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Old 11-18-2010, 09:30 AM   #1
scanner
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text input

hello

what is the fastest, easiest, generally best method of text input in a portable device? (mobile phone, handheld, etc)

I think touch keyboard is not handy, hardware keyboard can be slow, what is your opinion? is there any other better alternative?

thanks!
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:31 AM   #2
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Have the secretary type it and have her email it straight to your device.

Last edited by wannabee; 11-26-2010 at 05:44 PM.
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:08 PM   #3
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Many mobile devices allow use of an optional, external keyboard (usually bluetooth). That is probably 'best' for extended typing - though you will need a surface to put the keyboard on, and some way to stow it for travel (it won't typically fit in a pocket or purse).

Another way is speech-to-text. I have Dragon Dictation on my iPod Touch and it works reasonably well.

Finally don't underestimate your ability to adapt to tiny keyboards or touch keyboards. It will never be as fast as a full size keyboard but especially with an auto-complete feature it will get much faster over time.
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Old 11-19-2010, 04:58 PM   #4
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+1 speech to text is the fastest I've seen. I often use verbal entry to the Google app on my iPhone.
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Old 11-26-2010, 11:00 AM   #5
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anything more innovative?
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Old 11-26-2010, 12:21 PM   #6
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Innovation? There is a one hand 'keyboard' device ...
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Old 11-29-2010, 05:49 PM   #7
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which?
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Old 11-29-2010, 08:44 PM   #8
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There are many one-handed keyboards, and several websites devoted to them, such as http://www.onehandedkeyboard.com/. I actually considered getting a Frog Pad once. To answer the original question, I'd like to see an eight-way directional pad controlling an onscreen virtual keyboard that's a three-by-three grid of three-by-three squares. You could type using just a thumb.

a_b_c_____j_k_l_____s_t_u
d_e_f_____m_n_o_____v_w_x
g_h_i_____p_q_r_____y_z_.

1_2_3_____,_?_'_____ˇ_˘_˛
4_5_6_____BS_Sh_!___§_÷_°
7_8_9_____0_(_)_____ŏ_ō_ő

And so on (you get the general idea), where Sh here means Shift and BS means Backspace and the bottom triad is not shown). You start in the center square of the center block, on Shift. Press any direction key and you move to the center square of the adjoining block (unless you press Center to stay in the current block).

That means your standard letter is two key presses: lowercase j is north-northwest. Capitalize by first hitting the middle key: center-northeast-center gives uppercase W. I'm showing an accented letter O set here, because it's clearer than having naked diacritics, which they'd likely be onscreen. In any case, you can see that an accented lowercase letter is four key presses:
long u would be east-south-northeast-northeast. (Two keys select an accent, then it puts you back at center-center to pick the letter. You can see some built-in awareness here.)

More accents and characters in the bottom trio of grids. You can modify the grids; I think you can have one for shortcuts, so if you use Ú often, you could set it as a normal two-key instead of a four. You could have squares that call up different grids, and so on.

The point is that this could all be done with a thumb, and basic letters and numbers could probably be done without looking with very little practice.
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:54 AM   #9
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I reme

Edit
Oh well sometimes things don't print as expected.
End edit

Last edited by wannabee; 12-12-2010 at 05:50 AM.
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Old 12-12-2010, 02:57 AM   #10
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The only thing more innovative than keyboard or speech-to-text would be thought-to-text, which I've so far only seen in science fiction.

Last edited by traponk; 12-12-2010 at 03:01 AM. Reason: typo
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