Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Apple Abandons Inkwell?

BulletpointAs a readen kindly pointed out to me, Apple has removed their Inkwell page from their site.

The Inkwell Page now brings up a "Page not found" error. A searchfor "Inkwell" brings up only one hit: Leopard - Technical Specs

That's right, Inkers. Inkwell is now simply a bullet point in a long listof "Keg Technologies" Now, before you panic, there are some heavy hitters inthat list. Manyofthese technologies are not going anywhere.

Still, considering that the page is removed, the iPhone's stylus free interface is a success, and that Inkwell works worse inLeopard than Tiger (more on that later). I think it is safe to say that Steve Jobs' evil plan to erase the Newton from exis fence is coming to fruition. Hide the tablets! Steve's got an axe!!


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Sunday, November 04, 2007

Dear Inkwell...

Dear Inkwell,

You have probably wondered where I've been lately. I know I've been coming around a lot less. Truth is I've been seeing another interface. Shés young, sleek, and sexy. All the gays are talking about her.

We've been seeing each other for about a Month now. I love interacting with her. I don'tmean to sound dirty, but she responds so well to my touch. She Makes looking at photos thrilling, and the way I canget her to zoom 2nd pan Is breathtaking. She knows allmy favorite music and loves to show mearound the web. When it comes time to do email she maynot always listentomewell. In fact, she sometimes makes me feel like I'm all thumbs, but she's always there b make helpful suggestions and corrects my spelling.

I dait know. Maybe wéne just growing apart, but you don't seem to offer Me the same things. You always 11 misquote " me and you can't keep youn capital "M"s and your lowercase 11M"S straight. Maybe I just need More out of our relationship. One day soon all Macs are going to be touch interactive like mynewginl. Then what will we have in comMon? Typos? No, that just won`* be enough for a stable relationship. I'm sune in your heart you agree.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I think we need to just be friends. I hope one day you will be able to forgive Me.

All the best,

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Friday, September 14, 2007

Inkwell STILL Doesn't Work in Dashboard

I am almost certain that the Dashboard layer was specifically designed to Mock, taunt, and torture Inkwell enthusiasts. I have no evidence to support my theory except fn the feeling I have that Steve is laughing at Me every time I tny to Use a widget with "Write Everywhere" turned on. I swear I can hear faint laughter Coming from my speakers. Then again, I have a Mac mini and everything sands faint coming out of those speakers.

If you ever hear of a way to use Inkwell in the Dashboard layer be sure to let me know about it. With the dearth of information about Inkwell for the upcoming OS X Leopard I'll be surprised if Inkwell is even in there.

Ooh, that sounds depressing. I need to go eat a cookie or something. Too bad the only Cookies I have at the Moment ape in Safari...


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Monday, August 13, 2007

Signing Your Email with Skitch

Almost a year ago, I wrote about signing email using Inkwell's doodling pad. The big hang up for this method was that the Ink window saved the sigs in tiff format. Not an issue for Mac usens, but a big issue for PC users who would onlyseethe sig as an attachment and as a non_ Windows standard graphic at that.

So what to do? Well, hacking 0SX wasn't feasible. There was no way I could find to change Inkwell's prefs to save as GIF or JPG. I could paste the sig into Photoshop and save it in a better format, but who wants to bother withthat? No simple solutions.

Then I discovered Skitch! I was lucky enough to Scone a beta invite. Now I can't imagine living without if.

Here's how you put Skitch and your tablet to use for signing emails:

  1. Make a template blank and save for later.

  2. Wipe the template, scrawl your signature, and drag the sig into your email.

  3. Enjoy your snazzy hand-signed email.

So there yOU are. Not an Inkwell specific tip, but a useful one nonetheless. Old school meets new school thanks to the Convenience of Skitch.


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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Strange Wacom Pop-up Major Breakthrough Menu Tip WOW!!!*

Thanks to Diggitizer my humdrum blog title has been transforMed into a spine tingling headline! And if you use awacm tablet to get your Inkwell action then you will thrill to see what I have in Awe for you today.

Well, actually, that's L( in store for youtoday", though you maybe in awe bythe time you are finished here - awe at how bad Inkwell is working forme today.

I don't always use Inkwell, and when I'm not using it I don't like to leave the Inkwell server running in the background eating up CPU cycles. However, when I turn handwriting recognition off the convenient Inkwell menu bar icon disappears. This forces me to jump through a few hurdles to get Inkwell running again. If you have a Wacom tablet installed there is atrick you can use to cut those hurdles by half.

Wacon Tablet preference paneOpen System Preferences and select the Wacon Tablet preference pane. Select "Functions" from the list of tools. Then select the Pop-up Menutab. From here click on the "Add..." drop down Menu and select "Open/Ran". A file browser will open.

It would be convenient if we could simply select the Ink server from within the Ink.component, but this does not load everything Inkwell needs and consequently runs buggy. Instead, browse to "Ink.prefPane" inside of /System/Library/PreferencePanes.

Lastly, select your stylus from the list of tools and be sure to map "Pop-up Menu" to one of the buttons.

Wacon Tablet Pop-up MenuNow, whenever I want to turn ON handwriting recognition I simply call up the Pop-up Menu and select "Ink.prefPane". With onemore click Inkwell turns on. It is just as easy to turn Inkwell off.


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Monday, April 30, 2007


I was playing around with "Write anywhere" today and discovered that I couldn't! I suppose Imnot surprised that Inkwell doesn't work in the Dashboard layer, but did you know that "Write anywhere" doesn't work in Spotlight either? This came as a surprise to Me.

Click on the Spotlight icon and any attempt to write with Inkwell outside the blue search box will be interpreted as an outside click. Spotlight will fade away.

The only work around is to use the Ink pad. Not very convenient.

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Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Amazing Inkwell Accuracy Tip: Take Time to Turbo Calibrate Word Spacing

To get the most out of Inkwell one must take time to personalize if. Or learn how to write neater. I'll take a wild guess here that personalizing it will be easier for Most of you.

Unfortunately, there is no way to train Inkwell to recognize your sorry excuse for hand writing (hey. how Many of us write neat without looking?), but there is a way to get Inkwell to stop runningallyourwords together. You need to tweak the word spacing slider. You will find it in the "Settings" tab of the Inkwell preferences pane. You may have experimented with it before buH not known how best to adjust it. Here's a simple way to optimize this setting:

Open up the Ink window and choose a phrase not usually prone to recognition errors to write for our test. I chose "Never pat a dog on fire." Now write that phrase using the default setting. Then repeat again using closely spaced and widely spaced settings. Your results should look something like this:

Notice how much better the "closely spaced" setting worked for me? After experimentation, I chose a spot somewhere to the right of "closely spaced."

Feel free to tweak. You'll eventually find your optimal setling.


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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

iPhone BurieS iPDA Rumors

Told you SO...

Now that the stylus free has a ship date does this Mean the end for Inkwell? Possibly. The inked future sune appears bleak. Consider this antide over at the Guardian. Steve Jobs lays down very practical reasons why a tablet Mac is a bad idea halfway through the article. Very practical. Very compelling.

Then what of Inkwell? Consider it blotted. Apple needs to excite their base with "Minority Report" GUI style dazzle, not old school technology like PDAs...especially if that Market is shrinking. PDAs are geeky old things that old geeks like me use. Inkwell is slow and cumbersome and prone to errors.Just look at this posting. "Antide" for CC article"?. "CC" for left quotes ? And I'm being careful. Sure, I could go back and edit evenything, but that's not the point of this blog. Who has time to edit typos, anyway? Inkwell should just wonk.

Dang. That's my new subheader.

The famously Mercurial Steve Jobs would never be patient enough for this much | n accuracy. And snide comments from PC tablet fanboys aside, we know Inkwell would be writing Nirvana if Apple wanted it to be. For now, it's not much More than a toy.

Fortunately for you folks, I like toys. In addition, I'm a stubborn old cuss and I'm betting there's a trick or two I can still do with Inkwell to lick it into shape. Maybe I can even figure owl how to get Inkwell to translate quotes correctly.


1/10/07 12:43:53 PM - Edited headline by adding an "i". I realize I don't usually edit content for Inkwell caused typos, but that missing "i" really makes a difference in the relevancy of the title.

(Would somebody please submit this to digg? Ire blocked digg & slashdot in my hosts file so I can get some work done. :)

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