Tag Archives: app

Gorilla iPhone Stand

iPod Touch Writing

This post is a response to an email sent by a reader.

Chronically ill, she spends a lot of time on a recliner writing and surfing the web, but her 17 inch laptop is too heavy to keep on her lap.

She’s thinking about getting an iPad to write on, but she also wants to know if she’d be just as happy writing on her iPod Touch instead.

I replied:

Sorry to hear that you’re sick. Writing is such a good way to be productive when you’re too unwell to do anything else.

I think you could be just as happy with a Bluetooth Keyboard and your iPod Touch. But first, I need to check a few things with you.

How old is your iPod Touch? If it can run iOS4 you’re good to go. It means you can use all the latest word processing apps and connect to a Bluetooth keyboard too.

Do you already own a Bluetooth keyboard? (You mention “the Bluetooth keyboard” in your email, so it sounds like you’ve already got one.)

If you don’t have a Bluetooth keyboard, I recommend the Apple Wireless Keyboard. It’s cheap (only $100 or so new) and extremely comfortable and light. It works beautifully with Mac devices running iOS4 and with laptops as well. This means even if you decide not to write on your iPod Touch, the keyboard isn’t wasted. You can put your heavy laptop onto a nearby table and write on it using the feather-light Apple Wireless Keyboard on your lap.

If you want to write on your iPod Touch, I recommend starting out with a free app. The Mail app is built into the iPod Touch. Just do your writing in an email and email it to your laptop when you’re finished.

If you enjoy that, get yourself a tripod for your iPod Touch so you can write more ergonomically. This extendable tripod only costs about $6 from eBay:

iPhone Tripod Stand

Tripod stand - try searching eBay for "iPhone tripod"

It will be useful if you want to put your iPod Touch on a nearby table at eye level. You can balance it on your recliner too (I use it on my bed) but you’ll have to hold it steady each time you move.

If you want to attach your iPod Touch to your recliner, you might want to try a Gorilla-style tripod such as this one:

Gorilla iPhone Stand

Gorilla iPhone stand - try searching eBay for "Gorilla iPhone stand"

The flexible legs can wrap around the arms of your recliner and hold your iPod Touch steady.

The next step in iPod Touch writing would be purchasing the TextExpander app for autocorrection as you type. You could also buy a word processing app. There are hundreds available. I recommend My Writing Spot or Notebooks if you don’t use formatting such as italics or bolding in your writing. If you use formatting, Doc2 is an inexpensive, but fully featured app.

So there you are. I hope that answered your questions. If you have any more, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Regards,

Charl

charl@iphonewriting.com

http://www.iphonewriting.com/

Twitter: iPhoneWriting

Write a Letter to Santa

Write a Letter to Santa

Write a Letter to SantaWrite a Letter to Santa app allows younger children (and adults if that’s your thing!) to send Santa a festive drawing.

Older children can sent Santa a letter that lists what they want for Christmas.

Sending the letter or the drawing leads to an animation of Santa’s reply.

The app remembers the letter so that Santa and parents can view the present list afterwards.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Charl at iPhone Writing!

TextExpander

TextExpander


TextExpanderAre typing mistakes something you never make? Do you live for writing out long repetitive email signatures or web addresses? Is going back and capitalising words your hobby?

If so, TextExpander is not the app for you.

But if you’re one of the 99.9 percent of people who hate doing those things, TextExpander is an absolute must.

TextExpander works simply, but the end result is very powerful. The app monitors your keystrokes inside other apps that support it. Then it compares what you’re typing to the keystroke combinations stored in its database. These keystroke combinations are called Snippets. There are thousands of predefined Snippets and it’s easy to add your own.

When TextExpander recognises a keystroke combination you’ve typed, it replaces it with the relevant Snippet, which could be the correct spelling of a word you always misspell, an email signature, or an email or web address. Snippets can be only a letter long or go on for paragraphs. After making the substitution, TextExpander beeps to let you know. You can change or turn off this beep if you like.

TextExpander can save you literally hours of typing and editing. It’s an app that’s valuable the moment you choose to install the predefined Snippets and it only gets more valuable over time as you customise it to your writing style by adding Snippets of your own.

TextExpander works on the iPad, iPod touch, and there’s a version for the Mac as well. All these versions can sync wirelessly with each other, so if you add new Snippets to one of your devices, you can easily update the others.

If you’re at all serious about writing on your iPhone, you need TextExpander.

TextExpander app is US$4.99, and the Mac version is US$34.95.

Dropbox Icon

Dropbox

Dropbox IconDropbox is one of the must-have apps for the iPhone. It’s a free service (if you’re storing under two gigs of data) and it puts a folder on your iPhone that you can drag and drop files into from your Mac or Windows computer.

Think of what you could do with that! You could drag and drop PDF files onto your iPhone for later reading in either the Notebooks or iBooks apps. You could drop in the photographs you’ve just taken, for your family and friends to pick up.

Writers can use Dropbox to store text documents that can be accessed and edited from your iPhone and home computer. No longer will you have to email documents to yourself, paste text into your word processor and not be quite sure if you’re looking at the latest version of the document.

If you use Scrivener 2.0, you can arrange to share a text folder that you can edit from both your home computer and your iPhone.

Dropbox is an absolute must-have for writers, and best of all it’s free if you use under two gig of storage space. After that, plans start at US$9.99 a month.