Learn Korean Hangul Touch Typing (Part 1): Installing the FREE Program

Touch Typing: typing without using the sense of sight to find the keys.

typing-keyboard

This is the 21st century and technology dominates almost everything we do. And from smart phones to computers to tablets, typing is a daily activity.

Likely you’ve already studied “touch typing” in English, but if you’re studying Korean, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to have the same kind of computer dexterity in Hangul that you already enjoy with the English keyboard? Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to keep a typed journal of what you’re learning in Korean? Or just impress friends and family back home with your blog posts or status updates that include Korean?

I personally think it’s a big pain in the butt to continually look at the keyboard to try to find the right Hangul letters when typing in Korean. My English typing speed is around 70-80 words per minute, but my Korean typing speed is lagging around 20 or less (and that’s while looking at the keyboard). So, recently, in an effort to increase my Korean language ability while at the same time increasing my Korean typing speed, I downloaded a FREE Korean typing programand you can too! This blog post will show you how to install:

Hancom’s Typing Practice Program (한컴 타자연습).

Hancom Typing Homepage

Task #1: Download the Program

Caution: This program will ONLY work on a Windows computer (thank you Korea). Sorry Mac and Linux users – you’ll have to dual boot, or use a Windows machine.

Head over to Hancom’s Typing Practice homepage (pictured above) to download the program. (The download is that big purple button in the center of the page):

download
The full download is 150 MB.

Task #2: Install the Program

Caution: This program will only install on a KOREAN operating system. (But I have a method – described below – to trick the program into thinking you have a Korean operating system. Get ready to play with regedit.)

only-korean

If you get a window that looks like the one above, don’t worry about it. We’ll just trick your OS to think it’s in Korean and install the program anyway.

No Korean OS? No problem. Trick it to install it.

When a program installs, it takes a look at your registry settings to see what language the OS is in. This can be really useful for some programs like Google Chrome, or Audacity, which will install into the language that your OS is, and not necessarily into a different language not of your choosing. Or course, this can also prove to be a problem when you’re installing a program onto a computer that’s NOT in your native or chosen language.

But… there is a way to trick a program into thinking its installing onto a different language OS. The key is in the registry settings.

Regedit

Open your Windows XP Start Menu and click on “Run…” (in Windows 7, just type “regedit” into the Search bar).

start-menu-run

regedit

In the next window, type “regedit” and hit ENTER:

regedit

When your registry opens, navigate over to “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/ControlSet001/Control/NIs/Language”

regedit-change

Scroll to the bottom of the “Language” registry keys and you should notice 2 keys that say “Default” and “InstallLanguage.”

You’ll need to double-click both keys and change the values to 0412 (Korean). (If it’s 0409, that’s for “US English”)

Close the window, and restart your computer to “reset” it into Korean.

(Don’t worry if you see some changes to your Start Menu or other icons after the restart, you can always change your registry keys back to the original language once we get the Typing program installed).

Install the Program

Now that your computer is “set” to Korean, you should have no problems installing the program. Double-click it and go through the installation screens until it’s complete.

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And if you want to, now that you’ve installed the program, feel free to reverse your registry key adjustments back to their defaults. This way, if any new Windows updates come down the pipeline, you’ll get them in the right language.

When you take a look at your desktop, a new icon appears:

hancom-program-icon

Task #3: Launch the Program!

loginAfter launching the program, you’ll see this window. From here, you really have three choices:

  1. Start Typing anonymously:
    alone
    (This is the gray button on the left of the screen).
  2. “Join” the service to create a username to record your progress:
    join
    (The green button on the right of the screen).
  3. Login if you’ve already joined the service.

Joining the service, logging in, and using the program are really outside the scope of this blog entry. So for more information about these three things, please see the follow-up post to this one.