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If you do any sort of writing (from programming to fiction), chances are that you end up typing many things over and over again. Basic HTML 5 structure, rounded corners for the top left and bottom right in CSS, multiple signatures you use in emails, etc., can all be shortened to a few keystrokes with the help of TextExpander.

It’s the most useful tool that you’ve never heard of! And if you have, you’ll want to read on and find out whether it’s a worthy addition to your iPad…


When any new technology is introduced, one of the more condescending pieces of criticism that is often leveled against it, is being accused of being a toy, a trifle to be fiddled with, not a tool to be taken seriously. I think that one especially hurts, particularly those of us who want to take the iPad seriously, who see the gleaming potential of these shiny new technologies. We see it as a tool for productivity as much as it is a toy for entertainment.

But to be a true tool, an asset for the working professional, you need the right software. And if you’re a writer, there’s nothing more important than a good word processor. The word processor as a genre has had a long and storied history in the realm of personal computing. It was one of the first categories of software to appear on PCs, it’s become the yardstick any new era of computing is measured against. Is there a competent word processor? Can “real” people get “real” work done on it? And the post-PC era is no different.

While many companies, Apple included, are migrating their desktop apps into a form for the iPad, some enterprising smaller businesses are seeing an opportunity. They’re looking to make a name by approaching the iPad for what it is: something new. The app is called Daedalus Touch. The developers are The Soulmen. And they’re rethinking the text editor.


Earlier this week Matthew Guay wrote an in-depth article regarding using an external keyboard with the iPad. It got me wondering how many of you guys use an external keyboard with your iPad?

Is it something that you couldn’t live without or just a beneficial tool for some situations? I personally don’t own one, but how many do?

I could have chosen to do a poll on which external keyboards people have decided upon, which would be interesting but wouldn’t answer what I’d really like to know – what proportion of iPad users go out and complement their purchase with an external keyboard?

Feel free to comment below regarding what keyboards you’ve found to be great, or even why you’re so fond of the external keyboard in general. Should the casual iPad owner seriously consider getting on board?

When Steve Jobs launched the iPhone in 2007, pundits thought he’d lost his mind launching a phone with just a touchscreen. Surely no one wanted to tap on glass all day! Then, the iPhone proved the pundits wrong, and even Blackberry launched a phone with an on-screen touch keyboard.

Last year, the iPad faced the same dilemma. People had come to accept typing on a touchscreen phone, but for a laptop-sized device, surely that wouldn’t cut it.

Then we got the iPad, and discovered that you could actually type quite fast on a full-sized touch screen. So much so, in fact, that many declared the iPad the perfect writing device!

So, is there still any need to get an external keyboard for your iPad? I’ve recently picked up an Apple Bluetooth Keyboard for mine, so keep reading to see what advantages a “real” keyboard brings to the iPad and whether it’s worth getting … or not.


When Steve Jobs unveiled the iPad in early 2010, many people thought it impossible that you’d be able to type accurately at any reasonable rate on a glass touch screen. After all, pundits still regularly mention the iPhone’s lack of buttons as a limitation, and that’s just a phone!

Surely no one would want a netbook-sized device without a physical keyboard! While you could always get a bluetooth keyboard or the keyboard dock, the hinderance to portability is a consequential downside.

So, is it actually possible to type fast and accurately on the iPad without an external keyboard? It turns out, you can definitely type fast and accurately on the iPad virtual keyboard. Keep reading to discover some tips to improve your typing, and find out more about TapTyping, an app that can help speed up your iPad typing. (more…)