Abstract Academic: Typing with my thumbs

So, I’m writing this whole column with my thumbs.

“But why?” you may ask. “Why just the thumbs? Are you that unskilled as a typist? Or were you involved in some sort of tragic, double-handed, digit-dicing bandsaw accident?”

No, I was not. I’m actually typing this, character by character, on my iPhone. I’m also verbally dictating certain paragraphs using Siri. Have you heard of her? No, I guess you wouldn’t have. She only lives in my phone. But she’s very helpful.

Well, mostly helpful. She can be a little troublesome if you aren’t very clear as to what you are dictating. For instance, dictating the word “dictating” took me a few tries to successfully “dictate” without getting The Signpost into a lot of legal trouble.

But first, the typing. I’m using some little notepad-thingy, and it’s surprisingly accurate. Technology has a come a long way since I was learning to type on those old Corel Word Perfect programs. The fact that I could do my entire final paper for my Communication 2110 class using just this two-inch by four-inch electronic box is an idea I never could have conceived of just a year ago.

Wait, what? These things have been around for how long? Oh.

Anyway, I’ve found that there are a few problems I’m running into while trying to type this column.

1. I have thumbs like pickles (p.s. Thumbs Like Pickles would be a great album title). Trying to type is difficult when the pads of your thumbs hit four letters at the same time. I tend to see a lot of innocent regular words getting corrupted by stray j’s, vile p’s and all other useless letters, like q. I mean, c’mon. Q is sort of the Rutherford B. Hayes of the alphabet.

In fact, my thumb-typing is so bad I may as well be trying to write this column by dropping marbles onto a keyboard from the top of a ladder. Actually, not a bad idea . . . too late, though.

2. Editing is difficult when you a) can only see about one line of text on the screen, b) don’t know how many words you’ve typed, and c) have a difficult time moving the cursor around (again, pickle-thumb issues).

3. Just like any computer program that thinks it’s smarter than we are, this cod yam predictive text function is always assuming it knows what the shell I wan to right.

And, finally, 4. Siri is the living worst. As in any bad relationship, you find that one or more parties is hearing the other person but not listening to them. For instance, as I was cursing the heavens and telling Siri what I thought of her listening skills, she thought I called her, among several things, “more yawn hick” and “a bomb in a bull.” There were a lot of even funnier, far more obscene Mad-Gabs™, but my editors decided these would, once again, put The Signpost into legal trouble.

But do you want to know the worst part about Siri? She consistently spurns my advances.

Ham you, Siri. Ham you.

Anyway, I just successfully wrote an entire column about writing columns, again. And I tricked you into reading it by using this iPhone gag. So, there. And now, I need to go, because it looks like my phone’s battery is dy—