auto-correct needs help

This morning I had a texting conversation with my brother which started when he sent me this:

I have very few complaints about the iPhone, but the autocorrect keyboard function is so incredibly unintuitive sometimes, it’s embarrassing.

He later pinpointed one of the primary problems with the feature.

…they have a LOT of really obscure proper nouns, acronyms, etc. and it frequently chooses those over much more sensible words.

I haven’t really thought about it very much, but it is pretty bad. Yesterday I sent a text that I started with “Woohoo!,” which the iPhone promptly auto-corrected to “Elohim!” While it is possible that one day I might send a message referencing Elohim, it isn’t likely to come up from day to day for your average iPhone user.

In fact, there is a popular website (beware, it’s often crude) highlighting this particular deficiency of the iPhone. It can auto-correct some of the simplest words into things that are way out there. Oftentimes, one or two misspelled letters are preferable to a completely altered word that may or may not be even in the ballpark of what you were trying to type.

I’m not sure if auto-correct is over-engineered or under-engineered, but either way it’s far from perfect.

February 17, 2011 at 11:48 am

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