It’s rarer now, but once in a while I still come across a journalist or blogger agonizingly hunting-and-pecking a story to completion — in a world where a low WPM means starvation (or at least, a diet of Ramen noodles).
It makes me smile, because I used to be like that. I’m much faster now, thanks to an abundance of repetition. But I’m still no maestro — so I’ve employed a secret weapon to help fashion me into a typing cyborg: The free Typist Mac app. Although I suppose it isn’t much of a secret since I’ve blabbed this to practically the entire Internet.
One of the 200 new features touted by Apple for OS X Mountain Lion is a boon to those of us who have to type the same text string or phrase over and over, including email addresses, phone numbers, addresses, and the like. It’s also a great way for people with motor disabilities to be able to type at a much faster rate than otherwise. Here’s how to set it up.
Launchpad tries to bring an iOS-style app interace to OS X. Whether you like it or not, it’s here to stay. Introduced in OS X Lion, Launchpad arranges the apps you have installed on your Mac in a grid array, much like the apps are arranged on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Of course, your Mac has a much bigger screen than these iOS devices (hopefully), so there’s even more of a need to filter out the apps you don’t want so that you can find the apps you do want to find.
In iOS, as you get more and more apps installed on your device, you’re gonna end up swiping to the right of the home screen at some point and typing the name of an app into the Search field there. Prior to Mountain Lion, there was no way to do this in OS X. Now, however, there is, and I sincerely hope they bring this concept back to enrich iOS itself.
The Touchfire is a weird little gadget, a silicone skin which covers your iPad’s touchscreen keyboard with a floppy membrane that partially simulates a real, physical keyboard. Launched over a year on Kickstarter, the Touchfire finally goes on sale today. I have been testing one out for the past couple of weeks. Is it worth the $50 asking price? Well, that depends.
I love iPad 2 accessories that follow the guiding principles of the gadget they were built for. I mean, c’mon — d’you really want to lug around a case the size of a large waffle skillet just to have some keys to type on? Of course not.
Adonit’s humble origins as a Kickstarter project hasn’t stopped the outfit from taking the iPad-accessory world by storm. Adonit’s Jot styli were radical standouts in our stylus shootout a few weeks back, and their version of an iPad 2 keyboard case, the Adonit Writer for iPad 2 ($100), sparked similar “whoa”s as I marveled at its design.