Scribing and Imbibing

July 22, 2008

A Post from Aleph, My New iPhone 3G

Filed under: Blogging,Frustration,Writing — Rich @ 1:33 pm

Well, WordPress has released their blogging application for the iPhone. So far I’m liking it! (For the record, this entire blog post was composed in iPhone WordPress.)

My attempts at typing with the few iPhones I’ve had the privilege to handle in be past were disastrous, but after a week with Aleph, I’m becoming quite comfortable. What they say about just forging on despite the most horrible apparent typos is true: Apple’s “all the keys pressed in the process of producing ‘rgisw’ are QWERTY-keyboard-close to the letters of the word ‘those’ in my dictionary and nothing else makes sense, so ‘those’ it is” algorithm is impressive indeed. There have been moments where typing on this device has been faster than other portable devices I’ve used–even the Cingular 8125, my previous favorite. It’s certainly less fatiguing, since there aren’t any physical keys to press, and I can just bounce my fingertips off the glass in the general region of the keys I intended to press. Very nice indeed, and available to all applications the iPhone offers.

Text editing, on the other hand, could use some work. There’s no copy, cut or paste, so that’s out, and cursor placement is accomplished by a “magnifying loupe” that shows up when a finger is held on top of text for a second or so. Rudimentary, but functional–if not really suitable for heavy use. Again, a limitation of the unit more than a criticism of WordPress itself, but relevant for the aspiring blogger.

Will I be using Aleph for lengthy posts on a regular basis? Probably not. Still, it’s nice to know that it’s a real possibility should it be necessary.

-Rich

June 11, 2008

In Which the Writer Learns that Despite Indications, He's a Control Freak

Filed under: Craft,Frustration,Writing — Rich @ 12:09 pm
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Those who know me know that I am not, in most ways, an organized or tidy person. Laundry gets done “whenever”; my desks at home and work are horrific masterpieces of “three-dimensional filing”; I’m bad about keeping up with my paper mail, or for that matter much of the non-radioactive correspondence I engage in, whether paper- or electron-based. I do like to keep myself well-groomed and clean (and have been accused of being a snappier-than-necessary dresser on more than one occasion), but on the whole my life is an ever-developing collision of well-adjusted, shrug-and-grin messes.

When writing, though, I find that the smallest questions I can’t answer, the tiniest continuity or worldbuilding niggles that crop up, stop prose production cold while I chase down answers: metallurgy? speciation? optics? orbital mechanics? thermodynamics? story structure? characterization? timeline tweaks? All fodder for my stop-working-and-get-the-plan-right bug.

Analysis paralysis? Oh, yes. But there’s also a surprising perfectionism to the process that tells me I need to smack my internal editor around a bit and just get more writing done.

-Rich

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