Tuesday, August 20, 2019

New Dotterel Release!

Nimble has released Dotterel v0.2.0-dev, a new Android steno keyboard app that's compatible both with NKRO devices (using a USB-OTG adapter) and with your phone or tablet's on-screen keyboard.
  • Add support for custom systems defined in JSON. This allows for customising keys, prefix and suffix strokes, orthography rules and command aliases among other things.
  • Add new orthography model based on finding longest matching end of word followed by longest start of suffix (for use in addition to regex orthography model).
  • Add improved English orthography rules.
  • Add commands for performing Android IME actions.
  • {IME:EDITOR_ACTION} Perform editor action, usually submit or search.
  • {IME:SWITCH_PREVIOUS} Switch to previous IME.
  • {IME:SWITCH_NEXT} Switch to next IME.
  • {IME:SWITCH:ime} Switch directly to IME ime.
  • {IME:SHOW_PICKER} Show IME picker dialog.
  • Add dialog to go to keyboard settings screen when Dotterel is currently disabled.
  • Improve dictionary load performance.
  • Change behaviour of {>} to match Plover's (only change first character to lowercase). This was causing issues with uppercase fingerspelling
  • translations following lowercase fingerspelling translations.
  • Fix Dotterel ignoring back button instead of closing the soft keyboard.
  • Fix version string in about page showing as undefined on some devices.

Download the new Dotterel apk here! Thanks, Nimble!

Friday, August 9, 2019

Di's Misstroke Dictionary

A lot of steno beginners find themselves perplexed and somewhat intimidated by the many misttrokes included in the Plover default dictionary. While I'd argue that misstrokes are at worst harmless and at best quite useful, for a learner who's using the dictionary as a tool to grasp the finer points of stenographic theory, they can be a bit confusing. If that's you, and you feel like misstrokes have been holding you back, check out this misstroke-free dictionary (along with several other interesting dictionaries) by the ever wonderful Di. She says:

The aim is to remove all the misstrokes from dict.json to give new stenographers greater confidence in learning new briefs. The first step is to remove all the misstrokes for the shortest available brief for every word. If there’s a misstroke in a longer word, it is less likely to be suggested by Typey Type or dictionary look up tools.

It follows Plover's default main.json dictionary with misstrokes removed from the top 10,000 words. You can use this dictionary instead of Plover’s.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Kenneth Whups Typeracer on Video



I've been skeptical of Kenneth's ROPE system in the past as a too arbitrary and memory-intensive briefing method that might be hard for other people to use, but it's clearly working for him! Check out this  impressive video of him plowing through 15 short Typeracer texts at 200+ WPM!

Friday, July 12, 2019

Two TinyMods and a Georgi



I've got two lightspringed TinyMods and a newly reinforced Georgi to try out! Reviews coming shortly.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Quick Tip to Stenofy Popular Typing Game

Epistory header image: a fantasy figure on a horse

Jessica on the Plover Google Group writes:
Hey, just wanted to let anybody who's trying to practice while playing games that Epistory Typing Chronicles will work with Plover if you change the input setting from "enter" to "space" in Epistory and also have your space follow your stroke in Plover.

I also found out today that you can mod the Epistory dictionary, which would be a nice way to get some practice in of specific briefs, but the included dictionary is also a nice run for your money, with fingerspelling required for a lot of it.

People have been vexed in the past that Epistory wasn't Plover-compatible, so it's very cool to see that it's possible to make it work! I relied on typing games like Typestriker to get through steno school, so I'm really happy to see that the well-regarded Epistory can finally be used as a tool for steno learning.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Where's That Georgi Review?

I know I've kept y'all waiting for it for quite some time, but the truth is, the initial design of the Georgi featured connectors that were a bit fragile and unstable, and that's been a bit of a barrier to use for both me and several other Georgi customers. Germ is fixing them as they're returned to him, and all new units are being shipped out with reinforced connectors so that the problem doesn't recur, but I'm waiting to test the new model before I give my full review. Spoiler alert: The design in general is pretty dang fantastic, and if the solution he's come up with to stabilize the connectors actually works, this is gonna be a world class little machine.

ETA: Check out this video Georgi made of the newly redesigned connectors:

(Content note: Video contains some exultant F-bombs; those of delicate sensibilities might prefer to watch without sound.)