Re: your mail

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From: Kragen Sitaker (
Date: Sat Sep 30 2000 - 13:05:18 PDT

Tony Finch writes:
> >With GNS, a user need
> >only push a number key once to choose a particular letter. Google
> >determines the possible queries and presents the user with the most
> >relevant web pages.
> Don't phones already have this built-in -- I mean the number->text
> best-match conversion, not the web search part.

Entering "" on my phone consists of the following steps:
- hit the 'alpha' softkey to switch to Tegic T9 "word" mode
- oops, that got me into "sym1" mode; I want "word" mode; hit the key again
- oops, that got me into "num" mode; hit it again
- ok, in word mode. type 'slashdot': 75274368.
- note that the phone says "slashent". Hit "0". The phone now says
  "slashdot". This step is necessary because once, several weeks ago,
  I typed 'slashent' by accident.
- press 1 for the period
- press the 'word' softkey four times to switch through alpha, sym1,
  and num modes and back into word mode; if I do not do this, the
  period will morph into a hyphen when I start typing letters after it
- dial 'org': 674. Display shows "slashdot.mph_". Hit 0 once to turn
  'mph' into 'org'.
- hit the "OK" softkey.

This is one of the easier text-entry experiences with Tegic. Short
words often require hitting '0' five or ten times to get to the right
word; words not in the dictionary typically end up with a half-typed
word that is different from the one I want, at which point I must
backspace over the entire word, switch into "alpha" mode, and re-enter
the entire word.

According to the article, GNS is like the name-search feature many
voicemail systems feature: dial the name. If you dial 266, rather
than trying to figure out whether you mean Ann or Con, it will simply
provide you with all relevant results from either.

(This Motorola i1000plus makes TRS-80 BASIC look like an intuitive user
interface. WinCE is hardly better.)

<>       Kragen Sitaker     <>
Perilous to all of us are the devices of an art deeper than we ourselves
                -- Gandalf the Grey [J.R.R. Tolkien, "Lord of the Rings"]

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