add a way for users to copy code within the app
statistics, focused drills, etc
I would welcome thoughts on how this might work. It seems to me that you could do this by having the keyboard appear so you could type along to copy the code as it is played. This could conceivably be scored in real time or after the fact to give some feedback on your copying skills.
My hesitation for this is that given the tendency for iPhone typing to be not quite as precise as typing on a keyboard plus the autocorrection features, I wonder if the typing would be the slow step, as compared to your ability to copy the code…? At least if you are writing on paper then you are much less likely to mis-type or get ‘incorrectly autocorrected’.
I could see this working for shorter passages of text or individual letters, however. I would welcome ideas and thoughts on how best to do something like this.
I am on lcwo.net, copying code on keyboard, because this is the modern age (yes you can laugh now ;-). More and more people on the lcwo forum say that typing is faster than writing.
Learning to copy morse code on a keyboard works fine, I am at lesson 15 and still happy with that choice. I tried the site on an iPhone and it works, but the autocorrect wreaks havoc with copying random character sets.
Also, some of the punctuation is on different "pages" so having to switch keybards might be problematic for some users not used to fast-typing on an iPhone.
Having said all this, I think there are 2 things to be considered when copying code on an iPhone:
1) See if you can disable the autocorrect for just HamMorse when copying random letter sets in Koch mode
2) Make a special keyboard layout with just the characters in the (current) set.
Hope this helps. Cheers!
Give users the option to copy on keyboard. It won't work for everyone given the shortcomings you describe above, but it will be a great advantage for some people
I see your point about the typing vs writing, but it would be handy to be able to copy code w/o having to sit down with a pencil & paper, from an interstitial practice perspective—being able to grab a few minutes whenever/wherever you can.
It would be great if it could "drill" the user. For beginners have it send a "word" at a time and wait, even if the word was "kkkkk" for more advance users have it wait for a whole sentience or complete QSO before grading. :) And than have it display a random QSO text that the user would need to send back and have the app grade this. my dream morse learning tool come true :)
Kyle Smith commented
Another app does in app copy, but limits it to brief bursts of symbols, followed by a selectable delay in which the user has an opportunity to type in their best effort at copy. It's the first app out there that does this, and while fun at first, it strikes me as quite artificial. No ham would ever send code like that, so it can lead the student to believe they are capable of copying faster than they actually can during a real QSO. I believe the best way to give feedback is after a tx period of a minute or so, during which time the student is allowed to type in their copy, and then they would be presented with what was actually sent, and a score. If you wanted to go the extra mile, you could give the student a histogram of which symbols they missed, and how frequently an error was made on a per symbol basis. More importantly than the way you report each individual practice session, would be the reporting of trends over time. Maybe a graph showing their score as a function of minutes of practice. Let me step out of the third person, and say that I find your app to be the most useable of all of the apps presently available. I am learning the code as a personal growth challenge. It seems that just at the moment in history when morse code can be completely automated, there is quite a resurgence of interest in being able to manually copy the code by ear. I wish you success in putting out your next release.
de Kyle AG2F
Adminsimon.twigger (Admin, AA9PW) commented
Thanks for your excellent ideas. I agree that bluetooth keyboards are a good way to do this, particularly on the smaller iPod/iPhone. Similarly, having the ability to measure and track progress within the app is a must-have to make the best use of the Koch and this will also open up a bunch of other options that I have been wanting to try.
I should say that the app does not yet officially support the iPad in that there is no full size iPad interface yet, though other than bug fixes, that is at the top of the to do list right now. I think with that extra space it should be eminently possible to allow text entry. The autocorrect feature can be turned off as required so that will not be a problem.
In terms of visually comparing what was correct vs incorrect, do you have any thoughts on how you might like that to look?
Firstly, thanks for a great app! Very well thought out. On the subject of an in-app user code copy feature:
- Bluetooth keyboards are now available since the last post by Paul in 2010. This would indeed be a great way to allow copying, likely at the maximum the app allows.
- I would think your hesitation with respect to the iPhone's tap keyboard inefficiencies due to autocorrect are well-founded. It is a feature that can be turned off, that is, if there isn't a way to programmatically exempt a given text field from autocorrect in the iOS SDK.
- I see that your app now supports the iPad, which probably solves the inefficiencies of copying using the small keyboard of the iPhone.
- Another means of copying could be through iCloud. A small Mac-based application that pushes text to the iCloud could then be retrieved as the "last one entered" by the iPhone/iPad App to corroborate the copy.
Overall, I think the in-app copy function would be well worth it, as it is almost essential to see how one's progressing, particularly in the Koch method. Using another app before finding yours, I had been spending a sizeable amount of time doing copy/paste operations to visually compare copied text versus the generated one and this is very tedious.
Thanks again and cheers,
Paul Bigwood commented
Simon, I understand that the next firmware update for IPhone will allow a bluetooth keyboard to be used for text entry. I would hold off this until that comes as t he existing soft keyboard would be too slow I think above about 18wpm. Paul