Because I have been creating text based content over the past month you have not been able to watch me slowly lose my mind as my shiny new MacBook Pro autocorrected my blog posts into unintelligible messes. To be fair I’m not the best typist. I definitely type like a geek of my generation. Pretty slow, with LOTS of edits. This generally hasn’t been a problem for me because I can just see any words that have a red line under them and go back to correct them. When I started using my new MacBook Pro for writing I began to wonder if I was slowly losing my mind.
The reason being is that the autocorrect on MacOS is very responsive, and very bad all at the same time. If you leave a single letter put of a word MacOS will change the word to whatever random one it wants. Better yet with auto fill if you type something that is part of a word and then hit the space bar you’ll some genuinely bizarre results. What makes this horrible as a writer is that in fact the idiotic words that MacOS has added to your text are SPELLED CORRECTLY.
So the way I normally type is to tippy tap along leaving a trail of half words, and hashed up spellings. After I’m done with the post I look back at all the words with red lines under them and manually correct them. Past that I’ll do a final review and then publish the piece. With autocorrect there are NO red lines. When I get done I’m looking at a post that appears to be perfectly typed out. So now I have to go back and read every sentence, catch every odd word choice, and verify what is on the page is what I actually meant to write. It’s been a tedious process, and I’ve been having to edit long finished posts due to issues I over looked before.
If you’re using a Mac to write I’d highly suggest you turn the autocorrect feature off and just use whatever is built into the word processing software that you are using. Over the past month I thought maybe I was messing up because I wasn’t used to the keyboard, but at a certain point realized even I shouldn’t be this bad at typing. Once I went into System Preferences -> Keyboard -> Text and changed the autocorrect settings writing on the Mac became much easier.
This is a good lesson on why end users become so nervous whenever they are forced to migrate to a new system. Even a small and easily changed setting can end up being a real pain when you’re trying to get work done. It’s also a reminder that while technically “yes” Apple products “just work” they don’t necessarily work in the way an average rational person would expect them to.