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This Dead-Simple Idea Could Fix iPad’s Lousy Typing

How do we know? Because (boom) the demo is running on an iPad!

It’s hard to write elegantly on the iPad, to hone your word choice with an edge of only the strongest, most specific verbs. Heck, it’s hard just to type a proper curse word without autocorrect getting in the way. But what if it could be different? What if iPad typing were as easy as real typing?

Hooper Selection is an iPad interface concept by Georgia Tech student Daniel Hooper. He’s so excited about the project that he not only coded and filmed the demo software; he built a Wikipedia page on the technique (the poor man’s copyright for the digital age).

You can’t really blame Hooper’s gusto, because just like Apple’s own pinch-to-zoom, once you see the idea, it’s hard to get it out of your mind.

It’s a simple as this: You type normally at all times. But if you want to move the cursor, just drag your finger around the keyboard, and the cursor moves with it. If you want to drag faster, you use two fingers to move the cursor. And, most usefully, if you want to highlight a word to edit it, just hold shift while cursoring and you’ll highlight it.

Remember how long Apple took to integrate copy and paste (and it still stunk)? Well here’s a better idea: Use Hooper Selection, mixed with two-finger and three-finger taps. Two fingers copies. Three fingers pastes. Because truly, with the incredible intelligence within the iPad’s touch screen, why are we still worrying about hitting the right keys when we could be revolutionizing the keyboard altogether?