparently from excessive mousing. I’ve heard that’s pretty common. The problem is, it turned chronic — if I spent very long at a computer (and I was studying Computer Science in college at the time), the pain would come back.

Years passed. I got a job programming. And another one. And yet another one after that. My right shoulder often ached from too much mousing.

So one day, I took the plunge. It was inevitable.

I moved my mouse to the left side of my keyboard.

And I started using my left hand to mouse. Whoa. It was quite an experience.

You know that little bridge
between your brain’s hemispheres? It carries most of the signals between the
href=”https://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/split.html”>two hemispheres
. Well, according to some brain-imaging-and-dissection research, that bridge is larger in women than in men. And I could suddenly tell that I was bandwidth-challenged. On top of just not being very coordinated, my left hand (and right hemisphere) had apparently been taking it easy and had not really been paying attention to what my left hemisphere, busy programming, had been doing. Which is weird because I had been typing just fine with my left hand. It took conscious effort to target things and click on them, and it was more than just learning a new mechanical skill. It felt like I was exercising my corpus callosum (that brain bridge thingy), which must have grown weak with disuse.

I’m pretty sure the exercise has been good for my intellectual balance. I hasn’t made me left-handed or particularly artsy-creative, but hopefully it has helped bring those qualities a little closer to the surface. And my shoulder doesn’t hurt anymore.

Besides, the domain (neolefty.com/org) was available.

One Response to About

  1. Thanks for hosting ditaa.org! But there’s a problem with the demo textarea on http://ditaa.org/ditaa/ with Chrome and Safari (and possibly all webkit browsers): those browsers default to a variable-width font face for textareas! The fix should be simple enough, though. Just dropping “font-family: monospace;” at the end of the style attribute of the textarea should do the trick.

    Thanks again!

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