Thursday, February 08, 2007

The Killer Web 2.0 app...AutoCorrect

As I write this, I am using a Blogger form on my Firefox browser. Not a client app; a browser. Firefox is smart enough to recognize words I am typing as misspelled, by helpfully underlining them in red. Blogger helpfully includes a Spell Check function, before I post.

Can someone explain why they can't just correct me?

The one thing that has been holding me back from fleeing from the client app and embracing Web 2.0 is, quite simply, the ability to auto correct my spelling errors. It's the single biggest thing that prevents me from making GMail or Zimbra my platform of choice. It's the one killer feature that Outlook has (by way of Word integration), and keeps me tethered to the desktop.

Now, Firefox goes a long way with the proactive identification of misspelled words, but, as it has the ability to observe and identify, why not correct? But even there is not enough; what about IM clients? The closest I have found is As-U-Type, which looks at EVERYTHING you type, and learns over time, but even it is clumsy, compared to Word, and intrusive. I cannot believe that Firefox does not have an extension for this, or that there is no other option.

I know: "Just take a typing class." Well, I've taken 2. I still type with 4-6 fingers only, and about 10x as fast as anyone else I know. And yes, I still mostly look at the keys. But no matter how many times I type, I still make the same mistakes: transposing the "n" and the "g" in "transposing," for instance. I can't hit an apostrophe the first time, no matter what; that damned semicolon thinks it's the one.

The point is, Word and Outlook have become the true captors of me, because they simply learn, and do it elegantly. I find Webmail frustrating, and don't get me started on the Google suite: you'd think THEY would understand.

Developers, hear me: make a solid, OS-level spell autocorrect, with an elegant interface, and the world will beat a paht to your door. ;-)

1 comment:

Lani Chin said...

paht? You need Auto Correct BADLY ;)