Why does autocorrect suck so badly

I think this counts as a factual question.

I got a smartphone about a month ago. Before that I used an ipod touch (1st generation) and a non-smartphone.

With my ipod touch when I would take notes the autocorrect was fairly helpful. If I wrote something like ‘thqt’ it would change it to ‘that’. It wasn’t always perfect, but I would say about 70% of the time autocorrect had corrected what I was trying to write. Sometimes I’d use a word or abbreviation and the ipod would try to correct it, but I’d just go back and change it back. It didn’t constantly try to pick spanish words, and it didn’t pick esoteric words that were totally out of context in place of correctly spelled words. If I spelled a word correctly it left it alone, it didn’t change it to a spanish word or a word totally out of context.

Fast forward to now, and autocorrect on my android phone is worse than useless. Useless would be an improvement. It constantly changes words into words I didn’t pick and that don’t fit into the context of the sentences or paragraphs.

Not only that, but it keeps trying to put spanish words into what I am writing. That seems like a very, very basic software issue that autocorrect shouldn’t have to be dealing with. Why would it think I want to use spanish words if every word I have ever used has consistently been english? Shouldn’t one of the most basic, fundamental factors in ‘autocorrect’ include the software being able to recognize what language the person doing the typing is trying to type in? How the fuck can software correct your spelling errors if it doesn’t even know what language you are typing in? That is like a mechanic who can’t find the engine. If you can’t master something that basic, how the hell can you be expected to do anything with any fine detail?

I am really impressed by how effective speech to text technology is. I can speak something and it translates really well. But something basic like autocorrect is hellishly bad. I constantly have to go back to fix autocorrect’s screwups.

not only that, but autocorrect doesn’t even correct anything. If I write ‘thqt’, it keeps it and doesn’t correct it. I have almost never seen it actually correct something to what I want it to do, 90-95% of the time it is picking spanish or random words and using them instead of the words I want. Plus a lot of the time it doesn’t even recognize words. Basic words too like ‘nametag’.

So my question (which I think is factual) is why does autocorrect technology suck so badly? Why did autocorrect on the note taking app for my 1st generation ipod touch work when that was 2007 technology while autocorrect on an android phone is so horrible in 2013? You’d assume because autocorrect on my note taking app on my ipod left correct words alone, never translated anything into spanish, and actually corrected misspelled words that after 6 years of technology advances autocorrect would be even better. But it sucks hardcore.

I disabled autocorrect in settings, but it is still doing it. So I don’t know how to turn it off just in case anyone is wondering.

I have an iPhone 4, and I think autocorrect works pretty well on it. I’ve never had an Android phone, so I don’t know if their autocorrect is better or worse.

I have noticed, though, that autocorrect does not automatically know what language you are using. You have to set up what language you are using by using that language’s keyboard. (You can select keyboards in “Settings”, and the toggle between them by tapping that “world” key next to the spacebar). I once had my phone set to Spanish by accident, and got all kinds of weird mistakes while typing in English which sound like what is happening to you. I set the keyboard back to English, and autocorrect worked again. Are you sure you don’t have your phone set to Spanish somewhere?

Install Swype Beta 1.4

I think this is a fine question, and one I’ve been asking since first disabling the auto correct on my iPad, and then reinstalling it, hoping to cut down on typos. The problem is, the words it picks to make sure I don’t spell anything wrong are wrong about 50% of the time.

It is one of the worst features of an apple editor.

I hate autocorrect. I understand this thing can’t possibly be perfect, but unless I’m writing a technical document, or words not familiar with the general public, most auto correct functions should be straight forward. But they never are.

I have previewed this post. Let’s see how many errors still show up.

Are you using the standard keyboard that comes with Android? If so, that’s you rproblem. Most Android users use third-party on-screen keyboards, and auto-correct (and prediction) is done by the onscreen keyboard software. SwiftKey is generally regarded as having the best prediction, at least last time I looked into it. I use Swype myself.

I’ve been using Swype for the last few years and all of a sudden, about a month or two ago the accuracy went downhill. I’m not sure if there was a software upgrade or not, but it suddenly started suggesting words I’d never even heard before. Not only that, but the suggestions are getting to be so far off and so common, that more often I find myself just punching the words in instead of Swyping them. I changed (when it started happened) the Speed<->Accuracy slider from the default position all the way to accurate with no noticeable difference (in speed or accuracy). I just now slid it back all the way to ‘speed’ to see if that makes any difference.

It’s running version 3.26

Sorry I don’t have a factual answer for you, but the solution for me was getting the SwiftKey app. I had an iPhone before this Galaxy2, and wasn’t impressed with the autocorrect on that phone, either. My current phone came with three different keyboards installed, including Swype, and while Swype’s autocorrect is great, I never could get the hang of dragging my finger around the keyboard, being a touch-typist, my thumbs seem to know what the left and right hands are each supposed to type, I guess, so just using thumbs is OK, but using one finger on the “wrong” side of the keyboard for that hand doesn’t work for me. My right index finger doesn’t know where to find letters on the left side of the keyboard!

SwiftKey learns how you type, what you type, and remembers. It corrects, completes, and predicts words and you often can just tap the whole suggested word and keep typing. Makes for much faster typing on that little bitty keyboard! I think the full version is a couple bucks, but you can use a trial version for a while before it makes you buy it. See if you like it, and if you don’t you can just disable it.

Obligatory XKCD link

I see you’re comparing iOS’ Autocorrect to Android’s, which may be the reason for the differences in the first place.

But iOS’ isn’t much better. To expand on the problems:
It corrects perfectly appropriate words, used in the right context. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-qpSndmpGTf8/UFwWRwY-pkI/AAAAAAABCrs/ynlJ3CphlcE/s1600/IMG_2939.PNG
If you’re typing a long word, and it guesses correctly but you type a few more characters, the suggestion disappears and doesn’t return when you backspace.
It’s inconsistent. Sometimes it corrects correct words, sometimes it ignores obvious mistakes.

I think it’s struck a remarkable balance of being as irritating and unusable as possible, while retaining just enough utility to keep you using it.

iI downloaded SwiftKey and am happy with the improvement. I’m on the free trial now but will pay the $4 when the trial expires. thanks for the advice on the subject. not one Spanish word yet, plus pretty good predictive capabilities.