The Qwerty keyboard is 138 years old, and ever since it was adopted, people have been messing with it _ without effect, until now.
Do your best to type, then swipe, and Fleksy will (usually) figure out what you actually wanted to type in the first place.
Literally thousands of inventors, linguists, academics, doctors learned what sentient people realised instinctively, that Churchill was correct: The Qwerty keyboard was the worst possible system except for all the others.
And then, there was Steve Jobs. When he stol... er, adapted the BlackBerry system for his products, he invented something else on which to vent ridicule.
If the iOS typing system on the iPhone isn't the worst possible typing system for small devices ever, give me another candidate.
Do you even read Damnyouautocorrect.com? Mr Jobs' infernal invention changes "I spoke to Chris" to "I spoke to Christ". Try to tell your boss to "Wait for a second" and the iPhone types "Wait for a sexing"(my boss is still unamused by that one). I suggested to spouse to "pick me up at Siam" and the Jobsian text received by spouse was to "oil me up at seven". To which the answer back was "Yes dead spouse" _ when it should have been "dear".
All of this is by the newest, alleged improvement to the Qwerty keyboard. Apple and others call it predictive texting or auto-correct. It's a terrific idea when it works, and as awful as a Dvorak typewriter when it doesn't. Or worse.
Auto-correct only works when it actually is smarter than you. On average, this seems to occur about once every 14 years. That is not an exact statistic, since predictive typing hasn't been on the iPhone for 14 years yet.
The only thing that is worse than nonsensical predictions about my texting is trying to find a way to turn them off. The Great Steve (and who would question his judgement?) made turning off the iPhone auto-correction as simple as turning off an aggressive drunk at a Ratchada disco.
No. I take that back, because if you drop the iPhone to the floor and crush its sensitive part with a high-heel stomp, you haven't really solved anything, whereas with the unwelcome stalker you have solved everything.
A lot of people get used to predictive typing, learn its tricks, accept its foibles and get on with life. There is no particular reason to do this, any more than there ever was a reason to switch keyboard layouts.
A lovely new iOS app means you don't have to jump between your own legs backwards to turn off predictive typing and you can have a terrific typing system that would have made Steve salivate had he lived to scope it out. If Apple doesn't stea.... er, adapt this app for iOS, it's missing the boat. Fleksy will cost you a small amount of money for its two University of Warwick inventors, but you can try it before you buy it. The free trial version of the programme is not a lot more useful than a demonstration, but the hands-on just may convince you.
It convinced me to hand over 150 baht from the tiny trove awarded to software reviewers.
Native iOS is type and hope. Fleksy is type and swipe. It works like this.
Go ahead and type your text. At any point during or after a mistyped, misspelt or uncertain word _ or if you just want to stop hunting and pecking _ swipe. Fleksy will correct what you've written or, with another downward swipe, give you a dropdown list of possible choices _ sort of like your computer's word processor.
Swipe left and your last word is deleted. Swipe right and hold for a new line or paragraph. A swipe when the cursor is at a blank space will insert punctuation. Add words to the Fleksy dictionary by typing them once, then swiping upwards.
Now, as they say, your mileage will vary here. If you love iOS predictive texting you probably haven't even read this far, dismissing the whole column as crazed nonsense.
But if you hate it or even just get annoyed sometimes at how obtuse auto-correction is, you don't want to try Fleksy, you need to try Fleksy.
The free download lets you type and swipe all you want. But you can't export or copy your text outside the app. So probably within an hour or two, you will either delete Fleksy or buy the real deal. The full version gives you email and Twitter directly from the app, and the ability to quickly copy text for pasting into other apps.
And there is this good news: Fleksy will soon be available for Android and Windows 8 phones.
Fleksy has its own website of course at Fleksy.com and you can download and/or buy it at the Apple iTunes store at tinyurl.com/7wbxz5o.